Category: Earn Money

Direct Sales as a Side Job for Educators

Direct Sales as a Side Job for Educators

With a variety of products and low startup costs, Direct Sales can seem appealing as an extra source of income for educators. With stints of “time off” throughout the year, a teacher may have more time to invest than other working adults, but is the time really worth it?

What exactly is Direct Sales?

Direct Sales companies use independent consultants to market a product directly to the consumer. Direct Sales goes by many names: network marketing, direct marketing, at home party planning, and, although incorrect, pyramid schemes. According to the Direct Sales website, there are over 18 million consultants of various products worldwide. These companies sell everything from make-up, jewelry, artificial nails, and health products, to athletic training supplements, romantic attire, and kitchen supplies. If there is a product a person likes, a Direct Sales company for that product most likely exists.

To become a representative of a company, one signs up under another representative and purchases a start-up kit that generally costs $100-$150. This pays for company products that one can have potential customers try at “parties” that are held at a host home to generate sales. These companies also have a monthly or yearly amount that one must sell to remain an active consultant.

What makes Direct Sales appealing is the “be your own boss” and “make great friends” mantra as well as the potential earnings. Also, if one truly uses and likes the company’s products, it can be appealing to become a representative and receive discounted products.

A true Direct Sales company is not a pyramid scheme. In a pyramid scheme, the money is made off the representatives buying large quantities of inventory. Also, in these schemes, a representative generally cannot make more than the person above them. In Direct Sales, the person one signs up under does receive a commission on their downline sales, but people in their downline can make more money than people in their up-line, so there is no “scheme”.

The Upside

As mentioned previously, if one truly likes the product a Direct Sales company offers, it may be worth it in the long run to become a consultant to receive a product discount. If one knows a few other people who like the product, the minimum requirement to remain active can be easily maintained. Along with product discounts, representatives can earn anywhere from 25%-50% commission depending on the company.

If one is a social person and does not have many other obligations outside of teaching, parties will be an appealing idea. These types of people can fulfill their social needs and get paid to do so. Also, the amount of money that can be made in Direct Sales can exceed a teacher’s salary if one works at building a strong customer base and has other representatives in their downline.

With breaks and summers “off”, a teacher may have more time than most working individuals to make a Direct Sales opportunity a legitimate side income. Also, being a teacher provides a larger network of individuals to host parties and tell about the product.

The Downside

Direct Sales is an easy business to start, but takes a significant amount of time and stamina to truly grow. What makes more money in these companies is recruiting other individuals to join the team. Once a person joins, he/she may not stay forever. The average time a direct sales recruit stays in on average is three months.

Direct Sales also adds another item to a teacher’s proverbial, already overflowing plate. Also, one month, one may not need anything and have to spend money simply to remain active. Speaking of money, one may have to spend more on items other than the starter kit to have a successful party.

The Bottom Line

If one decides to join a Direct Sales company, he/she needs to consider the cost and his/her individual goals. If one knows a few people who will buy the product beside themselves, it can be worth it to receive the discount. If one thinks that everyone will want to buy it immediately and he/she will make thousands of dollars in the first year, this person will likely quit due to frustration.

Direct Sales can be a legitimate side job if a person signs up knowing that it will take time to grow and find customers. However, if one builds a customer base and signs up a few other individuals, it can definitely be a legitimate side business that can pay for a nicer summer vacation or pay off more debt.

For a list of companies check out the Direct Sales Association website.

[P.S. Shameless Self-Promotion]

I am a consultant for Lemongrass Spa Products. The company makes 97-100% all natural products for everything that touches skin for everyone in the family including cosmetics, lotions, shower items, soaps, as well as men and baby products. Check out the following to learn more!
Instagram: @SGLemongrass
(Thank  you for your time! After all, aren’t all teachers looking for ways to make money on the side?!)
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Children's Consignment Sales - Save & Earn

Ways to Save & Earn at Children’s Consignment Sales (Even if you don’t have Kids!)

If your town is anything like mine, you will see advertisements for multiple children’s consignment sales, especially when the seasons change. After seeing the droves of vehicles at one of these sales year after year, I finally decided to see what all the fuss was about. After experiencing this sale first hand, I realized that there were ways to save and earn money at these events, and as a teacher extra funds are always welcome.

How the Sales Operate

What I did not realize about these sales is that they sell so much more than children’s clothes. They sell toys, books, electronics, bedding, cribs, car seats, strollers, shoes (all sizes), maternity clothes, and junior sized clothes.

To sell, one signs up as a consigner and labels all of the items to be sold; each sale has a specific way. There is generally a small entry fee and they take 20-30% commission. When the sale is over, just pick up the items that did not sell and the money earned. It is that simple.

