My Erin Condren Teacher Planner arrived in yesterday's mail!!!! WOOO!!!!! Decided to do a video for the unboxing so you can see what I selected for my own customized Teacher Planner.
If YOU are interested in getting an Erin Condren Teacher Planner. I have some coupon codes that will save you $10 - that's about the cost of domestic shipping (that I got and is the cheapest option) + a few more bucks savings. Two of them are general use and one is a teacher coupon code that expires. Please see below for codes...
:: Coupon Codes for $10 off ::Automated referral code so I can get product credits https://www.erincondren.com/referral/invite/andreaellwood0211-7505
Teacher Coupon code, expires midnight PST on 10/15/2014 =>TLP1014TXG9EJWUL
First Time ordering code, no expiration date =>WELCOME10
[If you want to read the rest of my review that would have been included in my video, click through to get through the break! Thanks!]
Some other things that I wasn't able to note in the video...
- The back cover looks pretty much the same as the front except the inside of it features the 2014 and 2015 mini calendars (vs. me having another picture of my family).
- The sheets on the inside of the planner (other than the dividers and section pages) are laminated at the coil to help reduce ripping when you turn the pages and/or as time goes by. This is a nice way to reinforce the pages but it does make the pages kind of a pain when you try and turn them sometimes.
- I have read reviews that the laminated covers bubble over time - and even as early as just a few months in! I understand that they still work just fine though and if you really care you can also order a new one for yourself.
- I still don't know how I am going to set up the weekly lesson planning pages. I had an I idea (that I thought would work well) when I first considered this planner but for the life of me I cannot recall what it was.
- I have a zippered pouch for my favorite pens - Pilot G2 retractable pens (in over seven colors) and I am using these to color code items on my monthly calendars. It's working out nicely and the ink doesn't bleed or smear too much.
- The extra pen loop that I purchased? It doesn't fit any of my aforementioned pens but a capped Ultra Fine Black Sharpie does fit. Had I known that retractable pens don't fit that well, I probably would have saved a few bucks and not gotten in. I know that the little pen loop is elastic and will stretch but... well, I have the the zippered pouch for a lot more pens so why bother with the pen loop. (Oh well...)
- It occurred to me that you could probably use the same planner for multiple years in a row (if you keep it nice unlike how I expect mine will end up). You could do this by just using post-it notes all over it. That would definitely make it thick and heavy but it could be done if you like the set-up and don't want to pay the price for it every year.
- If you are a guy or tend to have more masculine preferences (in terms of design), Erin Condren doesn't make that much that would suit you. She clearly markets towards women more than men and to elementary and middle school teachers more than to high school. I say this strictly from a perspective of her visual design style. I think this is a shame because her products do seem well designed but they are rather "frilly" and fanciful looking. If I were a guy, I wouldn't be so inclined to get a planner from her and honestly? I was even a little hesitant because I typically like products tailored more towards the taste of men (meaning: less frilly and fanciful stuff because I'm not super girly).
- Customer service for Erin Condren has been pretty sub-par and this same opinion is note throughout her company social media connections. I wrote them two emails through their website messaging system and it took me over a week to finally receive a reply. This wouldn't have been an issue if I had generic questions but one was one about their products that could have easily pushed me out at least a week from being able to finally place my order which would have meant I would have been pushed well into August before I could have gotten it. I did get my planner OK enough but if customer service is a concern of yours (which it always is for me) then Erin Condren might not be your best bet.
And I guess that's kind of it in terms of how I would have wrapped up my video of my review of the teacher planner. It would have made the video even longer than the eight minutes it turned out to be so this was probably a blessing in disguise for all of you to not be subjected to me rambling. Additionally, I ended up ordering another planner (as a gift) for a best friend but it's of the wedding planning variety rather than the teacher planning one. She should get hers within the week so if you are interested in her take on that, I will let you know an abbreviated review from her perspective.
My best intention (of course!) is to try and do at least one follow-up review about the planner once the school year starts and I am able to actually test it out and then I also want to do one more follow-up (Woo! Look at how ambitious and aspiring I am when the school year hasn't even officially started!!!) during the back half of the year to show you how the actual planner is holding up AND if I am still using it in the same way that I started out.
That about does it for me for the preliminary review of my new planner. I mentioned before that it took me about three months to find this product (sadly, that's not an exaggeration on my part!) and I am kind of jazzed that I finally have it in my hands and can try it out to see if it's worth all of the fluff and fuzz. Time to get to planning and finishing my supplies order for the year (I'm so behind)!!!