Jasper Roberts Consulting - Widget

Teachers made $60 million selling lesson plans!

Just think about it
Teachers Pay Teachers is in the news again! $60 million so far!!! A recent article talks about TpT’s success.  Many criticize teachers for selling or using TpT products and lesson plans. But it leads me to wonder….
What is the core issue?
Is it that teachers are taking their free time to make something, market it, and sell it? That sounds like the American Dream!  It also sounds like a second job to me. Who should be taken to task for getting a second job and bettering the life of their family?
Is it that teachers are making money for doing what should be a “work of heart”? The folks that run the American Red Cross get a paycheck.  People who run Relay for Life get a paycheck.  Private adoption agencies make money. Anybody who works should get paid. Unless you want to move to a Communist country that is. I like it in America, and I like that amazing ideas, like the Pet Rock or American Symbols are available for sale.
 
Is it because there are some great resources and some not as great resources for sale? “Buyer Beware” Some stuff is just fluff, like the pet rock. Some stuff is too hard for one class and just right for another.  Teachers must be  discriminating shoppers, and make wise choices for their class. American Symbols was written for my 1st graders to be used in the first half of the year. I love it and after selling 1,433 units I think it can be vetted as quality curriculum.  The feedback tells other potential buyers if  the unit is quality curriculum. The description tells you when to use it and who it was created for.  If after reading descriptions and feedback, a teacher deems a product as worthy of her students’ time, then trust that teacher to lead her students to proficiency and beyond! 
Is it because Deanna Jump has made $2 million dollars and bought a “mansion”? I have never eaten lunch with Deanna and I have not been to her lovely home so I don’t know if it really is a mansion. I hope it is.  I hope it keeps her warm in the winter and cool in the summer, like all homes should. Have you been to Oprah’s house? Do you begrudge Oprah her mansion, her cars, her perfectly pampered pooches??? No because she earned it. Deanna has too.
Here is what I think many people miss in these arguments. What the publishers have provided for the students and teachers is not enough. Kids cannot become proficient or advanced without extra practice and engaging activities. Students need differentiated curriculum and CREATIVE activities. It also needs to be said that some teachers love kids, are master teachers,  but lack the creativity to come up with cool ideas. TpT, blogs, and Pinterest help teachers bring these “Why didn’t I think of that!” ideas into their classrooms.  The company Apple creates amazing ways for me to stay in touch with friends and family.  I don’t want to create the new iPhone, iPad, or iWhatever. I just want to use them to better my life. Many teachers don’t want to create, but know a great lesson when they see it. So, between publishers not being able to meet the needs of our students and teachers not being able to do it all themselves, we need a site like TpT to show us ways to help our students.
TpT teacher-creators, or teacher-preneurs,  are taking their own time to create learning opportunities and other teachers are using their own grocery money to buy them for children. Your children. My children.  Poor children. Rich children. Broken children. Children who have challenges. Children who need enrichment. 2 million dollars has been spent in Deanna Jump’s store by teachers trying to better the lives and educations of their students. BRAVO.
Teachers Pay Teachers has sold over $60 million in curriculum! That means $60 million dollars of money that could have been spent on family vacations, Starbucks, movies, or pedicures was spent on TpT to make teaching and learning more fun. BRAVO! 
BRAVO to anyone who takes their free time to make activities that students can interact with and grow from. BRAVO to the teacher who realizes that the curriculum she has isn't great, or isn’t enough to meet the needs in her classroom, or is BORING to her after her 12th year using it. I am so thankful for Teachers Pay Teachers!!! I am thankful that my son’s teacher has used Teachers Pay Teachers to buy materials that have helped him grow as a reader! BRAVO to $60 million dollars spent helping kids!
So should tens of thousands of teachers band together and support each other? Should these teachers share, for a small fee, their hard work, amazing ideas, and their print, teach, and learn lessons?  I say yes! Here’s to seeing that number of $60 million quadruple because the kids will benefit from every dollar spent.
Yes teachers are amazing

73 comments:

  1. And this...my friend...is yet ANOTHER reason I adore you!!! WELL SAID, girlfriend!!!
    Growing Firsties

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  2. Love, love, love this!!!! So well said!!!

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  4. I ditto what everyone else said and add a heartfelt thank you for creating and sharing to make my classroom so much more fun!

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  5. Very well said! I couldn't agree with you more.
    Some sellers, I think, price their products too high, but then I just don't have to buy their products. Just like any high-priced product I'd see at a store.
    If it's worth it to me then I'll buy it! Keep making your products I love them. I hate the big publishers lessons.