Ways to Save

These sales rely almost solely on volunteers. Volunteers sign up for a two to four hour shift and can choose to work before, during, or after the sale. The trade-off for these hours is that the volunteers can shop before the public. If you want to save as much as you can, sign up to volunteer. Also, some of these sales have a “First Time Mom’s Club” where if one is expecting or has a child under one year of age, the mother can shop first without having to volunteer.

Another way to save is to make a list. Since these items sell for at least 50-90% off the retail price, it may be hard to not fill your bag full of all the adorable clothes. However, since there is no return policy, beware not to over buy, or you will not get the most “bang for your buck”.

Generally, on the last day of the sale, many items are marked 50% off or more. After buying all of the essentials, it may be worth your time to return and see what is left. If you have a little money left to splurge, getting items at an even deeper discount is completely worth it.

Ways to Earn

If you have children, selling their clothing items and toys will earn money; one simply needs to make sure they have the potential to earn enough to make it worth the time. If you only have a few items to sell that will barely cover the entry fee, it may not be worth the time. So what if you only have a few items, or do not have children?

Being a teacher can give one an advantage to earn more at these sales. When a sale approaches, ask students if they have any gently used clothes that they, or their siblings, have outgrown; this is especially helpful if one teaches elementary school. If at the high school level, it is still beneficial to ask because many of these sales accept clothing through junior sizes. Also ask if they have toys, books, or anything else the sale may take.

If you are involved in any other social group whether through a church or civic organization, ask them as well. The more items you have, the more potential there is to earn.

Going All Out?

This may be a stretch, but if you do not have any sales like this in your area, it may be worth looking into starting one. In my town, the individual that runs the sale keeps all of the profit since the entire staff is volunteers. This may be unrealistic with the time frame a teacher would have to work in, but it may be something to consider.

In Closing

These children’s consignment sales can be a great way to save an earn money. Below is a list of sales in the Tennessee/Georgia region and a website that has multiple cities to search. If you do have one in your town, but have never been, it is worth the time to check it out.

Chattanooga, TN:

http://chattanooga.jbfsale.com/sellView.jsp

http://dkdkgoose.com/chattanooga/

Ringgold, GA:

http://www.theboutiqueforaweek.com/

Cleveland, TN:

https://alc4kids.wordpress.com/

This website has multiple cities listed:

http://consignmentmommies.com/

Happy Savings!

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Teacherpreneurs: How Do you Find Time for your Business?

Teacherpreneurs: How Do You Find Time For Your Business?

It is no secret that teaching is not the best-paid job in the world. Thankfully what it lacks in financial reward it more than makes up for in other ways. The trouble is those other ways don’t put food on the table. This is where The Moneywise Teacher helps. It gives you great ways to save and make money.

But how do you find time to become a teacherpreneur while also being the dedicated teacher you want to be?

Finding more time in the day

I’m about to give you the secret to finding more time in the day.

There isn’t any.

Sorry ladies and gents but there are only 1,444 minutes to work with and no way around it.

Now that we have dealt with that bombshell it is time to reflect. Where are your minutes going? I suggest you experiment and create a simple audit of where your time is going. This doesn’t need to be fancy, a scrap of paper will do. Make a note how long you spend doing everything from grading papers to scrolling Facebook to doing laundry.

When you have the results, look at where you could make time savings and where you could use those savings to invest in being a teacherpreneur.

Ignoring what others are doing

Have you noticed how many super mums there are on the internet? The ones that home-school a dozen children while running their own business and travelling the world with a bikini ready body. Does that sound like you? Nah, me neither.

Comparison is not the key to success. You need to focus on yourself, your aims and your goals. If you want to make time to work on your business of an evening you can. If you think you don’t have time, and would rather work at the weekend that is fine too. Find your rhythm and what works best for you.

Being kind to yourself

As a teacher, you are unlikely to think of yourself as a priority. We are a selfless breed and so we struggle to make time for ourselves. Please listen to this next bit closely:

It is not selfish to prioritize your own wellbeing. You are no good to anyone in a heap on the floor.

Please, please, please make realistic goals and working habits. Maybe you can’t have it all at once. Would that be the end of the world? Would a balanced (relatively) stress-free lifestyle not be better for you, your students, and those your care about?

Being adaptable

Teaching may be your overarching superpower but with it comes the power to adapt. Don’t be afraid to try things out with your business and your working patterns. Review, reflect and refine as you do. It isn’t failing to change things around.

You can be a successful teacher and teacherpreneur. Be brave. Give it a go.

Are you trying to do too much? Audit your time and share in the comments what you’ve learned and want to change.

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The Real Cost of Higher Education for Teachers

The Real Cost of Higher Education for Teachers

According to the No Child Left Behind act and Common Core, public school teachers in grades pre-k through twelfth must have a teaching certification—typically the result of an undergrad teaching degree—and must partake in continuing education, earning a set amount of credits or hours per licensing timeframe.

