It's time to learn how to make Teachers Pay Teachers products. Does any of this sound familiar — You’re prepping for an early morning English class, and you’re LeBron level determined to make 20th-century poetry seem every bit as exciting as the latest episode of Gossip Girl, which your Grade 8 class physically cannot stop talking about. Your strategy? Create a clip art-collaged worksheet with questions covering everything from figurative language to symbolism.
Yeah, you spend hours (and several matcha lattes) trying to figure out how to make Robert Frost sound like a very pre-social media influencer (not an easy task!), but like the incredible teacher you are, you get the job done to A+ standards… No surprise, your class goes off without a hitch, and your students seem genuine, almost weirdly interested in iambic pentameter (no iPhone confiscations? That’s a good sign!)
Now I’ve got a question for you, friend — When the end-of-school bell rings, what do you do with that top-notch worksheet that you poured time, energy, and precious caffeine into creating?
A. Squirrel it away in one of your 102,000 Google Drive folders thinking, “Maybe I’ll use this next year…”
B. Make a few minor tweaks to the worksheet then list it on Teachers Pay Teachers, so you can start making more money and saving for a family vacation to The Wizarding World of Harry Potter.
If you chose A, then this blog post was made for you. Deep down, you probably know that you could be getting a lot more bang for your classroom resource buck (and that teachers and students from coast to coast to coast could seriously benefit from all your hard work). But maybe you’re not *yet* sure about the nitty-gritty side of things (AKA ~how to turn that resource into a seamless product to sell on TpT) or you’re wondering how much money you can make. And whether or not it’s actually worth it.
Let’s focus on the first half of that conundrum because once you understand just how straightforward making, listing, and selling products on Teachers Pay Teachers is (for real, I’m about to take you from TpT newbie to novice in 5 simple steps), you’ll see that the cost of getting started is one of the smartest investments you can make. And that there’s truly no reason to put off increasing your impact and income — you deserve this 100%! Ready for me to spill my stress-free secrets for making a TpT product that sells like Creamsicles in August? Keep reading…
Let’s talk about something close to your heart… Nope, not perfectly sharpened pencils, fresh writing journals, or flair pens — Let’s talk about letters, specifically fonts because choosing the right ones is key to making your TpT products stand out from the crowd. Think about it, most sellers are probably going to reach for the lowest hanging fruit (AKA pre-installed fonts, like Arial or Helvetica — sidenote: if you’re using Comic Sans, it’s time to give that one the toss).
So if you take the time to purchase and download unique fonts, you will instantly differentiate your products while building out your brand. This is so important that in my membership, the CEO Teacher®, all members get two new fonts each month plus all the templates and tools needed to use in their resources, and they have achieved some seriously amazing results.
There are so many font options out there, and if you aren’t sure where to start your search, I’d recommend checking out Etsy or Creative Market. Both sites have a crazy amazing selection of fonts in just about every style imaginable. But a quick word of caution: stick to just a few — This will give your products a sense of continuity and really make them stick out in your customers’ minds! Some of my personal favorite font creators are Amy Groesbeck of AG Fonts and Amanda Newsome of A Perfect Blend — Those ladies nail it every time.
Once you’ve selected a few signature fonts, it’s time to take your product to the next level with some 10/10 compelling clip art. Let me tell you, clip art is the bomb. It will give your products the splash of personality they need to really engage your customers’ students. That said, it’s easy to get a little too carried away, so keep in mind that clip art shouldn’t distract from your content, but rather complement it and illustrate the point you’re trying to make.
Hint: leave all pictures of dancing weiner dogs off your math worksheets — I had to learn that one the hard way.
Speaking of which, it’s so important to check with your artist before using their work because the last thing you need is an angry email threatening legal action — we’ll definitely take a pass. Some of my personal favorite clip art shops are Creative Clips and Melonheadz Illustrating.
Alright, ready to learn how to combine your fonts and clip art into an irresistible TpT product? Keep reading…
Okay, corny, I know, but hear me out — When it’s time to put all your TpT product pieces together, PowerPoint is your BFF. I hear from tons of sellers who create their resources in Google Slides or Microsoft Word, but I’m telling you, PowerPoint is where it’s at.
It’s by far the most user-friendly, customizable software out there. You can make your clip art really pop using a variety of effects, colors, and 101 different style choices. On top of that, you can install your signature fonts and use them to make your resources look seamlessly branded and 100% unique to you. PowerPoint templates are also a total lifesaver when you're creating your products on a tight schedule. You really can’t go wrong…
Before you call it a day designing your product in PowerPoint, there are a few pages that all your TpT products need to have. These pages create a smooth experience for your buyers, which will keep ‘em coming back!
On top of that, credits that acknowledge the creators from who you got your amazing clip art and fonts are a must-have, and you should also add a page with an introduction to you and your store and links to all your platforms and related resources.
Don’t forget a table of contents and instructions on using your resource to make putting your product into action as easy as possible.
For printable resources, I recommend using Adobe Acrobat Pro. I love this program for many reasons, but especially for password-protecting your documents. And for digital resources, you’ll want to flatten the background of your resources (AKA. the part that you don’t want to be changed) before adding the interactive elements on top. This works for Google resources as well as Boom Cards and Seesaw activities.
By following these steps, you’ll create a ready-to-list product that reflects your awesomeness and start making more money and more of a difference.
If you are feeling motivated to dive into the Teachers Pay Teachers deep end, don’t forget to download Start or Expand Your Online Teacher Business — this free guide will give you the clarity you need to expand your products into a financially and emotionally fulfilling teacher business. ‘Cause let’s be real, you have everything it takes and then some, teacher friend, and once you step into your true power, there isn’t a single thing you can’t do… Yeah, even making Robert Frost the talk of the schoolyard…
Still looking for TPT inspiration and how to make products for Teachers Pay Teachers? Check out these articles to help you get started making an impact today!
Until next time, the best is yet to come,