Saturday, January 5, 2013

Teachers Pay Teachers Tips, Polar Bear Fun, + Giveaway!!

Happy Saturday Friends,

Raise your hand if your Winter Break ends in 2 days?!?! {Hands up here!}
Sigh...I have enjoyed every minute of my Winter Break. Just being stress free has been rejuvenating for me!
I do miss my kiddos though & can't wait to see their smiling faces on Monday!

Today I wanted to talk about something that I have seen many discussions on lately...Teachers Pay Teachers feedback. This is not a vent, per se...JMO.

I have seen and heard a lot lately that people who browse Teachers Pay Teachers are positively commenting on paid products and freebies, but then docking the creator on the rating. Has this happened personally to me? Yes.

If you haven't created a product, you may be unaware of this, but many of us spend hours and days creating our products. I know on a full unit, I spend at least a week creating it. It takes a lot of time to set everything up on a page, go over & over it, purchase clip art (out of our own pocket), and organize our ideas. If you purchase a product, then yes, you have every right to analyze it the way you want to; however, please keep in mind, that we aren't creating the product solely for you. We are creating it for a general audience, so you may need to tweak the ideas to suit the needs of your classroom.

My thoughts...If you aren't happy with a the seller first before leaving feedback. I have had the honor of getting to know many bloggers/ TPT sellers throughout this blogging experience and I haven't come across any sellers that wouldn't help you if you are unsatisfied with your purchase. I leave my contact information in every product and in the description of every product that I sell. Contact the seller- chances are they WILL help you! :)

Keep in mind before leaving feedback:

1. How much time did this product save me from planning and creating this for your own classroom when giving it a rating? 

2. All Teachers Pay Teachers strive to maintain the best rating possible (4.0)! If the product is a good product, don't be so critical. Think about what your rating might do to their future sales on that product if you bring it down from a 4.0 (especially if it doesn't have many ratings on the product yet). Think about the hours that person spent creating that product, because it's not a situation where we snap our fingers, hit publish, and post it on TPT. Like I said earlier, we spend days & weeks on our products. It is so disheartening when I create a product that I have poured my heart into & the rating gets docked without explanation or even with a positive comment.  If you have suggestions, contact the seller first. If there is a mistake or two, contact the seller first. It will get fixed! Remember, we are all human and sometimes mistakes happen. :) 
With that being said, if it's a really horrible, poor quality product (because I'm sure that there are a few sellers out there who just try to make money & do not consider quality), then you have every right to rate it as you wish.

3. Freebies are a gift from the creator. Be generous in your rating. If the freebie isn't downright horrible, then don't dock the rating of the freebie. That's not very nice and if this keeps happening, do you think creators are going to be inclined to keep providing freebies to the TPT audience if they feel unappreciated?

This is just my opinion friends! Thanks for listening!

Speaking of units, I just finished my Palling Around With Polar Bears Unit!! 

This is very similar to the Plenty of Penguins unit that I just created. It has several thinking maps, writing pages, Polar Bear Fact Keeper Journal, facts craftivity, and much more.
Click HERE to see it in my TPT store!

**I also have this bundled with my Penguins unit, if you want both. It is $1.50 cheaper purchasing it as a bundle then if you purchase the 2 of them separately. Click HERE to check it out!!

*** I am giving away 2 of these units!! Enter in rafflecopter below and I will pick 2 winners on Tuesday January 8th! :)

Have a wonderful weekend!!


  1. Great post on TpT. Lots of people don't know what goes into it. I always leave comments...especially on FREEBIES! It amazes me how many downloads some people get on a particular unit with only a few feedbacks.

