Saturday, October 11, 2014

Learning Multiplication

If your students are anything like mine, they are still counting on their hands. Yet I know multiplication is still right around the corner. I created a new product to help transition those addition learning students to the beginning steps of multiplication in a FUN way!

Includes several strategy posters!

 Interactive Journal Pages

 Matching or Memory Game

Check it out HERE at my TpT Store!

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Classroom Tour

This post is SO overdo! Forgive me as I have been so busy this start of the school year. I updated several pieces in my classroom simply to make it more user friendly. As soon as I made these changes, I thought, "Why has it taken me so long to do this?" Things that in the long run save me SO much time and energy! I also spent my summer months making things for my TPT store which I implemented in my own classroom this year! I hope you enjoy your mini tour! 

My rolling cart next to my desk... perfect for extra copies, things I need to file for each subject, or things I plan on making. 

This is one of *those* novel ideas that have saved me so much time and has helped me get organized! I used hanging folder with tabs with the days of the week. After I make copies or get mail in my mailbox for my students, I file them in the folder for which day I will use it or send it home. 

History bulletin board. I like to put up vocabulary words with definitions for some of the words we learn in each subject. 

 Here is my science bulletin board. We are studying life cycles.

 Another novel idea!  Instead of checking off each students' homework and spending half my day figuring out who didn't turn it in or put their name on their homework, students simply highlight their name and flip their clip to say they turned it in. 

Word Wall. I am teaching second grade this year, so a word wall is certainly needed. The words on the pole off to the left are our current week's words. After the students are tested on those words they go on the word wall.

My reading library with labels by genres and authors. 

 Daily 5 board. These signs remind students of the expectations for each station. The clip chart determines which station each student is at.

 Oscar's Hall of Fame  Students love answering higher level questions for a chance to make it in the Hall of Fame. They get so excited to write their name on the Hall of Fame!

 Math bulletin board displaying problem of the week (POW), posters, and current topics of study!

Math manipulatives... FINALLY organized. Why has it taken me so many years to get organized?

 Reading bulletin board- currently displaying reading genres. Love my posters from Cupcakes n' Curriculum!

Writing bulletin board is currently displaying my sentence writing posters from my Sentence Writing Unit. Kids loved learning how to write properly written sentences with this unit! 

 My Writing Center! This is one of my new additions to my room. I spent several weeks over the summer creating this and it has quickly became one of my best sellers! Kids LOVE choosing their own writing project during our Daily 5 rotations. In one of the green trays you'll see our Whole Class Writing Journals. Kids get to write a journal entry (a fictional or nonfictional piece in the class journal. Students love reading their peers' entry and then adding their own!

 This is how I organize the writing center activities.

First day of school cake by my sweet, talented mother-in-law! Anti-gravity cake! How cool is this?!

 First day of school set up! Ready for my Hollywood Stars!

I hope you enjoyed! Hopefully I'll get better at this blogging thing :) 

Monday, August 11, 2014

How to Increase your TpT Sales

If you're anything like me, you LOVE creating new products for your own classroom and you love to share what you've created with other teachers. I'm here to share some tips and advice (not magic) that has worked for me, and hopefully will work to build your Teachers pay Teachers store and generate some sales!
One of the best things I started to do was look at my product statistic. These numbers don't lie! You can get very helpful information from looking at these numbers. Here's how to find your product sales statistics.
What these numbers can tell you is what items have been sold the most, viewed the most/least, wishlisted, etc. These are the three things I look at the most. 

-For instance, if an item has been viewed several times, but hasn't sold very much= red flag.
-If an item has been wishlisted several times= good sign.
-If an item has been sold, but hasn't gotten votes= red flag. That could potentially mean people bought it, but didn't like it that much to leave positive feedback. 

So, you're asking... what do I do with that information? Well, you start working on redoing your old products. If you're anything like me, you have a running list of things you'd like to make and you probably find yourself working on those things. Rather than making NEW things, spend some time investing in your old products that don't have as high of statistics. So that leads us to step 2. 

After looking at my product statistics, I decided to put creating new items on hold and redid some of my old products. Here are some examples of my new cover pages. 

Your product may be FABulous, but if it doesn't have an eye catching cover page, forget it.  
My multiplication ice cream incentive was one that was viewed several times, but only sold a few times, and no votes (feedback) was left. Yet, it is a product I believe in! So, I decided to give it a face lift! 
Reading Graphic Organizers
Math Measurement Word Wall
Mystery Reader
Head to my store to see my newest products and old products with face lifts!
As you can see, these are just cover pages that were redone. Some of these products I redid the entire thing, but some of them, I just did more of an eye catching cover page. This leads us to step 3. 
I know it seems strange to spend money when you're wanting to make money, but just like ANY business, you have to spend some money up front to make a return. As you see in my examples of my cover page face lifts, clip art and backgrounds REALLY make a difference! If it's boring, bland, no color, no clip art... it will NOT get the attention it deserves. 

