Sunday, July 27, 2014

Classroom Supply Labels are FINALLY Here!

Hello everyone! I am so, so, SO happy to share a brand new (and highly anticipated) organizational product for your classroom on the blog today. Editable Classroom Supply Labels are finally here!

gorgeous labels and tips on organizing the classroom

Fans have been BEGGING me to list the Classroom Supply Labels on TpT ever since they saw this photo on Instagram several months ago.  I snapped it on a Friday afternoon on my way out the door to start the weekend.

(PS, are you following me on Instagram? You totally should. I often give sneak peeks of my upcoming projects and share glimpses into my personal life!)

About the Classroom Supply Labels

This editable set of classroom labels is available with a  bold, black background or with a clean, white background to conserve printer ink. Each set includes a PDF jam packed with pre-formatted labels in two different sizes: small labels measuring 3.3x1.9" and larger labels measuring 4.5x3.5". 

organize your entire classroom with Classroom Supply Labels

A separate PowerPoint file provides and editable version of the labels so you can easily create endless labels to meet your own personal classroom rules. Editing the files is simple: just replace the text in the text boxes (or add additional text boxes).

Preparing the Labels for Classroom Use

Using Classroom Supply Labels labels is simple. Just print your desired labels, laminate the pages and cut to separate. Then trim to remove any excess white margins, and attach the labels to any desired classroom objects. They are great for plastic bins, but will also work well on table boxes, file cabinets, student cubbies… the sky is the LIMIT!

GORGEOUS labels for organizing classroom supplies

I use the black labels in my classroom in my own classroom. Most of these bins are from Big Lots (go shopping for them NOW because they sell out FAST). The two different label sizes are PERFECT for when you have multiple box sizes in your own classroom.

I love how organized this teacher is. Read the blog post to learn how to recreate the look in your own classroom

When you use multiple colors of storage containers in the classroom (like I do) it is important to create some type of visual consistency to keep the classroom from looking too cluttered. This set of Classroom Supply Labels does just the trick!

great ideas for classroom organization!

The teacher's space can EASILY become the most cluttered space in the entire classroom. I love how easily I can store my guided reading supplies, materials for a week's worth of work, future book orders, instructional manuals and SO MUCH MORE neatly behind the tall bins from Big Lots and all visitors see is a row of magazine bins neatly lined up and clearly labeled.

gorgeous supply organization in this kindergarten classroom
The entire bookshelf looks simply stunning.

I love how organized this Kindergarten teacher's classroom supplies are

I even used the labels on the front of my file cabinets. I wanted to make a BOLD statement so I used the large label size. I was worried about using a strong adhesive that would damage my spray painted file cabinets, so I just used a little scotch tape in each corner. This was perfect for applying my labels and I am certain that the hold will be durable enough for my purposes. 

Looking for more tips and inspiration to help you get (and stay) organized this year in the classroom? Follow my Orgranization Made Easy Pinterest Board. 

Follow Maria Manore (Kinder-Craze)'s board Organization Made Easy on Pinterest.

Have you heard the news? I'm having a 2-Day sale in my TpT store. Everything is marked down 20% (including my brand new Classroom Supply Labels). The best way to beat the back to school blues is with a little retail therapy, so stop by my TpT store and fill your shopping cart!

SAVE 20% on all Kinder-Craze products on TpT

Monday, July 21, 2014

Earn Cash for Your School with Shoparoo

Get ready friends because I have some big news about how you can earn some extra cash for your school. PAINLESSLY. 
It's called Shoparoo and it's pretty much the best thing since Box Tops. 

Do you go grocery shopping?
Do you own a smartphone?
Do you teach or send your kids to school? 

If you answered YES to those questions, you NEED to know about Shoparoo

Earn Cash for Your School with Shoparoo. No more fundraising!

What is Shoparoo?

Shoparoo is a free app for smartphones and tablets that allows users to turn photos of shopping receipts into dollars for you school. It really is that simple. Every grocery receipt is accepted: from big chain stores to family owned convenience stores. All of the tracking is handled through the app. No parent volunteers are needed to clip, count, ship or record any information. Shaparoo keeps track of earnings for you! 

Getting Started with Shoparoo

It's easy to get started with Shoparoo is easy! Just download the FREE app from iTunes or GooglePlay, select your school, and start scanning receipts!

How Shoparoo Works

I know you're super-busy (and perhaps a bit skeptical) so I took some photos of my most recent receipt upload to Shoparoo. I'll walk you through the process so you can see how simple it is for you help your school earn fast and easy cash. 

Earn Cash for Your School with Shoparoo. No more fundraising!

