“ Online shop selling teacher supplies such as stickers, reward charts etc. „
I first stumbled upon primaryteaching when I was looking for self assessment stamps when creating worksheets, and have been addicted ever since! They have some wonderful stickers and stamps, and reward charts which, lets face it, make teaching so much easier!! My particular favourite was the personalised stamps that can make marking batches of books that much quicker. Mine says 'Mrs Smith says you're a star!' and the children are over the moon if they recieve a stamp! (and when my husband is particularly good he gets a stamp too :0)) on my first order I ordered two stamps and a reward chart. Unfortunately only one stamp arrived, but with a quick email to the company they sent the stamp out the next day along with a present to say sorry for the mis up! (the present was a praise pad in the brochure for £2). Looking through the catalogue I could spend a fortune, even though things are reasonably priced. The 'scented stickers' have gone down particularly well in my class. Have a mooch on the website, it's well worth it and customer services are excellent.
As I may have mentioned before, I am a teacher of little'uns. To be specific, I am an outreach teacher of special needs little'uns. As cynical as I may be at times, it's a great job in which I see a range of children in different schools and work with a variety of learning difficulties.
In a lot of cases, special needs children can become very demotivated in an ordinary classroom setting. Regardless of how kind the teacher is, children almost always know when they are not as bright as their peers. The sensitive teacher will set individual targets for each child as well as doing whole class teaching, but many teachers don't have the time or the resources to implement this kind of practice. Thus, weaker children are painfully aware of when the rest of the class have 'got' a topic and they are still struggling with it.
Something, then, is needed to restore self-esteem. And, well, nothing says 'you're great' quite like a Wallace and Gromit 'cracking work' sticker. All teachers know that children love stickers, and they are a nice way to reinforce oral confirmation of a child's achievement. I used to buy my stickers from places like Edco or the larger supermarkets, but when you're giving out in the region of 12-15 stickers a day, this quickly becomes prohibitively expensive. And, also, children have a definite snobbishness about stickers. Generic smiley faces are ok, but they really like the 'cool' and unusual stickers.
As children come out to me for special needs support, there is a risk that they will demonstrate reluctance to attend due to worrying that other kids will know they have a learning difficulty and laugh at them. Thankfully, this hasn't been a problem for me for two reasons:
- I play games and other fun stuff during my lessons
- I have the best stickers
The latter is all down to the website www.primaryteaching.co.uk (or search 'primary teaching services' in Google). Given that I was spending so much on treats and rewards for the kids, I decided better deals were to be had on the internet, and I was right.
I'll deal only with the aspects of the website that I've used fairly extensively, as it offers a lot of products and to go through everything would turn this into the mother of all reviews. Plus, I know how clever you all are. If there's anything specific that you're after I don't doubt your ability to peruse the website to find it.
The website is easy on the eye and well laid-out. Featured products are on the home page with the product list to the left. The products include: stickers, notes home, certificates, customisable products, classroom displays, wristbands and prompt cards amongst other items.
At the top of the page are tabs that link to about us, contact us, delivery, order tracking, news, customer comments and your suggestions. I've been using this website for at least 6 years and I've never found a broken link or a page that doesn't load properly.
There is a brilliant range of stickers to suit every age group. There are Mr Men stickers, Wallace and Gromit stickers, dinosaur stickers, subject specific stickers, holographic stickers - the list is almost endless. Prices vary, but to give an idea of cost a sheet of 140 small (about the size of a thumbnail) square holographic stickers is £1.30. A sheet of 35 round 37mm stickers is between £1.30 and £1.50. All the stickers I've ever ordered have been brightly coloured and, if they have writing on them, it's very easy to read. Without sounding like I'm stating the obvious, the stickers are really sticky and don't tend to fall off jumpers or sweatshirts.
These are what the children really go for. It may not seem like much, but having a cola scented sticker appears to be serious currency amongst the under-12s. PTS offers two scented reward certificates and 12 different scented stickers, including cola, pineapple, jellybean, banana and coconut. These are priced at £1.50 for a sheet of 35.