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  6. Thank you, Katie for speaking up for all TPT sellers!! I often call it my "second job" and really do spend countless amounts of hours creating and brainstorming different products that will help not only MY students, but maybe others as well. :) Bravo, indeed!!

    -Aris

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    1. Right on, Aris! Being married to Teacher to the Core I can vouch for the HOURS and many late nights she puts in making curriculum!

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    1. Thank you Denise! TpT is amazing!!!!!!!

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  8. Word! Just too much truth in this post, sister! :) Absolutely LOVED it! :)
    XOXO

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  9. Amazingly truthful, and another reason I love your blog. :-)

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  10. YES!! x 1,000,000

    I enjoy that people in other professions (who have ALWAYS felt like they can comment on a teachers job anyway) vilify teachers for making money off of the things they create for the classroom. Even if all of the other positive factors weren't there, I would still not have a problem with this. It's like people are offended that teachers aren't living up to their end of the bargain of living a life as the underpaid, overworked civil servants who take care of their children for 6+ hours a day.

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    1. Yes, Kristin! And people are jealous of other peoples' successes!

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  11. You hit the nail on the head! Thank you for this!
    Alison
    Rockin' and Lovin' Learnin'

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  12. Thank you for saying what many others might not be able to. I agree with every word you have said. The extra 7 or 10 dollars a month makes a difference. And all I'm doing is creating things that MY students need to improve. What's the hurt in putting it out there for others! Again, thank you!!!

    Christin
    Shifting Teacher K-2

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  13. You;ve said it well. Publishers make millions selling their resource books, we are all just our own publishing companies.

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  14. You are just a pile of awesome. Love everything you said and agree 100%. Way to go, Deanna, for working hard for your students and getting to that $2 million mark, you deserve it!

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  15. I love this!! Very well said! Thanks for sharing!


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  16. Love this & Love that you are standing up for teachers - buyers and sellers alike - everywhere! Every penny earned by teachers is earned through hard work and dedication. Thanks for sharing your thoughts and go you! :)

    Kelly
    First Grade Fairytales

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  17. I think it's pretty sad that teachers have spent $60 million for their students! We all know that teachers don't really make a whole lot of money! I know I've spent more than I should at Teachers Pay Teachers, but the stuff is so great, and you can always find something that suits the needs of your students! Great post!

    Sally from Elementary Matters

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    1. Sally, thank you for pointing that out. It is both amazing and a sad state of affairs that teachers invest so much of their personal money.

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  18. BRAVO to YOU for this amazing blog post. After six years of teaching a boring curriculum, I am finally able to find creative and fun lesson plans on TPT. I love seeing my kids get excited about a new art project, or writing lesson, or word work center, or math game... you get the idea. I don't create items for TPT (because I don't have time) but I am soooo appreciative to those who do because it's saved me so much time!!

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  19. Love this!! Thank you so much for writing it...and Go Deanna Jump!! You deserve it!!
    Heather

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  20. Very well said, Babe! I think it all boils down to jealousy. I also think a good question to ask non-teachers is "how much do you spend on supplies for your job?" The answer, of course, would be and indignant "zero"!

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  21. Love Love Love!!!!!
    Michelle
    www.mrsscotese.blogspot.com

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  22. Love this! I agree whole-heartedly!

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  23. I totally agree...and...is anybody pointing fingers at mailbox, etc for all those lessons that are sold in the education shops that we used to go to for ideas?

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    1. What a great point!!!! I loved the "Mailbox Co" and did not think twice about spending $30 a year to have darling and smart worksheets arrive at my door. What is the difference? Why are people up in arms over real people making money helping others? It's odd.

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  24. Great post! I couldn't agree with you more!

    ~Laura

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    1. Hezzie what happened? I am dying to know what you said!

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  26. Love this! Sometimes, I think so many feel teachers should just do EVERYTHING out of the goodness of their heart! I think we do A LOT out of the goodness of our heart! And like many, the little bit of extra I am making on TpT is going right back into my classroom...sometimes to create new products, buy new products, add more books, you name it!!!

    I think it is wonderful that so many are finding success! I have a lot of Deanna's products and they are wonderful...so are yours...so are so many! It takes a lot of work to create quality products and like you said, it is just like a second job!

    I don't know about you, but I am a much better teacher because of TpT, blogs, Pinterest, and Instagram! It's collaboration at its best!!! And, isn't that the point? To become the best teachers we can be, so we can foster amazing growth and creativity in our students! I think so!