When you first open the Shoparoo app, the home screen provides a quick overview of your school's financial progress with Shoparoo. My school has only been using the program for a few months, and in that time (as you can see from the graph above) we have earned nearly $225. Each receipt scan delivers a specified amount of "Roo Points" depending on the total of your grocery bill. All receipts earn a minimum of 10 Roo Points. As your school hits certain milestones, those Roo Points equate to cash for your school! 

The app keeps track of how many Roo Points other individuals within the community have raised for your school. The School Leaderboard always displays this information, as well as your own personal rank. In the above image on the right, you can see that I am currently ranked in 17th place for the year. If you don't your own spending to be public for other members of the school community to see, you can always sign up as an anonymous user. 

Scanning Receipts

When you've made a trip to the store and are ready to scan  your receipt, the process is fast and simple. Simply push the green camera icon that appears at the bottom of the Shoparoo home screen. 

Hold your phone flat and line up the receipt within the on-screen guidelines. It doesn't have to be perfect.
Shoparoo turns photos of grocery receipts into cash for schools!

Once the receipts is in position, push the blue "snap" button on the screen. If you have a long receipt that doesn't fit within the photo, you can take multiple photos of the receipt. Once you are all set, push the "Done" button on the lower right corner of the screen.  

Next, a preview of your scan appears and asks if the quality is good. At this point you have the option of retaking the photo (do this if your receipt is blurry) or submitting it. If all is well with the photo click "Looks Good" in the lower right corner. 
Shoparoo turns photos of grocery receipts into cash for schools!

As one final measure, users are asked about who purchased the groceries on the receipt (adult male, adult female, boy, or girl) and how you would rate the shopping experience (on a scale of 1 to 5 stars). Answer the questions, then touch "Done" to proceed.

Shoparoo turns photos of grocery receipts into cash for schools!

THAT'S IT! The process literally takes less than 15 seconds. 
the next screen provides a summary of your recent receipt scans. 

See the little clock beside my Meijer transaction on the top of the list? That simply means that Shoparoo is busy analyzing the data from that receipt and I haven't earned any Roo Points on it yet. In my experience, most receipt data appears within 24 hours. 

Shoparoo turns photos of grocery receipts into cash for schools!

Earn Bonus Points for Your School

As if free money for scanning receipts wasn't enough, you can also earn BONUS points for your school with Shoparoo. Once you sign up and log in to Shoparoo, you can invite your friends to join too. Shoparoo will credit your school with 150 extra Roo Points for every person that signs up using your referral code, even if they choose a different school to support. I added my own referral link in this post. (If you sign up for Shoparoo using my link, it will help BOTH of our schools.)

More Questions, Answered!

I know you may still have a few questions about Shoparoo and how it works. This video explains how Shoparoo offers "Fundraising in a Snap!". You can also visit the Shoparoo FAQ page for even more information about this great way to earn money for your school. 

Just in case you were wondering…
Shoparoo did not contact me to write this blog post and I am not getting paid in any way. I wrote this post because I genuinely believe Shoparoo offers a great, painless way to help schools earn some extra money and I wanted to spread the word so your school can benefit from Shoparoo too!

Earn Cash for Your School with Shoparoo. No more fundraising!

So what do you think? Are you ready to start earning cash for your school? 

Friday, July 18, 2014

Viva Las Vegas! Reflections on #TpTVegas14

As I reflect on my experiences in Las Vegas for the FIRST EVER TpT conference, so many words come to mind: people, sellers, friendships, Freebielicious, TpT, energy, joy… the list goes on and on. I have been back in Michigan for a week and my body has finally recovered from the time change, but my mind is still racing. As I explained in yesterday's blog post,  it took several days for me to write this post because I have been trying so hard to process my experience in Las Vegas. 

Fortunately, a picture is worth 1,000 words. So allow me to take you on a photographic journey and (hopefully) keep the words to a minimum. 

One highlight of the trip was FINALLY meeting so many of my Freebielicious friends in person. For many of us, this was our first face-to-face encounter. We share so many of our hopes, joys, ambitions, and sorrows in our little online community, but finally meeting so many of the girls face to face was HUGE. Several of our flights to Vegas arrived within a few hours of each other so we were able to exchange hugs and excitement right away. We rented a limo to our hotel so we could arrive in STYLE. I was beyond excited to meet Jennifer White from First Grade Blue Skies in real life. And of course, this was another chance to hang out with fellow Michigan blogger and TpTer, Marsha MaGuire from A Differentiated Kindergarten. She is one of my all-time best blogging friends and one AMAZING kindergarten teacher. 
Jennifer White, Maria Manore, and Marsha MaGuire, amazing kindergarten and first grade teacher-bloggers
Marsha and I were actually roommates on this trip. You will see a LOT of her in these photos. Whenever I get a chance to see that lady, I just can't pry myself away!