*NB. Smelly stickers used to come packaged in individual wrap within the parcel, but the last few times I've ordered they've all been bundled in together. It's worth putting them in individual plastic pockets so that they retain their smell.
These are another winner. Choices range from 'well done' postcards to pads of notes printed with brightly coloured characters and a motivational slogan. The reverse of each note tends to be white, so I write here what it is the children have accomplished. This is a lovely thing for both children and parents; especially if the reward is for behavioural as well as academic success. The postcards cost £2.50 for a pack of ten and the praise pads are £2.95 for a 60 page pad.
These are just strips of printed glossy paper that can be made into a bracelet for a child's wrist. Various slogans and characters are available at a cost of £2.95 for 30.
Here you can order personalised stickers and stamps. There are 143 sticker designs that can be personalised. Font, colour and size of writing can be changed and you can opt to have 5 different sets of wording on one sheet of 35 stickers. The site will offer an image preview so you can adjust how your text will look. Obviously, if you try and fit a lot of writing on a small-ish sticker, it will become jumbled and hard to read. Short phrases work best. Once you've okayed your design and confirmed that you'll take responsibility for your own spelling and grammar gaffes, you can add your design to your shopping basket. This service is slightly more expensive than regular stickers but not outlandishly so at £2.50 for a sheet of 35. The ones I ordered were great: the design and writing looked exactly as they had in the mock up and the child in question was delighted to have stickers with his name on.
Personalised stamps are more expensive, costing £10, but the results are brilliant. I have one which has a picture of a sunglasses-wearing polar bear with the slogan: 'Miss X says I'm a genius' (my surname isn't 'X', by the way, although that would be kind of cool. I just don't want to tell you lest you all pile round my house expecting tea and cake). As with the stickers, it's important to spend time making sure you get the design and spelling exactly as you want them, because PTS will not take responsibility for your error. The stamps are available in a range of coloured ink and refill ink can also be purchased for £3.
This section changes regularly and is worth having a look at. I found dinosaur stickers (which all my boys absolutely love) for 25p for a sheet of 35. At certain times of the year, though, there will be little on sale.
Also in this section are the bumper packs, which include a good range of stickers and often come with a handy plastic storage box.
PTS offer bookmarks, stationery, badges etc, however I feel these can be purchased cheaper elsewhere. A pack of twelve pencils, for example is £3.95 and individual badges are £1.50.
It is clear from this section that PTS make every effort to keep up to date with trends in teaching and current curriculum requirements. They have, for example, produced a '2 stars and a wish' stamp, which will be familiar to any teachers whose schools are integrating assessment for learning strategies into their teaching.
You will need to set up a user account, which can be done either as an individual or as a school group. Order confirmations and any other correspondence will be via email. The website accepts all major debit and credit cards.
There is a minimum order requirement of five pounds and beyond that delivery is free. Delivery is only to the UK or Channel Islands. The website states that unless someone is there to accept the package it will be returned to sender, but in my experience the reality is that they'll either a) fit it through your letterbox, b) leave it with a neighbour or c) put a 'sorry you were out' card through the door and leave it at your local post office. Delivery is really prompt: I've never waited more than 2-3 business days for anything I've ordered.
In all the time I've been using this website I've never had a problem. Ordering is hassle-free, delivery is quick and reliable and the products are exactly as described. PTS do offer a no-quibble refund guarantee should you not be completely pleased with your order.
***That's all folks***
PTS is the Amazon of teacher-y websites: they offer an extensive range at reasonable prices, their customer service is excellent and their delivery service is quick and efficient. The only thing that I would take minor issue with is the fact that they always seem to include a paper catalogue and order form with any delivery. Given that all their products are available online, this seems a waste of paper and resources.
Otherwise, if you're a teacher, a playgroup/nursery leader, childminder etc. this is a reliable company with a user-friendly website. If you're an IT manager, though, you'd probably be better off on the Maplin website.