About TeacherPop

Brought to you by Teach For America, TeacherPop provides real talk, tips, and activities that teachers can use in the classroom. Writers offer advice for all of the challenges new teachers face, sharing everything from difficult reflections on their darkest days to quick tips for sprucing up their classrooms and their lives.

WATCH: Students Write Holiday Wishlist for Favorite Teacher

Mr. Spencer’s high school class sat down to write a wishlist for their favorite teacher. The results weren’t exactly what they expected, but they all agreed on one thing—Mr. Spencer is a pretty cool teacher. Watch the video.

Want to make a real difference? Teach! Find out how at Teach For America.

Affordable, Last-Minute Gifts—Order by Dec. 19 for Holiday Delivery!

We get it: You’ve been reaaally busy, buried under final exams and keeping your students engaged in these frenzied days before break. Shopping for holiday gifts for friends and coworkers may have slipped off the to-do list, but never fear, it’s not too late!

TeacherPop put together a few affordable options. Best part? They are all under $25, and if you shop til you drop by Friday (Dec. 19), you’ll receive free shipping and delivery by December 25.*

affordable gifts

  1. Be Your Best Selfie Tote
  2. Moonstruck Chocolates
  3. Flutter Beauty Tall Canister
  4. Essie Winter Mini 4-Pack
  5. Sputnik Vase
  6. Philosophy Holiday Duo
  7. Porcupine Pencil Holder

Happy holiday shopping!

*Please check individual stores for specific shipping deadlines.


By |December 17th, 2014|DIY, Take a Break|0 Comments|

Motivation Monday: Dreams

Dreams Lupita Nyong'o

By |December 15th, 2014|General Pop|0 Comments|

15 Easy DIY Holiday Projects for the Classroom

The holidays are a-knocking, and your students likely need some distraction from sugar highs and thoughts of vacation dancing in their heads. Check out these 15 cheap and easy DIY holiday projects you can start and finish in your last days before winter break.

1. Bring some sparkle to your classroom with macaroni snowflakes. They can be hung from hooks with fishing wire or made into ornaments for the kids to take home.

diy macaroni snowflake

Detailed directions and image via Katy Elliot

2. Make a JOY banner with felt, scissors, and a glue gun. This makes a great backdrop for a holiday photo booth, too.

diy joy banner

Via Etsy and includes a pre-sewn kit with self-adhesive felt stickers for application.

3. Celebrate the festival of lights with colorful menorahs made of construction or wrapping paper and glue.

hannukah project

Via Pinterest

4. Transform your bulletin board into a game of pin-the-nose-on-the-reindeer. The kids can help cut out the shapes and take turns trying to pin their noses on the reindeer.

diy reindeer

Via Buzzfeed

5. Some inexpensive and delicious-smelling cinnamon sticks make great starters for trees, stars, and other holiday décor.

cinnamon sticks project classroom

Via Paper & Stitch

6. Felt snowflakes are a snap for older students.

diy felt snowflake

Detailed directions, image via paper[bullet]

7. Turn leftover cans into tin can snowmen with some wire, ribbon, paint, and felt balls.

diy tin can snowman

Via Pinterest

8. Collect pine cones for your kids to decorate with simple everyday materials. These sugar snowy pinecones require just egg whites and some sugar.

diy sugar pinecone

Via Whole Living

9. Students can make garlands out of just about anything. Here’s one example with colorful pompoms.

holiday garland school

Via Paper & Stitch

10. You can never have too many pinecone crafts for kids if you ask TeacherPop. This one gets really festive with globs of glitter.

diy pinecone activity school

Detailed directions, image via Activity Village

11. This penguin mask is perfect for wee ones. Bonus: It’s not holiday-specific. You can save this one for January when the mercury dips.


Detailed directions, image via Activity Village

12. Make a pasta necklace in traditional Kwanzaa colors with some dried ziti, paint, and shoelaces or string.

kwanzaa necklace

Via Activity Village

13. Felt can get pricey (see #7). Here are more snowflakes, made out of coffee filters, and easy for young kids to make.

diy paper snowflakes coffee filter

Detailed directions, image via The Pink Couch

14. Fuzzy white pom poms are a cinch to make, but word to the wise: snowball fights.

snowball craft diy

Detailed directions, image via Talk Crafty

15. Everybody loves a snow globe. Make a 2-D version with your students with super simple materials like a plastic plate, some cotton balls, construction paper, and markers.

snowglobe diy school

Via Pinterest

Happy, crafty holidays!

By |December 12th, 2014|DIY, Teaching Tips|0 Comments|

Frugal Friday: Hot Deals for Teachers


Frugal Friday is TeacherPop’s weekly round-up of sales for teachers on a budget.

Today (12/12)

LOFT: 50% off sweaters and an extra 60% off sale styles. No code necessary!

Asos: 30% off cold-weather gear for guys and gals.

NY & Company: 50% off everything with no exclusions.

Payless: Stock up on cozy boots and slippers—15% off everything with code ZZLIGHTS.

Ends Sunday (12/14)

Banana Republic: 40% off full-priced items with code BRSANTA.

Lands’ End: 30% off regularly priced merchandise and an extra 20% off sale and clearance. Plus, free shipping! Use code WINTER and pin 1244.

Ends Monday (12/15)

J.Crew: An extra 30% off select sale styles with code GIFTTHIS.

Madewell: Up to 30% off your purchase with code GOFORIT.

Barnes & Noble: Use code BNFAMILY at checkout to take 25% off any one item. Books make great gifts, people!

Kohl’s: Save 20% when you spend $100+ with code WREATH or 15% when you spend less than $100 with code HOLLY.

Hot bonus tip: There’s a new shopping tool for the fab and frugal. It’s called Shoptagr, and it notifies you when items at your favorite shops go on sale. Download the free browser extension to start saving.

Happy shopping!


Teachers, It’s Time to Get Your Code On


Once again, it’s that time of year to geek out—Computer Science Education Week! Computers are so much a part of our everyday lives, but did you know that fewer schools teach computer science today than 10 years ago? That’s crazy!

Well, the fine folks at Code.org and a handful of esteemed public figures (ahem, President Obama) are working to change that sad stat. This week, they are hosting the Hour of Code, a program chock full of hour-long tutorials empowering teachers of all subjects to introduce their students to computer science—and how to build technology, not just use it.


Last year, 15 million students participated in the Hour of Code. Almost half of all participants were girls, 8% were black, and 14% were Hispanic. Computer science students on average are only 18% female, 3% black, and 8% Hispanic. Help us keep closing that gap!

Check out the Hour of Code’s How-To Guide  to get started.

Don’t forget to tweet your plans @TeachForAmerica using the hashtag #HourOfCode. Happy coding!

Motivation Monday: Impact


By |December 8th, 2014|General Pop|0 Comments|

Happy Weekend, Teachers!

Houston 05_11.466


Don’t miss some of our favorite posts of the week:

Have a great weekend, everybody!