    Polar Bear unit looks great!
    The Resourceful Apple

  2. I whole heartedly agree, Lisa! :) On freebies especially, I don't know WHAT people are thinking downgrading them...they are FREE for pity's sake! Ugh! I honestly think that some folks who go trolling around on TPT only looking for freebies are the same folks that think that we just pop out these projects in 20 minutes and that if they get started they'll be the next Deanna Jump. Maybe in the future, TPT will remove the ratings from freebies. I think it would be a step in the right direction. If that does not work for you or your students...delete it. Don't be grandiose and post something petty just because no one really knows who you know? *sigh*... Just ridiculous! Anyway...on a totally LIGHTER note...I am really excited about your new polar bear unit! :) It looks really great! And very little ink! :) I've got to get better with doing things in black and white! :) Thanks for another great post! :)

    Mrs. Russell's Room

  3. Thanks for sharing that info about TPT!! There will always be Negative Nelly's in the world!!! I really don't understand why people always have to be so negative!! I would ask "What have you done? and What have you created?" I have never purchased anything or downloaded any freebie from TPT or fellow bloggers that haven't been satisfied with!!

    Crossing my fingers that I am one of the lucky winners of your Polar Bear unit-Too C-U-T-E!!!
    Ms. Jones’ Junction

  4. Thanks for your openness! I whole-heartedly agree with the above comments! Your new unit is adorable!

    Learning is for Superstars
    My TPT Store

  5. Thank you for your post on TpT ratings. Very well put and hopefully helpful to many!

  6. This was a wonderful reminder to everyone. I totally agree with you 100%. There will always be someone who isn't happy. That's just life. It hurts when it happens to you. I just don't get it.

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  8. Fully agree! Saying thank you is the least I can do after downloading a freebie. I know how long it takes to put a unit together, not easy, not quick at all.
    I am working on a PB unit but I am hoping to get lucky!
    My Second Sense

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  10. Thank you so much for your honesty on TPT ratings. I only leave nice comments...if only everyone else left nice comments... Fingers crossed for your giveaway! :)

    Third Grade All Stars

  11. I only leave nice comments. I have a new store and I hope people will be nice. I am your newest followers.
    Buggy for First Grade

  12. I like your tips. My poor sister received her first feedback from TpT on a non-freebie and the person gave her a 1.8. She felt horrible. I once had someone give me a 2.5 on something and that product is my third highest selling product. I guess you can't make everyone happy. When leaving feedback, I always use the eBay rule: if there is a problem, contact the seller before leaving feedback. That is the only fair way! On a side note, I noticed that you are soooo close to 1,000 followers too! Wow!

    Primary Reading Party

  13. Thanks for writing what many of us are thinking! It is so irksome that someone rates you low on a FREEBIE, come on, it was FREE, if you don't like it throw it away but don't ruin someones reputation because you had a problem with a product they gave you for FREE!
    The Picture Book Teacher's Edition

  14. Thank you so much for this post! Well said!! :)
    Thanks for stopping by my blog! I am your newest follower!
    AND your polar bear unit looks ADORABLE!! Enjoy your last day of break! I too go back tomorrow :(
    Wild About Firsties

  15. Thank you SO much for this post! It is so frustrating when you get one bad rating because it can bring you down from a 4.0 when you know it's a good product! I had someone dock me because their item did not print neatly (which I'm sure could have been something with printer settings). I also had someone say they did not receive all pages in the download... If they had contacted me I am positive I cold have walked them through the downloading process and/or emailed them a copy. I always make sure to leave nice feedback, especially if its free!!! These people are saving me lots of time and making my life a little easier :)

  16. Lisa, I compltely agree with you! It makes me sad when I am given a poor rating over something so silly as typo's. I love thise post and your latest craft! Pinning !!!

    Just Wild About Teaching

  17. Cute ideas! I am a new K teacher blogger! I am a Kindergarten teacher right outside of Nashville (Franklin). I am trying to get my name out there and for people to check out my blog. I am having a hard time tapping in to the teaching blogging world. Any advice/shout-outs would be greatly appreciated!
    Elizabeth Hall

  18. This polar bear unit looks fantastic! & I completely agree with your post, I hold my breath everytime I see the "someone left feedback" subject on my email list. It is so upsetting that we are not contacted FIRST, I wish TpT could change their policy about this. Anyway, I'm your newest follower!

    Science for Kids Blog