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In this new series, author and educator Aaron Quigley shows you how to stay up to date with the latest educational technology and classroom management techniques. Each week, he'll introduce you to a new tip you can use to be more efficient, and increase student achievement. Aaron covers concepts like the flipped classroom, Common Core Standards, and the role of social media in education. The series also covers a variety of productivity apps, learning management systems, and other technologies, using a project-based approach that simulates the real K–12 or university classroom environment. Check back often for new tutorials, every Monday with Teacher Tips.
Now that we've explored how to find lessons on TeachersPayTeachers, in this movie, we're going to discuss how to assess the quality of lesson materials, in order to make an informed decision, before buying. The first thing I'd like to do, and what I'd highly recommend that you do as well, is to take a look at the overall rating of the teacher. On the right hand side next to any particular lesson, you will see a Made by, and the name of the teacher that created the lesson. This teacher will have an overall rating based on all of the products that have on TeachersPayTeachers. Now in my particular TeachersPayTeachers store, I only have a few products posted.
And all of those products have been rated four out of four, so my overall rating is also four out of four. You can also look at how many other teachers are following that teacher. A high number of followers can be an indicator that they're creating high quality materials. The next thing I'd like to look at, is about the product itself, and that's the number of times it's been downloaded. If I take a look directly below the title of this particular lesson, I can see that it's been downloaded 1,828 times. Now, obviously, free resources are going to have a lot of downloads, and so this may not be the best indicator of lesson quality for a free resource.
As we come down the page, the next thing we're going to take a look, at is the product rating. This particular rating is for this individual product. If I'd like to understand the breakdown of that, I can scroll down the page, just past the product description, where I see the Average Ratings. After someone downloads and uses a lesson with their classroom, they can come back on a TeachersPayTeachers, and they can rate it on overall quality, accuracy. Practicality, thoroughness, creativity and clarity. If you find a lesson where multiples of these averages are not stellar, you may want to think twice, about downloading that particular lesson.
The last thing I like to check, are the user comments. Often, if there is an issue with the download, people will come to the comment section, and add a comment such as, I'm unable to download the file. Or, parts of the file are missing. If you see any of those comments, it's a good practice to contact the seller, to make sure that those items have been fixed, before you purchase. You can also see what other teachers think about the product, and how well it worked in their classroom. Using all this information together, you can make an informed decision, of whether or not a resource is correct for your classroom, in a small amount of time.
The peer review system of TeachersPayTeachers, makes it an excellent choice, for finding resources that are perfect for you, as well as your students.
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