Continuing education can take a variety of forms, including traditional college credits, seminars, or professional development courses, and specific requirements vary from state to state. Some states like Arizona require 180 clock hours, while others, such as Iowa and Maryland, require six semester hours. Then there are states—California, New Jersey, and Rhode Island specifically—that have no state regulations for continuing education, instead leaving it up to individual school districts to determine what its teachers need.




For many years, most school districts provided its teachers in-house training and workshops to help offset the expenses of continuing education, but as costs become higher and budgets become lower, this is not nearly as common and teachers are having to find—and fund—their own continuing education.

Why Continuing Ed?

There’s no doubt, the better teachers teach, the better children learn. Improving the quality of teaching students receive is the most important factor for student success. That’s why there’s such a focus on continuing education. It’s designed to help teachers improve teaching skills, learn new technologies, and find innovative ways to prepare America’s youth for the future.

Although there’s a huge range of styles and topics in continuing education, here are some common themes:

  • Anti-bullying
  • Character development
  • Incorporating classroom technology
  • Common Core
  • STEM promotion
  • Literacy
  • Special needs

Real-Cost-of-Higher-Education-Pinterest

The Traditional Master’s of Education

For some teachers, earning a Master’s of Education is the optimum choice, but for others it’s not. Graduate level courses tend to be more expensive than other continuing ed options, with the advance degree averaging from $12,000 for less expensive online universities to $200,000 and up for Ivory League schools. According to the National Center for Educator Statistics (NCES), teachers with advanced degrees earn, on average, 11 percent more in public schools and eight percent more in private than their BA-only counterparts. Over the years, that 11 percent adds up.

Yet for new teachers, earning a Master’s degree right out of undergrad may not be the best bet. Nearly 50 percent of school teachers quit teaching during the first five years, and that’s not good odds for that kind of investment. Instead of going straight through to graduate school, consider getting some real classroom experience. Make a commitment to teach for at least two to three years before deciding to pursue higher education. By that point in time, you should know if teaching agrees with you and if it’s something you want to do for the rest of your life. If so, start looking into colleges and universities. If not, give it a few more years before deciding. After all, there’s other, less expensive ways to earn those continuing education credits.

National Board Certification

For those who are looking for a certification that’s recognized across the country, the National Board Certification by the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards is the best choice. Given from the independent non-profit, this certification takes more than a year to earn and is the highest mark of professional accomplishment in the field of education. To be eligible, you must possess a Bachelor’s of Education and have at least three years teaching or school counseling experience, as well as a valid teaching license, in applicable. Candidates must complete a computer-based assessment and create a portfolio that showcases their abilities. The certification process does has a $2,500 assessment fee, but since it lasts a lifetime, it will more than pay for itself. Most school districts offer salary incentives for those who complete the process and some may assist with the fee. Some teacher unions, educational institutions, and educational non-profits also offer assistance for National Board Certification.

Federal TEACH Grant

The federal Teacher Education Assistance for College and Higher Education (TEACH) grant is a readily available grant for both teachers and students in the education field. You can apply for up to $4,000 per year, with a maximum of $16,000 for undergraduate studies and $8,000 for advanced degrees. To be eligible for the TEACH grant, an agreement must be signed that lists specific teaching requirements that must be meant within eight years. These include things like working in low income districts or in high demand fields. If the individual fails to do so, the grant becomes an unsubsidized Direct Stafford loan and repayment must begin.

Other Options

With thanks to modern technology, continuing education comes in a wide range of environments. There are online classes, weekend seminars, afterschool workshops, traditional classrooms, and self-study. Education for teachers has never been easier or more convenient. And although the cost of continuing education for teachers is going up, it’s making our teachers better and benefiting our students immensely.

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8 Top Grants for STEM Teachers

8 Top Grants for STEM Teachers

Although everyone understands the importance of science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) education in the classroom, the cost involved with being a STEM teacher makes many question its benefits.

There’s expensive lab equipment. There are chemicals, tools, and supplies. Then there’s the cost of continuing education and professional development, important in all educational disciplines, but especially so in STEM fields due to their ever changing growth and development.

Due to the promotion of STEM education in school, the need for innovative and dedicated STEM teachers is at an all time high. To encourage teachers who can develop students’ interest to pursue these fields, there’s a growing list of grants and awards available.

Here’s a list of the top grants for STEM teachers and what each entails.

1) ACS-Hach High School Chemistry Grants

Each year, the American Chemical Society offers $1,500 ACS-Hach High School Chemistry Grants to high school chemistry teachers who encourage enthusiasm in their students by enhancing classroom learning, promoting scientific exploration, and raising an interest in chemistry. Funds can be used for classroom supplies such as lab equipment or teaching manuals, or for professional development, outreach, or field studies.

2) AIAA Foundation Classroom Grant Program

The AIAA Foundation Classroom Grant Program is put forth by the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronauts and offered annually. These $250 grants are awarded to K-12 teachers who engage and inspire students by incorporating STEM concepts in the classroom in innovative and fun ways. The money can be used on a variety of things to enhance the learning experience, including software, equipment, and science learning kits.

