As I throw money at marketing myself as a web designer, writer, or educational guru, the message I look forward to seeing the most is "Product Sold on TeachersPayTeachers." It's not because of the fabulous 60% (minus PayPal) commission, and it's not merely because I love other teachers or the kids that much. The reason I like to see it, once a day recently, is that it's real money made as part of my grand plan to make real money from selling goods and services rather than myself as a slave.
I look at Teachers Pay Teachers this way: someone found the best possible way to get teachers to find lessons on the search engines. I did not figure that out myself, but I do know that when my To Kill a Mockingbird Webquest was on my own site for a few years, it received about 1500 hits. While it was one of my best, it was very local to Milwaukee and even had a couple of dead links, but 1500 people gladly took it free and made it theirs.
That was fine when I was teaching, but I need that daily reminder that all the work I put into creating interesting lessons was not time completely wasted. The good news for the customers is that they can find something they know works and get back to grading papers instead of spending the hours upon hours of finding resources and creating lessons. Small adjustments, and then print. I rarely did that, partially because teaching is very personal, but I've gotten over that. If other teachers want to use what I created in order to save 80 hours a year in just creating new assignments (and they're willing to pay), I will encourage them to do so, especially when school districts are denying books and other resources to these hard-working people. One of my $5 lessons might last a week, but it's ready for the internet, been proven in a classroom, and doesn't include 100 extra pages of fluff. A la carte teaching, I suppose.
Of course, if I ever got back into teaching, would I ever use TPT myself? YES! A few dollars to potentially save a few hours? Are you kidding? For example, the Pride and Prejudice Pack I sell includes a PowerPoint I made with background information. I searched for about three hours trying to steal someone else's PowerPoint, but all I could find that was close to what I wanted was a 30-page, boring presentation posted by a teacher in India. I then created my own PowerPoint, which took probably another three hours. Do you know how many hundreds, maybe thousands of English teachers from all over the world teach Pride and Prejudice? Sure, there's potential for money for me, but it's more about those people not each wasting 6 hours. Even if you only think your research time is worth $2 an hour, my collection of assignments is a deal for that one part. All of you Jane Austen teachers. Buy a good introductory resource rather than create it yourself. Find another one if you think mine won't be that great, but please don't spend 6 hours creating your own. She's been dead for 200 years, so there should be decent information available.
Now, if you just MUST do it yourself, then create your own account and sell it. Plain and simple. Create it and post it, all at the same time, and you'll have some extra cash for heading out Friday night. Or you can spend some of that money to save the time of creating everything yourself in order to have enough time for your loved ones. Whichever you choose, get involved, even if it's to share your lessons freely (like I did when I was actually teaching). We can make teaching a better profession with the right tools, and TeachersPayTeachers is one of those tools.
If you want to just send me your stuff, that's an option, too.
And, if you have an idea to make us rich and leave TpT in the dust, I'm your design man.
But for now, I just like the message in my inbox saying that I'm making some kind of money.
Oh yeah, remember to click on a google ad to donate $.50.