Monday, February 23, 2015

To the frustrated teacher: There is a solution.

It took me six years to burn out.  I had one good year in a charter school, and then public school smacked me right in the face.  In just 5 short years, I went from being a bubbly, compassionate, eager-to-learn teacher to a stressed and hot tempered witch that I swore I would never be.

CAMERON DIAZ BAD TEACHER photo: Cameron Diaz in Bad Teacher CameronDiazinBadTeacher.gif/> 

I hated to hear from teachers who loved their jobs.  I didn't understand how they could ever love a job that paid so little and required so much.  A job that took time away from my family and made me cry at least once per month (and that was on a good month).

Then, in my last two months of teaching, I found Teachers Pay Teachers (TpT).

I swore I would never buy a thing from this place.  I was poor, and I am as hardheaded as they come, so I just used freebies.  When I became a seller, I said I would never buy clip art.  I could use the free ones and make my products look just as cute as everyone else's.

Well, after a long year, I finally gave into my stubborn ways and started buying because I realized how much more valuable my time was and how much more awesome the paid products actually are.  I could spend $3 on a product, or I could spend 2 hours of my time creating it myself.  I am certain now that if I would have found TpT sooner, I might still be in teaching.  So, I wanted to share my top 6 reasons why TpT is for you (because I couldn't narrow it down to just 5).

# 6  Because you are going to spend your money 
       at an overpriced teacher store anyway.

Why not spend your money buying products from REAL teachers?!  They have real-time experience, they are uber-creative, and they know what works in a classroom.  They also might even be struggling financially because they ARE a teacher after all.

# 5  Because TpT sellers are honest and will 
       work to make you happy!

When was the last time you called up Pearson to let them know about all those mistakes they made in the workbooks they gave you?  If a seller makes a mistake in a product, they will fix it!  What??!! And most times, they will do it quick (I typically get mine done that same day).

# 4  Because they update products for FREE!

You know how your school has to buy books and materials EVERY year from the big textbook companies?  And I'm sure you also know how sometimes our textbooks are years behind (Remember when Pluto was demoted?) Well, here on TpT, most of us update our products when they are no longer current.  We send you a little note when they are updated, and you can download the file free of charge.

# 3  Because they will make you look good!

The "teacher authors" here on TpT are some of the most creative I have ever seen/met.  I am in awe of their ideas.  Here are just a few examples (none of them are my own, and I don't personally know either of these two people.  I just think their stuff is genius!).

Science Doodles on TpT

Simply Skilled in Second on TpT
If you want your kids to go home raving about the fun activity you had them do in class, or if you want your principal to brag about you to all your coworkers, or if you want SUPER results on your formal observation, don't waste another minute!

# 2  Because your time is important.

I could make an exhaustive list here of all the demands placed on teachers, but I won't because you know what they are.

# 1  Because family comes first!

Work is work.  And as important as those sweet children in your class are, your family is just as important.  If you are spending all your time on lesson designing, your family is suffering.  This was my biggest downfall as a teacher, and I refuse now to take time away from my family for my job.  These moments are too precious to pass by.

Now, I know the naysayers, like my former self, will say that I am only doing this because I am a seller, and I want your money, and that's fine because I get you.  I used to be you.  And nothing will change your mind but your own experience.  But, I believe in TpT because I have a very real understanding of the what teaching takes out of a person, and I know first-hand how much this place can impact your life.

If you are burnt out and you believe me, check it out at!  It is a game changer!

Sunday, February 22, 2015

About April

My name is April.  I am a wife, mom of two, former teacher, and TpTer!  I was born and raised in Texas even though my accent doesn't say so.  For six long years, I was the teacher who loved making lesson plans and analyzing data, but wanted someone else to do the dirty work (i.e. teach the kids!), so my current job as an educational diagnostician suits me well.  I now get to help teachers make meaningful learning experiences for students with disabilities.  I am not the most eloquent writer, but am going to give this blog thing a shot!

Here are some pictures of my favorite people in the world!

I love this man!  We have been married almost 7 whole years!

We have been blessed with these two little stinkers whom we love so much!

Princess Number 1

And Princess Number 2

Thanks so much for visiting my blog!

Schoolhouse Diva Products

Here are two freebies that students will love:

Here are two of my current favorite products:

You can see all my products at Schoolhouse Diva on Teachers Pay Teachers!