Here are some of my favorite FREE TpT authors: 

There are TONS of FREE clip art/backgrounds out there, but don't be scared to spend a little cash on super cute clip art that would fit the theme of that product. For instance, my multiplication ice cream incentive unit was a perfect reason for buying Graphics from the Pond ice cream clip art.  

I also invested in several sets from Melonheadz clip art. She is one of my absolute favorites! Find some clip art that you can see yourself reusing several times with various products!
I used to not invest my time in to creating good previews. I would either skip out on it or upload a collage of the product. The problem with collages is that if there are several pages to your document, it is hard to truly get a grasp of what it looks like. The problem with NO preview is that teachers will NOT want to buy it if they can't see it! 
See how I did my preview on my Editable Teacher Binder.
Once you have your new, updated products, you need to get the word out there! After all, if there are hundreds of thousands of products, how else will your products be seen if you don't put them on display? Yes, people can stumble upon your store through searching for something in particular, but you don't want to just sit, cross your fingers, and wait for that to happen. 

So, head to Pinterest! Pinterest is number one way people end up at Teachers pay Teachers. The best thing I have done is ask to join collaborative boards. These are group boards that somebody has started and allows certain people to join to add their products to the board. These are great because you will reach a greater audience than just your Pinterest followers. 
As you see above, also create your own boards to pin your own products. 
Head to my Pinterest to see the boards I am apart of.  
Last, but not least, host giveaways and offer flash freebies to your followers. This means you HAVE to have some sort of teacher social media! NOT personal, a teacher account! Whether it is Instagram, Pinterest, Facebook, blog, or Twitter, you need to connect with other teachers! After all, teachers are your target audience! Work on building that audience by following people and hopefully they'll follow you in return. Then, be generous to your followers and give some of your items away. When you post a new item (or give a face lift to an old product), do a 15 minute flash freebie to your Instagram followers! Ask that they follow you and/or leave feedback for grabbing it. Hosting a giveaway helps build followers as well!  You can see my blog for some linky parties/giveaways I've hosted.

You can check out my social media accounts here:
Let's say you've done all of these things... and still nothing? Don't fret. Keep doing the small things day to day and encourage yourself that it'll build over time. It can be very helpful to look at other TpT stores to get ideas. You can be inspired by some of their best sellers, how to redo your cover pages, etc., but while you're doing that, be very careful not to compare. After leaving their stores... you have the choice to be encouraged or discouraged. See it as a goal of yours and know that your little by little steps will and can get you there! After all, the top sellers had to start somewhere. They were at one point in your shoes!
So why do all of this? I know some of you may be thinking, why build followers? It seems so superficial. I don't see it that way. I see it as I have products that will help other teachers save their own time and money, so why not share? If I keep it to myself, that would not be bettering anyone. And yes, I buy from other teachers as well! Its a SHARING community, which is one of the many reasons why I love Teachers Pay Teachers!

My parting words... I hope these steps help you. These are not magic steps... it REALLY takes time to invest in building followers, creating amazing products, and generating sales. Do NOT give up! I promise you... it's worth your time, energy and money.  

Please let me know if you have ANY questions!
Thanks for reading. 

Friday, August 8, 2014

Congratulations Melissa! You Won!

I'll be contacting you through email :)

Thursday, August 7, 2014

My Entire Store is 20% OFF Today! (August 7th!)


Wednesday, August 6, 2014

New Products!

Excited for my new products! On sale for the next two days :)

Check them out at my store HERE

Friday, August 1, 2014

HUGE Back to School Giveaway

Are you ready for a HUGE back to school giveaway? I have teamed up with some amazing teachers to provide you with some sweet resources that will help your transition back to school a little easier. 

This giveaway is OVER an 80 DOLLAR VALUE!  

One lucky winner will receive...

Math About Me Project- Back to School- Icebreaker 

by 4mulaFun

Writing Process Chart 

by Secondgradealicious

Beginning of the Year Owl Printable 
by Promoting Success

My Future Is So Bright Writing Craftivity 

by Bright Concepts 4 Teachers

Math About Me Poster 
by Classroom by Creations

Labels For The Whole Classroom 

 by Kindergarten Kapers

Reward Coupons 
by Third in Hollywood
"World's Best Sharpener" by
Last, but not least... a $25 gift card to Teachers pay Teachers!

Sooooo... are you BEYOND excited or WHAT? Enter below to win! Winner will be announced August 8th :) Good luck!

Thank you to all the wonderful teachers who donated their fabulous products! Make sure you all check out their other products... there is some amazing things!