3) Classroom-Lemelson-MIT InvenTeams Challenge

Through Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s Lemelson-MIT Program, the Classroom-Lemelson-MIT InvenTeams Challenge grant program gives up to 15 groups of students and teachers funding to come up with an innovative, technological solution for a real problem the world faces today. The teams that receive the $10,000 grants are to use the money to fund the development of their idea, giving the teams hands-on experience with STEM concepts in real world situations.

4) Emerging Teacher-Leaders in Elementary School Mathematics Grants

One of the many grants offered by the National Council of Teacher of Mathematics (NCTM), the Emerging Teacher-Leaders in Elementary School Mathematics Grant is for Pre-K-5th grade math teachers who are utilizing their own teaching methods in the classroom and demonstrating innovation and drive for math education. To be eligible for this grant, which can be up to $6,000, you must be a member of the NCTM.

5) NSTA Awards & Recognition Program

The National Science Teachers Association (NSTA) gives a range of awards and recognitions to those inspiring students to explore and become interested in the science fields. For over 40 years, the NSTA Awards and Recognition Program has been raising awareness of the outstanding work individuals are doing in science education and awards are given in a variety of specialties, including agricultural science, biotechnology, and engineering. There are also awards given to new teachers, those who build public interest, and those promoting science education in informal or non-traditional settings.

6) NWA Sol Hirsch Education Fund Grants

Given by the National Weather Association, NWA Sol Hirsch Educational Fund Grants are designed for elementary, middle, and high school teachers who are exposing students to the study of meteorology, which is often under represented in science classrooms. The $750 grants can be used to purchase classroom materials, develop community outreach programs, or for professional development.

7) Toshiba American Foundation

The Toshiba America Foundation gives grants to grade 6-12 teachers to fund projects that allow students to “do science.” Awarded to teachers who demonstrate passion for engaging students in STEM classes, these grants have funded a wide range of projects including robotics, greenhouses, genetics and DNA, and 3D animation.

8) Toyota Tapestry Grants for Science Teachers

Together with the National Science Teachers Association, Toyota offers the Toyota Tapestry Grants for Science Teachers. Up to fifty $10,000 grants are issued to K-12 teachers who are demonstrating passion for increasing the quality of science education and getting students interested in the science fields. The grant money is designed to fund student-organized, community-based projects in the physical sciences, environmental sciences, or those that promote literacy and science.

Think Beyond STEM

When it comes to grant money, think beyond STEM specific grants. The US Department of Education has a multitude of initiative and grants available for teachers in all disciplines. Some focus on minority and low-income educational settings and others on those individuals and programs that demonstrate growth and initiative. Many local and national teaching organizations and non-profits also offer grants for educators, so be sure to check with any organizations to which you belong.

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Teacher Side Hustle

Every Teacher Should Know About This Side Hustle

So you’re a teacher and you spend tons of time pouring over lesson plans, activities, and resources for the young minds you’re teaching.

Whether you’re the super creative who does this daily or an occasional designer of a worksheet here or there, you have the potential to make some side money.

How you may be wondering? On one website, teacher-authors have made over 175 MILLION DOLLARS since their founding.

Around three million members browse their site for new materials for their own classroom. Teachers from any school can upload their materials to create their own small business.

How to Side Hustle

The best thing about this side hustle is that most of the work has already been done. All that’s left is a quick upload after registering with Teachers Pay Teachers. Membership is free for the basic seller but for even higher royalties, sellers can pay around $60 a year for the premium membership. You can put as much effort into your store, descriptions, and teacher instructions as you want depending on what kind of return you hope to see.

By uploading documents, lesson plans, and even teaching planners, teachers have the opportunity to make some sort of income out of this side hustle. It’s also important to keep a record of income and expenses incurred for tax purposes.

The simplicity of this website is what makes side hustling even more appealing. Each teacher gets a store (think Etsy) and can promote their store on their social media pages. Also, any of the current members can happen upon the store as well.

For the driven hustler, sellers can place ads that will appear on prominent places of the website to drive even more traffic and promote their materials.

It’s for The Whole School

Not only can individual teachers buy different resources, but the website offers services to the whole school.

This is attractive to different schools because they can set a budget and buy different materials fit for each grade and intelligence level to help students achieve where they need to be.

Teachers Pay Teachers does a great job of offering services that focus on the student and the teachers themselves as well. It’s an added bonus to work with a company that advocates for your line of work.

Through multiple licenses, great material has the chance to be bought for a whole grade or as a resource for all of the teachers in one school district. This creates a serious stream of income for the chosen seller.

What to Sell?

Almost every teacher is going to have something to contribute.

The website offers a wide range of products including physical goods. If you sell any of the following, it may be time to open up a store.