The Freebielicious girls had a booth (with free candy) during the I Teach K and I Teach 1st conferences. I spent a few days in the booth meeting fans and fellow bloggers alike. 
Freebielicious fun at the TpT Vegas Conference
We had so much fun at the booth! 
Do you recognize any of your favorite bloggers in these photos? Linda, Greg, Katie, Lisa, Tanya, Lita-Lita, Stacy and SO many more! 

top Kindergarten and First Grade teacher-bloggers

Even the dynamic duo of DeeDee Wills and Deanna Jump stopped by for a photo. 
I want to be just like them when I grow up! 

Kindergarten teacher-bloggers with Deanna Jump

On Wednesday night, Rachelle and Natalie from What the Teacher Wants hosted a Teacher-Blogger meet up. This event was packed with educators. The turnout (and enthusiasm) was truly amazing. Natalie also happens to be a very talented photographer. I just LOVE this photo that Natalie shot of myself with a few freebie girls: Marsha, Mary, and Jodi

top Kindergarten and First Grade teacher-bloggers

All night long, people came up and asked if my dress was from Stitch Fix. It wasn't! It was actually a $20 bargain dress from TJ Maxx, but I loved that everyone naturally assumed that Stitch Fix had styled me. (PS if you don't know about Stitch Fix, you are missing out! These blog posts will catch you up in a jiffy!)

I also finally got to meet the ever-so-sweet Laura Martin!
top Kindergarten and First Grade teacher-bloggers

My night was made complete when I was able to hug Cara Caroll with her heart the size of Texas! 
top Kindergarten and First Grade teacher-bloggers

The following night, I went to a hypnotist show with several of the Freeblielicious girls, their husbands, and many other bloggy friends. Viva Las Vegas!
Teacher bloggers in Vegas

The First-Ever Teachers Pay Teachers Sellers Conference

On Friday, the big day had finally arrived! It was time to attend the first-ever Teachers Pay Teachers conference! One of the highlights from my trip was definitely being able to meet Paul Edelman, the founder of Teachers Pay Teachers. His vision for an unprecedented way to empower creativity and the entrepreneurial spirit among educators has completely changed my life and I am forever grateful.

Maria Manore and Paul Edelman, the founder of Teachers Pay Teachers

This was actually a selfie taken during one of the TpT conference sessions that I attended with Marsha and the adorable Annie Moffatt
 Kindergarten and First grade teacher-bloggers in Vegas

We even had time for a quick group photo of all of the Freebielicious girls that were able to fly out to Vegas for the event. It was WONDERFUL to finally be face-to-face with this very talented group of bloggers.
Freebielicious girls in Vegas

What I Learned at the TpT Conference

I have been SO busy talking about the amazing friends and colleagues I met during the conference, I haven't even mentioned what I learned! I attended sessions to help me build a marketing plan with help from Rachel Lynette, learn advanced Pinterest tips from Mel D, improve the visual appeal of the products in my store thanks to tips from Deanna and DeeDee, and I discovered a treasure trove of information about how to make the most of TpT search function thanks to from Ryan Van Meter at TpT and the wonderful Kelly Dolling

An important lesson to remember from all of this is to follow your dreams and passions; and to do so with honesty and integrity. The most successful sellers on TpT did not join the site to become wildly rich. They became TpT sellers because they had passion for their profession and ideas to share. They got creative, worked hard, and now have something to show for their passion and determination. 

That One Rule for following dreams and passion

Those were my takeaways from Vegas.
TpT Vegas travel memories

I'm linking up with Deirdre's Vegas linky party at A Burst of First! Come see what everyone else was up to during that amazing week.
TpT Vegas Linky Party

Thursday, July 17, 2014

This Introverted #GIRLBOSS is Still Reflecting on Vegas

Right before I flew out to Vegas, I listened to the audiobook of #GIRLBOSS by Sophia Amoruso. In it, the 30 year old entrepreneur and founder of Nasty Gal narrates her journey from Ebay seller to CEO of Nasty Gal, a wildly successful fashion retailer. The book is AMAZING and is a must-read for any woman that wants to succeed in the business world (as an employee or CEO). I can't stop talking about being a #GIRLBOSS.

Don't' believe me?
Just ask my fiancé.
The poor guy can't escape my #GIRLBOSS revelations.

#GIRLBOSS by Sophia Amoruso… a must read for any woman hoping to succeed in business

One message from #GIRLBOSS that continues to leave an impression on me is what it means to be an introvert. Sophia identifies herself as an introvert and explains that introverts are fully capable of socializing, networking, and being out in the world in a big way among large groups, but they process those experiences in smaller groups or when they are alone.

I loved every moment of my Trip to Vegas. I loved the hugs, group events, and meeting throngs of educators within a relatively short amount of time. I even found myself squealing with glee during many of these events. But my mind is still processing every moment of the trip while I sit in the peace (and relative solitude) of my little apartment.

An update on all things VEGAS is coming soon, I promise.