How to Clean a Blackboard


Blackboards are an important teaching tool for all teachers. As the school year goes on, chalk, dust and other deposits will accumulate daily on the blackboard. Eventually, it becomes very hard for students to see what the teacher has written on the board. Cleaning the blackboard should be a regular practice for any teacher.

Cleaning Options

Commercial Cleaners

There are plenty of commercial cleaners of various brands and types designed solely for cleaning the blackboard. Just visit any teacher’s supply store or janitor’s supply store in your neighborhood and choose the product that suits your requirements. It is vital that you follow the instructions stated on the product so as to avoid any damages.

Lemon Oil

Cleaning the blackboard with the use of lemon oil will leave a pleasant scent and a shiny surface. Lemon oil also has the capability to kill any bacteria on the blackboard’s surface. Pour in two teaspoons of lemon oil in the middle part of a clean, lint-free cloth. Fold the cloth in half and put it in a Ziploc bag. Seal the bag and let the cloth sit for about 12-24 hours before using it to wipe the blackboard.


Vinegar also has an antibacterial capability that kills bacteria from the blackboard’s surface. Streaking can also be avoided if you use vinegar while cleaning the blackboard. In a bucket, make a vinegar-water solution in 1:8 ratio. Dip a clean, lint-free cloth into the vinegar-water solution and use that to clean the board whenever required.

Steps Involved in Cleaning a Blackboard

Before You Start Cleaning

Before cleaning the blackboard, get rid of all the chalk dust from the surface as much as you can. Wipe the blackboard thoroughly using a soft chamois or a new eraser. Clean the tray of the blackboard using a damp paper towel to lessen the quantity of chalk dust in the area.

Cleaning Time

The procedure of cleaning the blackboard is all the same, regardless of the cleaning option that you have chosen above. Start cleaning at the top left hand corner of the board, going across and then, downward in a side-to-side motion. You will finish cleaning the board at the bottom right hand corner.

Tips and Warnings

Do not write anything on the blackboard when it is still wet, especially if you are using liquid cleaners. Permanent marks that are hard to remove will occur when you use chalk on a damp or wet chalkboard. Wait until it is completely dry before using the blackboard again. It would be better if you are cleaning the blackboard at the end of the school day and not using it until in the morning of the following school day.