I have always enjoyed making my own classroom materials, but I actually started doing so out of necessity. As the teacher of very below level 5th graders, some of whom were almost 12 years old, it was nearly impossible to find materials on their level that would hold their interest. Now as a teacher of gifted second grade students I find myself in the same position, but for the opposite reason. I have 7 year-olds who breeze through Harry Potter and Percy Jackson novels!
I always freely shared my materials with other teachers and would often hear them tell me that I should sell my creations. Well, for one thing I had no idea how and for another, it just didn't feel right. Then a friend emailed me about Teachers Pay Teachers. And then she emailed me again about 6 months later. And then she emailed me again with the story of the amazing Deanna Jump who had just earned $26,000 in three months! So, facing salary freezes, budget cuts and serious changes to our profession, I signed up to be a seller in February 2011.
It was a very difficult decision for me. I felt as though freely sharing is what makes the teaching profession so great and selling my products just didn't feel natural. However, I gave it a try anyway and was overwhelmed with the responses from other teachers buying my products! Over time, I've come to believe that I made the right decision. I enjoy creating materials that other teachers are looking for and I can offer them at much lower prices than they might pay for a resource book. I've received the most wonderful comments and feedback from teachers buying my work and that wholeheartedly reinforces that fact that I did indeed make the right decision. Most of my products are $3, so I don't envision myself ever being in the ranks of the very top sellers, but the money I'm earning definitely helps pay for the graphics, licensing, and web-hosting needed to create and share my materials on the blog. I'm hoping that after tax time they'll even be some left over for a little vacation!
In an effort to continue the spirit that makes our profession grow, I started this blog to share what's going on in my classroom in hopes that I might inspire some great moments in your classroom. I make a conscious effort to make and share lots of "freebie" activities here and in my Teachers Pay Teachers store as well. I think that helps offset my lingering pangs of guilt about charging other teachers for some of the more involved, time-consuming materials I create.
So, whether you are a customer of my TpT store or a blog reader who has no desire to shop at TpT, I thank you just the same for being here. The responsibility of updating this blog keeps me so motivated and enthusiastic about our profession and I am so thankful for it and for you every single day.
If you don't yet have a TpT account to download freebies or are thinking of becoming a seller yourself, you can sign up here. If you have any questions about becoming a seller, I'd be happy to help!
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