I had been looking for some material for my son who is in Grade 5 and getting pretty bored, but needed to find Canadian material. There are quite a few subscription websites, and I’m considering those but wanted something else. I found a site called FLORA.ORG however it looks like it is no longer in service, however from the Google cache (this is a direct link), I was able to find this data. Based on the cache the content is CC WITH SOME RIGHTS – you can view the cache here.
Here is the content from the cached page that I cut and pasted here, hopefully if you are searching for Canadian suppliers of educational materials, you don’t hit the dead-end that I did. I am presenting the information here from the cached content, I’v not checked any of the sites shown and I’m not affiliated with any of these sites. I have cleaned up some of the content and made it look more presentable.
NOTE – oddly enough I can’t reach the website however I can seem to reach other pages (try: http://www.flora.org/homeschool-ca/faq.html which seems to work, but when I tried http://www.flora.org I kept getting errors).
Canadian Suppliers of Curriculum and Educational Materials
136 Gablewood Crescent
London ON N6G 2Z9
Phone: (519) 471-1034
Fax: (519) 653-1563
E-mail: aplus@ (add total.net to complete the email address)
– Resources for Homeschool and Christian Families.
ABC of Reading
Darwin the Dragon Reading Program (and Vowel First Method, its equivalent for adult learners) is a method of teaching the basic skills of reading to students with learning problems, including dyslexia. A highlight of the Program is that it was designed to be presented by people who lack a background in teaching – e.g. parents in particular. To accommodate this feature, the Guide contains clear teaching instructions, detailed lesson plans as well as specific tutor-training instructions and exercises. The Program consists of a guide plus workbook, and three illustrated storybooks.
A EduSmart Educational Supplier
Email edusmart@ (add tutorsforless.com to complete the email address)
— Suppliers of educational resources, books, and games that are correlated to the Ontario curriculum.
Academic Distribution Services
528 Carnarvon St
New Westminster BC V3C 1L4 Canada
Email: sales@ (add ads-academic.com to complete the email address)
– Established in 1982 as the Canadian distributor for Alpha Omega curriculum. They still sell Alpha Omega material to schools and homeschools, but have expanded to include many other curriculum packages and educational products. Inventory includes items for/from: Canadian social studies for grades 3,5,7,8,10; Canadian French for high school; Alpha Omega; School of Tomorrow; Common Sense Press; Ideal; Saxon Math; Trend; Critical Thinking; and various other independent publishers. Free information package to anyone interested.
North America Toll Free: 866-414-2300
Email: info@ (add allpower4teens.com to complete the email address)
– Christian life coaching program for teens, designed to teach a variety of life skills through DVD sessions and workbooks covering 18 practical topics that include: defining values, building quality character, effectively solving problems, maintaining great health, setting and achieving goals, making and managing money.
3709 Chesswood Drive
Toronto, ON M3J 2P6
Toll-free: 1-877-63-ALPHA (1-877-632-5742)
Email: info@ (add alphatextbooks.com to complete the email address)
– Full service educational resource outlet specializing in k-12 textbooks, workbooks, ESL, teacher and classroom resource materials. Buy & sell new and used textbooks.
Art of Learning: Creative Educational Resources
Contact: Rachel Ross-Herbison
Email: artofl@ (add look.ca to complete the email address)
Home-based business run by a long-time (since 1994) homeschooling family in BC. Providing Waldorf-inspired homeschooling materials preschool to grade 12. Music, Art and School supply kits for p-8. Suggested reading for the developmental stages p-8. Support and information for alternatives in education. Email Rachel for further information, grade outlines, price lists, etc.
Resources for Dyslexia, Dysgraphia and Dyspraxia
A system of cognitive exercises, aimed at the development of foundational learning skills. Effective for dyslexia and other learning difficulties.
Contact: benetta@ (add mweb.co.za to complete the email address)
Bizzy B’zz Bookbin
Used Curriculum Book store
1985 Emsdale Rd,
Emsdale ON P0A 1J0
contact: Peggy Steer
email: bizzybzz@ (add bellnet.ca to complee the email address)
phone: 705-571-2178 or 705-636-0681
We carry curriculum, novels and other homeschool resources. If it’s used by a homeschooler, we will accept items on consignment. Curriculum, Games, posters, books, maps, plus… Will arrange pick up of consignment items where possible. Contact us for info.
3438 Garrard Road
Whitby, ON L1R 2C4
Phone: 1-877-894-5419 or 905-721-1916
Email: mail@ (add blossomingminds.ca to complete the email address)
Resources for fun and creative learning, many useful for unit studies. Catalogue is available online or in print. Cheque, money order or credit card accepted, and there is now an online shopping cart system as well.
Blue Mantle Educational Supplies
Home School Books and Curriculum ~ Christian Resources and Supplies
295 South Gower Drive
RR #2 Kemptville, Ontario K0G 1J0
24 hr Order line: 613-258-5309
Email: bmes@ (add bluemantle.ca to complete the email address)
– A homeschooling family business that distributes Christian books, resources, and homeschool curriculum. The Regular catalogue includes resources in the following categories: Science, History, Fine Arts, Languages, Geography, Mathematics, Language Arts. The Catholic supplement includes resources in the following categories: Mary, Children, Catechism, Apologetics, Family Life, Bible Studies, Religious Ed, Good Reading, Classical Curr, Lives of Saints, The Holy Father. The Catholic Gift catalogue includes videos, music CDs, board games and more.
Canadian Academic Supply
6240 Hawthorne Dr.
Windsor, Ontario N8T 1J9
Email: cassupply@ (add aol.com to complete the email address)
– Carries all the major publishers: ACE, Bob Jones, Alpha Omega, Saxon Math, Apologia, along with Microscopes, Science and Chemistry items, dissecting items, World Globes and Science Kits for each grade level. Books from more than 300 publishers. Customers can buy online with a credit card (Visa or MasterCard).
