Erin Cobb is many things. She’s a talented middle school teacher. She’s a mom of three boys and she’s a loving wife. She’s a talented Teacher-Author and blogger who shares her ideas and book-based approaches with teachers everywhere. And, yes, she is our most recent Millionaire Teacher! Erin’s celebrating this week by giving away freebies, prizes, and TpT gift cards on her blog.
Erin, you’re TpT’s most recent Millionaire Teacher. What makes your resources work so well for teachers?
I believe that my passion for teaching shows in the resources I create. This is my 12th year of teaching, and I have always taken that extra step to find the best way of relating the content I’m teaching to my students. So many teachers tell me that my lessons have helped to reignite their passion for teaching. When the teacher is having fun and enjoying the lesson, it shines through and students pick up on that. I believe that the high-interest level of my lessons and their rigor and relevance to today’s students combine with the ease of use for teachers to create something that both teachers and students love.
How would your students describe you? What’s most important to you as a teacher?
The best compliment I get from my students is that they look forward to coming to my class. I work so hard to make what I’m teaching matter to them, and I also make sure it’s different from what they’re used to. Changing it up and avoiding the mundane is so important! I also work hard to make sure that the climate in my classroom is comfortable for everyone and that my students feel valuable so that we can all be successful.
What do you see as the biggest challenges for teachers right now? And what are solutions?
Teachers today face so many challenges, and they vary greatly by region. In my area, I believe the biggest challenge that teachers face is a lack of community support. I feel like the public’s respect for our profession is at an all-time low as teachers are blamed for so many of the problems in education today. This lack of support makes teaching much more difficult! Teacher salaries make a huge difference when it comes to respect in the community, and I believe that this problem is especially bad in areas where the teaching salaries are the lowest. Increasing teacher salaries also attracts more qualified and experienced candidates, so it’s a win-win for the teacher and the community. One of the things I love about Teachers Pay Teachers is the spotlight that it shines on creative, effective teachers. Most of us teachers passionately believe that the challenges in education could best be solved by teachers instead of companies and politicians, and Teachers Pay Teachers is helping us to do that, one lesson at a time!
What’s the best part about TpT and your stunning success?
Now, this is an easy question! The best part about my TpT success has been improving the quality of life for my family. This has been my driving force all along. I became a teacher because I truly wanted to make a difference. TpT has allowed me to extend my passion far beyond my own classroom. The fact that I can support my family doing this seems too good to be true!
What pointers would you offer to teachers who buy your resources? How can they get the most out of them?
Organize your teaching by content or skill, and kill as many birds with one stone as you can. This is especially important when teaching ELA as there are so many different aspects of a successful ELA program. This is why I offer my pacing chart free on TpT. Teachers appreciate a yearly view of how I use the various resources I’ve created together as an ELA curriculum.
What are your favorite resources from other Sellers that you use in your classroom?
My absolute favorite purchase EVER from TpT for my own classroom is definitely Margaret Whisnant’s Word Trek Book Two: Vocabulary/Spelling (Greek and Latin Base Words) Full Year. I replaced my entire spelling program with this one because it teaches with Greek and Latin base words. It has turned out to be both the easiest spelling/vocabulary program for me to implement while being the most challenging and useful program for my 6th grade students! I’m pushing for the 5th and 7th grades at my school to use her other books as their spelling programs for next year, too.
I also use several of Margaret Whisnant’s novel units throughout the year. I always check her store first when I need one! My favorite is The Watsons Go to Birmingham—1963 Novel Study Teaching Guide.
Another purchase I’ve gotten many miles out of is mskcpotter’s Entire English Curriculum. While I was teaching 8th grade at the time of this purchase and mostly used it then, I’m still able to use many of the activities with my 6th graders.
And when I find my students need extra practice at something, it’s easy to grab a set of task cards like these on Analyzing Firsthand and Secondhand Accounts of the Same Event Task Cards by Teaching With a Mountain View.
Congrats on your hard-earned success, Erin! We love knowing that your teaching ideas are getting students excited about learning across the country and around the world. And we couldn’t agree with you more:
“One of the things I love about Teachers Pay Teachers is the spotlight that it shines on creative, effective teachers. Most of us teachers passionately believe that the challenges in education could best be solved by teachers instead of companies and politicians, and Teachers Pay Teachers is helping us to do that, one lesson at a time!” – Erin Cobb
Find out more about Erin’s 8 Ways to Get Middle Grades Students Excited About Reading, and check out 5 Questions With Teacher-Author Lovin Lit. Be sure to visit her store and blog, too.