The HappyEdugator

The HappyEdugator
People don't care how much you know, until they know how much you care.

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Sunday, July 19, 2015

TPT Las Vegas Conference 2015 - My Biggest Take-Away

I am a little late in posting, due to health issues, but last week I was able to have a wonderful opportunity to meet and learn with other TPT sellers in Las Vegas, Nevada! If you are another TPT author/seller, you probably wish you had been able to go. If you are a buyer, you will benefit from the TPT author conference because you will see better products with you in mind. About 1100 teacher-authors from all over the country came together to learn how to create more and better products that you can really use in your classroom this year! It was fun, and I learned a lot. The mission of the conference was "Come Together, Go Further" and we added "Give Back." That's what the true spirit of TPT is...a professional collaborative community that wants to help teachers help kids!
I couldn't walk around this year, like last year, because of my foot surgery, but I wouldn't have missed it for the world. I rented a little scooter, and managed pretty well (except for when it ran out of juice and wouldn't recharge...more on that later).  Here I am on my "buggy"

Rachel Lynette was the keynote speaker. She is so sweet and values education and educators so much. She told her story, of how she began on TPT selling items she used in the classroom and books she already authored and sold on other sites, by answering an ad on Craigslist! That was back in the day! It was interesting to see how much TPT had evolved from a tiny one person website (Thanks to Paul Edelman) to what it has grown to be today. She found her niche in making task cards, and the rest is history. Not only have her kids grown since she began, but she pays it forward all the time to help teachers and authors help kids grow to their potential. There were so many people there, that I could not get my photo with Rachel this year, but I did get to say hello. She is very inspirational. 

I got to see Deanna Jump this year, too, and give her a big hug. She did not present this year, but her smile is so contagious. Love that big Deanna smile! I missed out on a photo opportunity with her this year as well, but that's okay. I still have the ones from last year. (If you wish to see my photos with Deanna and Rachel, just check out my blog post about the conference from last year.) 

I did get a photo with Paul, our founder, and Adam, our CEO. Check out my instagram photos of the conference to see them here: HappyEdugator on Instagram

I learned many things a seller should know about product design and promotion, but if you ask me what my biggest take-away from the conference was, I would have to say KINDNESS. As teachers, we wish to serve others and be helpful and kind. That's why we became teachers...I don't think many of us chose this profession for the money. (hehe) However, we have a strong desire to make the world a better place by living every day teaching others what really matters for them to be successful in life. 

For instance, back to my story about my scooter dying...and this is important...I went to the final meet-up on my dying scooter and plugged in to a wall near the back, hoping that it would charge up enough to get me back to the other end of the hotel to trade it in. I could not really walk around much, since my foot was still painful due to surgery. I wanted to go to the photo booth with my roommates, but I couldn't find them either. I tried to stand in line, but it was just too painful. As I was shifting my weight rather uncomfortably, one of the teachers behind me in line said, "I'll hold your place for you, and I'll come and get you when it is your turn." What a relief that was to be able to sit down...and so, even though I couldn't find my roomie, I did get a photo booth selfie (I tried to be silly):

Yet, my story of kindness does not end there. After I took my photo booth selfie, I retreated back to my broken down buggy. All of a sudden out of nowhere, a sweet voice asked, "Did you have anything to eat?" I didn't even know there was food! This lovely lady went and brought me a plate with a sampling of cheese and fruit, and I was so thankful for it, because I was getting hungry. 

So, two random acts of kindness from two different people made my evening, and reminded me that sometimes it is just the little acts of being considerate and kind to other people and aware of their needs that can make all the difference. THAT was my biggest take-away from the TPT conference. We truly did come together, to go further and GIVE BACK. 

That's what the sellers all did when almost half of them chipped in to give the corporate office an amazing gift, too! A lovely table for their new office. 

As I alway provide a link to a freebie at the end of each post, in order to give back, here is one you might like:

Inspirational Poster - Bird Theme

Next week I will post another summer art activity and some deals for back to school. 

Best wishes for success always, and remember to be kind! 

Deborah Hayes
aka HappyEdugator

Wednesday, July 8, 2015

Summer and the Fourth of July

I hope everyone had a great Fourth of July! I spent mine at home with hubby and the doggies, and the rain made us have to cook hamburgers and hotdogs inside, instead of on the grill. However, we enjoyed the down time and I hope you did, too!

If you are working a summer camp or program this year, you might be interested in:

Very excited about some new ventures! Started my Instagram journey a couple of weeks ago, and that has been fun, although it has taken some of my time. If you wish to get to know me on a more personal level, I would love to have you follow me!

Second, I am excited about going to the TPT Seller Conference in Las Vegas, NV again this year! I am looking forward to seeing friends there, old and new, and learning so many new things! Can’t wait! To celebrate, I have joined with an amazing group of teachers to bring you some fantastic deals for Vegas week, which I posting daily on my Facebook page, The HappyEdugator.

I am currently working on updating older products, and making new ones. I never seem to have enough time to do everything I want to do! I hope to be ready for BACK TO SCHOOL with lots of new and updated products!

Now, to continue with my Summer Fun Activities posts, here is ART Project # 2:

(Suitable for Kids 8+)

Sea Shell and Sand Picture Frame


Sand, Sea Shells, White School Glue (or Modge Podge), Picture Frame (can be an old one)


1.       Clean the picture frame to remove any dust or grease on the surface. Let dry.

2.       Mix the sand with the glue to make a paste. Apply this sand/glue mixture to the picture frame and allow to dry.

3.       Add decorative sea shells with glue and allow to dry.

4.       Put in your favorite summer picture and display with pride!
So excited to be in Vegas this week for the Teacher Blogger Meet Up and the TPT conference!

Again, thanks for stopping by and reading my little blog. Here is a freebie for you!

Have a great week!  Deborah Hayes aka HappyEdugator