  • Lesson Plans
  • Task Cards
  • Worksheets
  • Classroom Décor
  • Activities
  • Teacher Planning Calendars
  • Hard Educational Goods
  • Printables

How to Build Up Your Store

If you want to take your side hustle up a level, you may want to start marketing your store. One neat way to bring more people to your store is by providing free resources and printables. Many side hustlers do this in whatever career course they are on to bring attention to what they offer.

If people like what they download, they may come back to buy more. Plus, who doesn’t like helping out a fellow teacher.
Another creative way would be by creating a business Facebook page for your store and updating it with new materials. A great way to generate likes or follows is by creating a contest.

By using gift cards that Teachers Pay Teachers offer, sellers can reward a lucky follower after hitting a goal for likes on their business page.

Not only does this have more people seeing your new material on Facebook but also gets the winner onto the Teacher Pay Teachers site. The hustle part of side hustling is promoting your products and getting your name out there.

It’s always good, as mentioned earlier, to promote your store on any of your social media channels. There are different Facebook groups as well to join where you can share links to any of your stores or product pages. Try searching for anything “teacher resources” related and be sure to check the guidelines for posting etiquette.

Some of the top sellers for TPT treat their stores as more of a business than a side hustle and have amazing marketing plans in place. If your store starts to really take off and people love what you’re creating, you may have the potential to create your own business. Top sellers tend to utilize Pinterest marketing and run their own blogs as well.

Why Side Hustle?

The best part of side hustling is that you’re self-employed. You decide how driven you want to be and the hours you want to put in. Whether you want to upload occasionally and let people find your store to adding content daily and promoting like crazy is up to you.

Even an extra $100 a month can sound appealing to several people. There are numerous teachers who are extremely successful selling their content as well who can make thousands a year.

It’s truly up to the side hustler on what they want to achieve. Usually what you put in, you get out of it.

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Teach Test Prep

Make Standardized Testing Work for You

Teachers: Consider Picking Up Another Class

Wait! Don’t click away just yet. I’ll give you a moment to wipe up the coffee you just spewed onto your computer screen.

I know, I know. The only reason you’re reading this post is to distract yourself from the stack of ungraded papers on the desk next to your computer. And the thought of adding another class – complete with another lesson plan to write and even more papers to grade – makes you laugh out loud. But hear me out. What if the class came with little to no planning or grading, and a roster of motivated students on top of that? Starting to sound a little better? If so, teaching an SAT/ACT Test Prep class might be just what you are looking for.

Extra Cash and Manageable Time

Test prep companies pay in the ballpark of $20 per hour for teaching SAT/ACT Prep courses. Not too shabby compared to most part-time work that is available. Typically, they are looking for teachers to work part-time in the evenings and on weekends (students have the same hours you do) for as few as five hours per week and up to as many as twenty. For a select few programs, teachers are required to take the test they would be teaching and meet or exceed a cutoff score. For most programs, though, your degree and/or your teaching certificate will get you in the door.

Opportunities Abound

When you think of test prep, there are probably a few names that immediately come to mind – Kaplan, The Princeton Review, and Sylvan to name a few. However, there are many others that may not ring a bell. A quick Google search in my hometown of Charleston, South Carolina turned up more than a dozen companies that offer SAT and ACT prep courses. This includes the well-known national companies, some lesser known nationals, and others with a smaller, regional scope.

One local option, College Edge, uses space in our school to offer an SAT Prep course. They hire our teachers to teach the course in the evening and on weekends, and they pay teachers $18 per hour to teach classes and $14 per hour to proctor exams. Courses run for six weeks with eleven 3-hour classes and four 4-hour long practice tests. Teachers work 7 or 8 hours per week and make more than $900 per course.

No Test Prep in Your Area? Create One!

Just because your school is tucked away in the woods or surrounded by cornfields, that doesn’t mean there may not be an opportunity for you to make test prep available for students and put a little extra cash in your pocket at the same time.

I worked in a district in rural Michigan where it was a 45-minute drive through the countryside to the nearest sizable town. You passed a couple of Tractor Supply Company stores on the way, but you didn’t see any test prep centers. However, that didn’t mean that there wasn’t a demand for a course, and there were plenty of capable teachers to teach one. So, an English teacher and a math teacher pitched the idea to their principal and a Sunday afternoon ACT Prep course was born. Students and their parents, hungry for the same advantages that students in larger towns had access to, eagerly paid to register their students for the class. Students showed remarkable improvement on the ACT, and the registration money helped pay the teachers. It was a win-win for everybody.

Build Your Bank without Breaking Your Back

I’ve seen teachers give up their planning periods and take on another class within the school day to enhance their salary. Every one of them said that the extra pay was great, but it wasn’t worth the demands on their time. No time for planning during the school day, additional papers to grade, and often another lesson to plan, quickly led to burn out. It was too much. I’ve never seen a teacher do it for more than one year.

