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Teachers Pay Teachers: Why The Site For Teachers To Sell Their Lesson Plans Is Thriving

Seven years ago, when Erica Bohrer, a first-grade teacher from Long Island, New York, started selling her lesson plans on the website Teachers Pay Teachers, she just wanted to make a few extra bucks here and there. Item on the site, a kind of Etsy for educators, go for an average of $3.50.

Good decision. To date, Bohrer’s sample classroom decorations, reading comprehension cards, and lesson plans have earned her nearly $450,000—and she now makes more money each year on the site than as a full-time classroom teacher.

The exploding popularity of Teachers Pay Teachers, which has paid out $150 million to its sellers since 2006, is at least partially attributable to the desperation scores of teachers feel as they try to devise lesson plans and teaching strategies that are aligned with the Common Core, the educational-standards initiative that’s been adopted by most states since 2010.