    Thank you for such a great post!
    Beth :)
    A Kindergarten Life For Me

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  27. Perfect! I never have been able to understand why this is such an issue... why should big publishing companies make all the money for crummy materials when REAL TEACHERS are making GREAT materials?!?!?! :-) Love it!

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  28. Teachers unite! Creative Teachers, Happy Buyers, Happy children . . .What's wrong with that? You go friends out there! We want entrepreneurs in our world. I say Kudos to all who enjoy what they do! Debbie

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  29. Very well said!!! I am so in love with TPT as a buyer (never a seller!) It has changed my way of teaching in a wonderful way. The kids are having fun. I am having fun. I am happy for all the teachers who have made money- even lots of money! I say- "GOOD JOB!". You have helped so many of us! I think Deanna (and anyone who can afford it) deserves to buy whatever they can afford to buy- even a mansion! I am a HUGE TPT supporter and introduce any teacher I can to TPT!. Carol

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  30. I agree 100%! You are absolutely right!!!!

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  32. after reading this, I shared it with my fourth graders. They all agreed with you! One of them said, "Heck Mrs. Sadler, if you can make some money, go for it!" One other said, "you make the cutest things for us to do!" As far as something being researched based...action research baby!!! I know when I create an activity or lesson for my students and they perform well on an assessment, then I know it was successful, that is research enough for me! My students said if it can help them do well on a test it is nice that others can learn from what we do as well! What great little kiddos!!!
    Thanks Katie for sticking up for all of us, who are doing action research in the field and creating common core aligned products...whoever thought teaching could be a lucrative business and a teacher would be a threat to publishing companies??? I love it!!

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    1. Thank you to all the 4th graders out there!!!

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  33. Hi

    I love your article. Why is that some within our society think that teachers should not make a living.

    I am a parent of a 1st grader. My daughters teacher uses TpT materials. I was wonder if you could make some recommendations on some of the materials that parents could purchase and use as a supplement. I am sure I am not the only parent that reads your blog.

    Thank you

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  34. So well said. Thank you for all teachers, and all children everywhere!

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  35. well said! :) I love it!!

    Christina DeCarbo

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  36. Oh, my! What a lovely post! How wonderful is it that we have the opportunity to create and share??!! I am amazed everyday at the clever and creative resources I see on TpT! Thank you for being our voice AND for including the pet rock! Made me grin! Love you, girl!!
    Laura
    Peace, Love, and First Grade

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  37. Couldn't agree with you more! As someone who lacks the time or creativity to come up with much of my own stuff, I love that other teachers are willing to share and think they deserve what they make!

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  38. When I goggled TPT the other day, I saw for the first time that someone had an objection to TPT. I could not believe it and still do not understand it after reading all of his comments and all of the comments his readers stated.
    I am so thankful for all of the teachers who post on TPT. I, only wish I had the time and creativity to invent such amazing lesson plans. Let's please ignore all the criticism and enjoy how fortunate we are to have fabulous teachers out there sharing lessons for such a great price. Thank you to all of the TPT contributors!! And . . . my classroom thanks you too.

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  39. Well said! I feel the same way you do! Thanks for sharing your opinions!
    -Monique
    More Than Math by Mo

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  40. BRAVO indeed! Very well said Katie! I cannot believe, that after all of the criticism against teachers for "having it easy", with built-in vacations, summer's off, and "shorter" workdays, we CONTINUE to get criticized for working BEYOND our contractual obligations to benefits our students, and the students of those all over the world. It's mind-boggling, really...

    Thanks for your great take on the issue - I am sharing this with everyone I know :)

    Rae
    Mindful Rambles

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  41. It amazes me when I hear that we should sell everything free or cheap. I feel like we all give so much. Everyone has free items in their stores, does giveaways, has sales, etc. I recently had a customer who said my product that is 400 pages was overpriced at 29.99. I couldn't believe it. Her exact quote was: "It is a great product but way too overpriced. We are supposed to be teachers helping teachers. I'm not sure I would have bought it for the high price." It has a 40 page preview! I'm sorry for the rant but I just don't get it. We all work so hard and that product took months and months of long hours. Thank you for sharing your voice. Love it!

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  42. AMEN to all of that!!!!! It's our time and it's our money and if people really stopped to think about it...we're making learning more enjoyable and fun because we are able to work together. Great post!

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  43. AMEN and BRAVO, sista girl!

    faithfulinfirst.blogspot.com

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  44. Thank you for sharing this! As a first year kindergarten teacher, TPT has been so helpful to me. I love all the fantastic resources that these amazing teachers have created and I know my kiddos do too. Your blog has been such an inspiration as well- thank you!

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Thanks for commenting! I feel the love!

 
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