With a test prep class, for most teachers, the added hours are just right. Teachers find the work to be enough of a departure from their traditional class load that it doesn’t burn them out, and they enjoy working with motivated students and sharing in their successes. Most of them have gone on to teach multiple test prep courses.

Why Not Teach SAT / ACT Prep Classes?

Now that you’ve had a chance to pour yourself another coffee, consider picking up an SAT/ACT Prep class to help pay off some of that holiday debt or to start saving for that spring break cruise. Right after you finishing grading those papers, that is.

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30 Days or Less to Freelance Writing Success - Gina Horkey Interview

Educators: 30 Days or Less to Freelance Writing Success? Interview with Gina Horkey

We are excited to announce that going forward we will be featuring regular interviews with financially savvy educators and other awesome personalities.  It is our hope that these interviews will serve as motivation and inspiration for you!   To kick things off, we share our interview with Gina Horkey, freelancer extraordinaire and creator of  “30 Days or Less to Freelance Writing Success: A Course for Brand Spanking New Freelancers.”

For this interview, we asked Gina a handful of questions relating to educators and freelance writing.  Without further ado, here are our questions followed by Gina’s compelling responses!

What qualities make a good freelance writer? Do you think educators are (in general) well-suited for freelance writing?

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I think you should probably enjoy writing at the bare minimum.

Being good at it or having decent writing chops is helpful, but can also be learned and improved over time. The best qualities are probably having a thick skin and fierce determination – success from freelance writing comes from putting yourself out there consistently and following up. I.e. marketing yourself and doing the work.

I think teachers and educators are definitely prime candidates for freelance writing.

As an educator you’re likely pretty good at teaching and imparting helpful information on students. Writing as a medium accomplishes the same thing – you’re communicating and educating an audience of readers and ideally helping them to improve their lives in some way.

How much can a part-time freelance writer expect to earn?

Of course I have to say it depends. 😉

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It depends on these factors:

  • Your niche. Some niches are higher paying, like personal finance or healthcare.
  • Your experience. As you gain experience (and samples) as a writer, you can command higher rates.
  • Your confidence. If you don’t believe you’re worth a certain rate, you won’t ask for it.

From my experience, new freelance writers tend to start out around the $30-50/article mark and work their way up. More experienced writers command hundreds of dollars per post.

Using myself as an example, freelance writing is only a portion of my diversified business, so I’d consider it “part-time.” I average $2,000-3,000 from just writing in an average month with just a few key clients.

Can you share a success story of an educator who successfully freelance writes?

There are actually a fair amount of teachers that have gone through my course, 30 Days or Less to Freelance Writing Success . Many of them have actually started a mastermind together for accountability and because they have so much in common.

Here’s Philippa’s story, for example:

Leaving teaching was not an easy decision to make, and working out what to do next was even harder!

I was an English teacher, so writing seemed like the perfect fit. Except, people can’t seriously write for a living can they?

When I realized that there was a market for writing website content, updating Facebook or creating tweets, I couldn’t believe it! This wasn’t even a career option when I was a school (which really wasn’t that long ago!).

Initially, I started VA work, but soon realised that I wanted writing to be my main focus. I decided to invest in Gina’s 30DOL course and it helped me to no end! It made everything seem so easy, and totally achievable.

As Gina was writing her 30DOL VA course , I had just landed my biggest client to date and I was thrilled when Gina asked me to create a case study about it for the course. It was amazing seeing “Lesson 10 – Philippa’s Story” pop up in my inbox.

That course, combined Gina’s blog posts and the Facebook group have really helped me move my freelancing up a notch. I now confidently cold-pitch regularly (teachers are not known for being sellers, not in our nature) and have this weekend been working on my latest new client’s website content!

I still can’t believe that people pay me to write.

It is a dream come true. I don’t make enough to do it full-time yet, but while working in my non-teaching day job, freelancing is keeping me motivated, satisfied and happy. I am on the way to the balanced lifestyle I want, and am much, much, much closer to it than when I was teaching!

Besides your own course, do you recommend any particular resources (websites, books, etc.) for educators looking to get started with freelance writing?

Yahoo Style GuideOne of the recommended resources that I came across was The Yahoo Style Guide! It’s a great (and very comprehensive) guide to help you learn how to write for the web.

My friend Sarah also has a site called, Life After Teaching, which helps educators that are looking to transition out of teaching find their way. She also has a book with the same name that you can find on her website.

Anything else you would like to say to educators interested in supplementing their income with freelance writing?

Most people let fear (or any number of excuses that disguise themselves as something else, but really are fear – lack of time, lack of direction, needing everything to be perfect, etc.) hold them back from taking action and pursuing a new direction.

Don’t let that be you.

Instead, punch fear in the face and do it anyway. When I started, I decided I was either going to succeed or fail hard trying.

