Erasers help us get rid of our mistakes. The \u201clead\u201d in the pencil is actually graphite, which is made up of carbon.\r\n\r\nAs you\u2019re writing, the particles in the graphite in your pencil stick to the fibers on the paper. An eraser, on the other hand, is usually made of rubber but here and there, you\u2019ll see ones made from plastic.\r\n\r\nErasers are mixed with sulfur to make them last longer, vegetable oil is added to soften them and make them more flexible. Abrasives and dyes also are added.\r\n\r\nErasers work because of friction, which is caused by two surfaces rubbing against one another. If you rub your hands, they becomes warmer. The same thing happens when you use an eraser. The heat from the friction causes the sticky part of the eraser to \u201cgrab\u201d the graphite particles that have been loosened due to the abrasives in the eraser.\r\n\r\nThe paper doesn\u2019t tear\u00a0 due to the softener in the eraser.\r\n\r\nWhile the rubber is \u201cgrabbing\u201d the graphite particles, there are pieces of the combined graphite and rubber\u00a0 left behind. Those are the annoying pieces of the eraser that you have to brush off your paper.\r\n\r\nIn 1770, Edward Naime, an English engineer, accidentally picked up a piece of rubber instead of the white bread that was used as an eraser at the time. When he used it, he noticed that the pencil marks were \u201crubbed off,\u201d which is why it\u2019s called\u00a0 \u201crubber\u201d now!