10 Things Only '90s Students Would Know

The Internet strikes again.

Kids today probably have a completely dierent school experience as things become more high-tech. Heavy hardbound books? Their tablets can carry volumes of e-books, and the gadget's way lighter. Research paper? They'll just whip out their phone and input what they need through voice command—"Hello, Google." Group work? They have online messaging for that.

We didn't have it that easy but it's definitely a lot more memorable and fun. Because we're feeling sentimental, we round up things we used to do in school for a quick throwback session.

Writing on Manila paper for a group report
We didn't have the luxury of a Powerpoint or Prezi template but we came up with all sorts of gimmicks with cartolinas and Manila paper. We used colored pens and lettering just to make our reports less boring. We also learned how to write without the blue-red-blue lines by folding and following the creases.

Keeping your magic pencil intact
Losing one piece of lead from the stack meant not being able to use your favorite magic pencil ever again.


Naming the different parts of a floppy disk
At the start of the school year, our computer teacher asked us to bring one eight-inch floppy disk and one 3.5-inch floppy disk (a.k.a. micro diskette or micro floppy). The diskette’s storage space ranged from 1.2 to 1.88 megabytes. Now, we have the two-terrabyte portable drive and it's still not enough to carry our movies.

Buying fillers for your notebook binder
A different color for every subject.


Watching the women trade stationery
The barter system in its crudest form

Searching for that pen with many colors
This type of pen could have as much as 10 colors, one button for each. It was so thick that it was diicult to write with. But it was also so cool that it didn't matter if you couldn't hold it with your tiny hands.

Showing off that complicated pop-out pencil case
Built for all your writing needs. It's either you had one of these or you didn't have any writing implements at all.

Drinking from your classmate's Coleman
There was always that student who brought a huge Coleman jug to school and the whole class just drank from the same container. At some point, you probably thought it was bottomless. Eventually everyone had one!


Using the overhead projector as your mirror
Remember that projector your teachers used with an acetate (or plastic cover)? Well, during lunch break it served as a mirror for your pre-game needs.

Leafing through the card catalog at the library
If you needed a book, you had to check the card catalog drawers first, then check the call number, and then look for its assigned shelf. Better if you memorized the Dewey Decimal System.

This story originally appeared on

* Minor edits have been made by the editors.

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