Why not you, why not now?

Punch Fear in the Face

About Gina Horkey

Gina Horkey is a married, millennial mama to two precocious toddlers. Additionally, she’s a professional writer and online business marketing consultant with a decade of experience in the financial services industry. Gina enjoys helping other freelancers gear up to quit their day jobs and take their side hustles full-time. If you’re interested in starting a freelance career, take Gina’s FREE writing course to kickstart yours today! Click here to get the first lesson sent to your inbox.

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Educator writers wanted!

Educators: Write for The Moneywise Teacher!

Writers wanted!

The Moneywise Teacher was recently founded with the aim of becoming the go-to resource for educators on all things money.  We seek to regularly publish highly useful content that helps educators make and save more money! Beyond providing tips, strategies, and general financial education, we hope to help educators be able to better teach money skills.

That said, if you would like to write for us while helping educators, we’d love to help YOU make a bit more money.   We are hoping to publish articles from passionate and dedicated educator writers on anything related to both educators and money.   Here are a few sample themes we are looking for articles on:

  • Unique ways for educators to make or save more money
  • Great activities, games, toys, etc. for teaching money to kids (or adults!)
  • Educator discount programs
  • Great financial programs for educators – loans, bank accounts, credit cards, etc.
  • Technology/software/apps that can help educators make, save or teach money
  • Anything else related to both educators and money!

For more info or to apply, please visit our write for us page HERE.  We look forward to hearing from you!

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Wealthy Affiliate Review 2016: Monetize Your Passion!

Introduction – Wealthy Affiliate Review 2016

I think you will agree that most teachers deserve to make more money?

This website would not exist had I not found Wealthy Affiliate. It is my highest recommended program for teachers who want to make extra money online (really, it is recommended for anyone who wants to learn how to make money online).

The education, tools and support offered at the Wealthy Affiliate University are simply the best offered on the Internet. However, it is not for everyone and I encourage you to read my candid Wealthy Affiliate review for 2016 (and beyond!) that follows.

Wealthy Affiliate review for Teachers
One of my classes in Japan. I was happy but poor!

When I was teaching English in Japan I had some extra time on my hands, needed to supplement my income (sushi and karaoke added up!) and started to research ways to make some extra money online. I hate to admit it, but I fell for a handful of the many get rich quick schemes on the web. I am not proud to say that I spent over $3000 on these programs, with very little (if anything) to show. Well, other than the credit card debt, resentment and terrible experiences. These programs did teach me what not to fall for online, so I suppose I should be thankful for that!

Truly, wisdom is experience. I don’t pretend to be a wise person, but at least my bad experiences online can benefit others. At least I now know what works and what doesn’t work. Wealthy Affiliate has worked for me, and if you are motivated and have an entrepreneurial spirit, I think that it can definitely work for you too.

In short, Wealthy Affiliate has given me the tools and knowledge I have needed to succeed.  Since joining, it has allowed me to go from being a poor and underpaid ESL teacher in Japan to being able to make my own hours while earning an exciting residual income.  All while leveraging my passion for teaching and influencing others!

So, what is Wealthy Affiliate?

The Wealthy Affiliate (WA) University is an online business community and marketing training resource. It is NOT a get rich quick scheme, and does not offer an easy system to riches. If you are looking for that (or are a masochist), I can share with you some of the other programs I fell for!

Kidding aside, I would describe WA as an educational platform, technical resource and a HUGELY supportive community. It is an ideal program for a teachers (or anyone new to trying to make money online) who is willing to put in the time to learn and to work. Wealthy Affiliate will give you all of the tools, training and support you will ever need to supplement your salary by starting an affiliate marketing business online.

Wealthy Affiliate Review - Free Starter Membership

What exactly do you get?

You do not need to pay anything to give Wealthy Affiliate a try. The free “Starter” membership gives you everything you need to get started.  Check out the Wealthy Affiliate 2016 breakdown below:

Wealthy Affiliate Review 2016

Give the Starter Membership a Try

As you can see, there are two membership levels – “Starter” and “Premium”.  Again, the Starter membership gives you everything you need to get started.  Among the features of the Starter membership:

  • Access to 3 “classrooms” with over 500 training modules – Wealthy Affiliate offers the best training on the internet when it comes to learning how to make money online.  Their interactive modules will immediately get you engaged and will hold you accountable.  If you participate in the classroom trainings you will get hooked and will learn a lot!  I can’t say enough good things about the step-by-step trainings and video walk-throughs.
  • 7 days of live support from the owners – Get help directly from the founders of Wealthy Affiliate for the first 7 days and from the MANY helpful and engaged community members (there are currently over 400,000 members).  I am consistently blown away by how active the community on the site is.  If you have a specific question, it will usually be answered within a few minutes.  I will also personally help you in any way I can.
  • 2 free websites with free hosting – This is a super valuable feature that cannot be overstated.  If you were to pay for this you would be looking at somewhere between a $75 – $150/year cost.  With Wealthy Affiliate you get the websites and hosting for free!
  • More great stuff – including 30 searches of their “keyword research tool” that will be tremendously valuable when you learn about how to identify and serve your niche.
Click HERE to Claim your Free Starter Membership Today!

