Tips for making your purchasing easier, cost effective, fun, and exactly what you want! Yes, please!
But, first, I have a confession to make.
Way back in 2012 I made my first purchase on Teachers Pay Teachers, TPT. I clicked on that final button and then patiently waited for my resource to arrive. After checking my email about 8 times I realized something was wrong. Big mistake, I thought. And then, of course, I discovered that the resource was waiting for me to download it.
I had no idea. So, after much thought I decided to let you in on a few more things about TPT that you might not know! So, get ready, and let’s talk about TPT!
Making Sure are Buying the Right Resource
I know, I know, I have been there. You need something your students can do in a few minutes- like when they return from PE. Which means you need to find the item, purchase it, download and print it, and still have time to run to the bathroom.
But… when you have time, sit down and choose some resources. Find things in advance and really take a good look at them. Start with the preview.
Just look at all the information you can find right there beside the resource photo. This seller (me) has let you know the grade level I suggest, how many pages are included, and the applicable standards.
Now, click that preview button.
In some cases, you also have the option of a video preview. I think what you will find is that many, many resources have previews that show you everything that is included. You can see how many pages are in color, how many are guides, and how many will need to be printed. You can see the formatting, style, and decide if the resource will suit your class.
Then look at the product description. You should be able to read about what to expect from the resource. Many sellers will give you a list of the exact contents of the resource.
I also link bundles in my descriptions to let you know if there is a money-saving opportunity!
And, finally, if this is a resource you really will need, add it to your wish list. Then when your students are off to a special you can click through and make purchases you already know are going to work for you!
You Can Contact Sellers!
Did you know this? You can ask questions to the individual sellers! How cool is that- the teacher that created the resource will respond and help you make a decision.
Let me show you how easy this is!
On the opening page of every store there is a tab labeled “Ask a Question”. Click on it and just fill in your question. You can also find the “Ask a Question” tab on every product page.
I do have a few tips about this contact form!
1- Be specific in your question. If you ask me about a reading resource, tell me exactly which one. I have over 700 resources and many are about the same topic, so help me out with the name.
2- Sometimes I need to contact you via email rather than responding in a public forum. But, did you know I do not have access to your email address. That is why I always ask customers to email me!
3- Be patient with a response. I almost always respond within an hour, but if I am working that might not happen. You are connecting with a real person when you ask a question. That is pretty cool, so please wait to get that answer!
5- Please, please, please always use the question feature if you find an error in a resource. Hey, I can fix errors and do so immediately when one is pointed out to me!
Use That Search Bar
On the main TpT page type in the resource you need.
But did you know that each seller has a search feature for just their store?
I have tips about both of these search features.
Again, be specific. I searched the term “Math” and got over one million resources!
Whew! Who has time for that? So, one thing you can do is use the filter lists on the side of the page. Change the grade level and use more exact wording.
Instead of searching for Math, try “adding fractions worksheets”. This will narrow your search. Also, be aware that this search bar works like other sites. The most popular resources will show up first in the display you see. Scroll through a few pages or narrow the keywords even more. Sometimes, the exact resource you need is on page 10! (just sayin’)
And, yes, there is a search bar on my storefront. If you are looking for something specific, say “Pirates”, just type that in the search bar and you will find everything I have about pirates.
You can even type one word – like “Towers” and see all my tower challenges!
Whoa! Have you tried Custom Categories?
Did you even know about this? It is the coolest thing ever when you are trying to narrow a search, but really want to see an array of items.
Let me show you how this works.
This is my storefront and on the left side is the long list of custom categories.
If you need a poster set about the scientific method, just click on the category and you will see all 15 sets. What a great way to compare and choose what you need!
TPT has many free resources!
Every store has free resources. Here is something I have tried.
I buy a lot of clipart. Sometimes I find a store that I am not familiar with. So, I download a free clipart set. This lets me see the quality of the work and helps me decide if I want to make a purchase!
Updated Resources are available!
Y’all. Sellers update resources all the time. Seriously.
So how on earth do you find out if something you purchased has been updated?
I am going to show you and it is so easy!
Go to your account. Go to the tab that says “My Purchases”. Look for the gray box at the top and click on the down arrow.
Click on “Recently updated”.
Any resource that has an update will appear.
At the bottom of the listing, you will see words in red – “Newly Updated”. You can even click on “Description of Update” and see what the seller has changed or added. If you want to grab the update, just click on the red button that says “Download”!
Want Resources for Free?
Now, I know some resources are already free, but you can grab items at no cost or at reduced costs by leaving feedback!
Here is how to do this!
Go to your account page and click on “My Purchases”.
You can see the very first one on my page. Under the resource title, in green letters, it says “Leave a review”. Just click on that link. Fill in the review form and you earn 1 credit for every $1 spent on that resource.
You can also check your account to see how many credits you have saved. When you are ready to make a purchase, look for the “Account Balance” box on the checkout page and redeem the credits you would like to use. Save some money, y’all!
You are very likely to read that the resource is for “one classroom only”.
There are other specific things listed on the TOU page- depending on the type of resource.
Something to think about is that sellers are real people, working many hours to produce resources.
I often choose to make things that are difficult to make- because I know you need it and don’t have the time to make it.
I hope I have taught you a few new things about TPT today! It’s such a fabulous place to grab something very specific that you need quickly and don’t have time to create!
Just in case you can’t find it >>> MY STORE<<<