Is Wealthy Affiliate for You?

Truly, Wealthy Affiliate is not for everyone. It will teach how to BUILD and MARKET a part-time online affiliate business. If you do not have the time or are unwilling to put in the effort, than it is probably not for you. However (speaking from experience) I believe that any motivated educator or person wanting to supplement their income would have (or could make) the time to make this work for them.

You may be wondering why you should start an online business? If you are going to start a new business, why not open a bricks and mortar shop of some sort?

Well, the biggest difference in starting an online business is that you do not need any money to get started. When I started working part-time on my business online from Japan I was very close to being tapped out financially. I was truly living paycheck to paycheck and was carrying a lot of debt as well. There’s no way I would have been able to come up with the start-up capital to start a traditional business.

The Verdict – Wealthy Affiliate is Great For Anyone

See my summary 2016 wealthy affiliate review below with star ratings and a summary recommendation.  I hope you will give Wealthy Affiliate a try. I think anyone (educators included) who wants to make extra money online would benefit from Wealthy Affiliate in 2016 and beyond!

Moreover, I think teachers are particularly well suited to starting an affiliate business online. Affiliate marketing is really about educating and influencing people in (hopefully!) positive ways. Truly, it can be a great way to put your skill set to good use to help others, and make yourself more money in the process! Sign up for your free “starter” membership today!

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Udemy for Teachers

Make Money on Udemy: An Amazing Opportunity for Teachers

Udemy offers a truly exceptional opportunity for instructors.  In short, you can make money on Udemy by creating on demand online courses on anything imaginable.

Put together and teach your course once; If it’s well-received and otherwise successful you can get paid for that class again and again!

Here is more about Udemy from their website:

We’re the world’s online learning marketplace, where 9 million+ students are taking courses in everything from programming to yoga to photography – and much, much more. Each of our 35,000+ courses is taught by an expert instructor, and every course is available on-demand, so students can learn at their own pace, on their own time, and on any device”

Some Drawbacks…

Before you get too excited please consider some of the drawbacks. This would not be a fair review if we didn’t go over some of the difficulties for instructors using who want to make money on udemy by selling online courses.

First, putting together courses takes a lot of time, in terms of both planning and production. You also need to have the proper equipment, and be comfortable speaking on the camera/behind the microphone.  If you are shy or not willing to put yourself in front of the camera, Udemy might not be for you.

Can I Really Make Money on Udemy? How Much?

One final point, but not really a drawback is that unfortunately the Udemy compensation model is not as lucrative for instructors as it once was. Teachers who got in early were making a lot more money (90% across the board per course!) before Udemy changed its compensation structure multiple times, currently the structure is as follows:

About the instructor revenue share
Udemy operates under a tiered revenue share for paid courses. As an instructor, the two main revenue share scenarios that you can expect most often are:
Instructor Promotion → 100% revenue share (less a 3% administrative processing fee, 4% in the territory of Japan) on sales made by instructors where the student makes the purchase using an Instructor Coupon (either at full price or at a discount), which you the instructor create and control.
Udemy Organic → 50% revenue share on organic Udemy sales where no Instructor Coupon is used.

If you’re opted in to any of our marketing programs, e.g., percentage promotions, fixed price deals, and the marketing boost program, your revenue share can range from 25% to 97% depending on the scenario.

So, basically, you will make somewhere between 25-97% of your course fees, depending on the scenario.  In general, if Udemy is promoting your course for you, it will be on the lower end.  If you promote your own course you can make 100% – the administrative fees.  If you’d like a complete breakdown of what you can make, see the chart on Udemy’s site here.

Make Money on Udemy 2016

Udemy claims that the average instructor income is $8000.  Not bad, right?

Some make less and some a lot more.  Case in point: Jerry Banfield.

Jerry has earned over $300,000 with the Udemy platform, averaging over $6,000 per course he creates!

Jerry is truly an awesome instructor. As one of his students said:

“Jerry’s instruction is the perfect balance of passion, intelligence, proof of experience,
and calculated determination. He is a machine for success and helping other build the
successful lives that they have always dreamed of.”

If you are going to give Udemy a try, I highly recommend that you consider taking Jerry’s course, “The Complete Udemy Instructor Course”. This course will give you a great foundation as well as the tools and the knowledge you need to get started making money with online course creation.  It features no less than 84 lectures and over 10.5 hours of class time!

Learn more about Jerry’s course on how to make money on Udemy HERE.

With over 9 Million students utilizing Udemy, more instructors are needed!  I hope to see your course(s) there soon!

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