5727 60 Ave.
Rocky Mountain House, AB T4T 1J2
Email: (add casciabooks.com to complete each email address)
– Publishes homeschooling planners, menu planners, chore charts, incentive charts, homeschooling report sheets, and an activity advent calendar. Specializes in Catholic versions of these organizational products but some are non-denominational.
Worksheets and accompanying instruction sheets covering 13 Math topics, each consisting of 4 modules with 150-200 pages per module. To date there are over 10 000 worksheets, as well as assessment and review sheets. The CLSO (Concepts-Language-Symbols-Operations) approach is to follow the learner’s path of least resistance by starting with direct perceptual understanding through the visual (and/or kinesthetic, if using manipulatives rather than the images of the workbooks), and building the math procedures step by step through “scaffolding” that eventually leads to the underlying abstract concepts, rather than the other way around. The demo on the web site’s home page shows a very easy, step-by-step process for learning how to solve algebra problems. You can also ask for a free sample on fractions.
Cornerstone Learning Resources
#101 – 1924 Ambrosi Rd
Kelowna BC V1Y 4R9
info@ (add cornerstonelearning.ca to complete the email address)
– One-stop source for homeschool supplies from all publishers (if you don’t see it in the online bookstore, just request it from them); specializes in products that meet Prescribed Learning Outcomes in British Columbia; carries full curriculum packages from Heritage Christian Online School (HCOS); used curriculum and a Buy-Back program are available.
Current Developments Ltd.
Oliver BC V0H 1T0
Email: amelia@ (add vip.net to complete the email address)
– Creator and publisher of A Good Workbook, a step-by-step guide to grade 9 math, with clear explanations of the concepts and vocabulary, and practical exercises and their solutions. Illustrated with cartoon graphics.
Curriculum Services Canada (CSC)
439 University Avenue, Suite 2220 Toronto, Ontario, M5G 1Y8
Email: csc@ (add curriculum.org to complete the email address)
– Curriculum Services Canada (CSC) is the Pan-Canadian standards agency for quality assurance in learning products and programs. They are not-for-profit and provide services including development, implementation, evaluation, and accreditation of teaching and/or learning resources, and the delivery of web-based professional learning opportunities across Canada and internationally. CSC works closely with the Ontario Ministry of Education and many of its initiatives related to curriculum and to student success.
200 Denistoun Street, Suite 402, Welland, Ontario L3C 7E5
Telephone: (905) 788-9791, Fax: (905) 788-9137
– provides resources for math, reading, writing, spelling, auditory skills as well as resources for special education needs; offers a children’s series (Christian and Secular).
Donna Ward/Northwoods Press
5 Lisas Dr. RR#1
Woodstock ON N4S 7V6
Email: info@ (add donnaward.net to complete the email address)
– many Canadian educational books including historical fiction and several Canadian history/geography curricula which have been widely used across the country by home educators and were written by Donna herself, who homeschooled four children for 13 years.
The Science & Astronomy Super Store
3350 Dufferin St., Toronto M6A 3A4
Toll Free Phone: 1-888-777-5255 or (416) 787-4581
Toll Free Fax: 1-888-681-1079 or (416) 787-5140
– selection of science, astronomical, optical, anatomical and electronic test equipment and specialty tools; catalogues available in General Science, Telescopes, E-Sci Kids, Circuit Test, Jensen Tools and a Resource Centre. Visit showroom & store. Browse the on-line catalogue; online ordering.
Electric Library Canada
– a one-stop research resource, delivering reference information and data from thousands of sources–magazines, photographs, televison & radio transcripts; reference works; maps; full-text articles from over 200 Canadian & International newspapers and newswires; Note: there is a cost for this service.
Exclusive Educational Products
Head Office: 243 Saunders Road,
Barrie, Ontario L4N 9A3
Toll Free Phone: 1-800-563-1166 or (705) 725-1166, Fax: (705) 725-1167
Email: mail@ (add exclusiveeducational.ca to complete the email address)
– for Grades K to 12; specialize in design and technology, science and math providing manipulatives and resources; publish resources in English and French; developing resources for home education market; call and request a catalogue.
Fire the Imagination
21Suffolk St W
Guelph ON N1H 2H9
Email: firetheimagination@ (add sympatico.ca to complete the email address)
–Canadian Distributor for Jim Weiss’ award-winning storytelling audio. His recordings span all historical time periods and include works by GAHenty. Jim is also the voice behind Susan Wise-Bauer’s latest audio release Story of the World Volume 3. In addition to providing Jim’s recordings to homeschoolers, Fire the Imagination also distributes the Classical Kids series including Teachers’ Guides, Mozart Effect audio for improving memory and spatial abilities and The Best of Collection, a series of classical music recordings chosen by the Classical Kids creator, Susan Hammond.
– Complete curriculum for learning French, sold in downloadable modules. Sample lessons on the website so you can evaluate it before purchasing. Designed by experienced French teachers specifically for home learners, it is clear and easy to use and does not require previous knowledge of French. The lessons teach French in an easy-to-follow, gradual, step-by-step method with video & audio instruction that allows students to interact with the language in a fun and engaging way.
Sue Mykyjewicz, 55 Horner Avenue, Toronto, Ontario, M8Z 4X6
– We offer educational resources for K-12, as well as Adult Education and Special Needs.
Head Start Learning Material
5489 Highway 47
Uxbridge ON L9P 1R1
Email: irene@ (add headstartkids.com to complete the email address)
— A family-owned business operated by a certified and experienced Montessori teacher. Learning materials are sets of colourful cards, available laminated for more durability or non-laminated for smaller budgets. Subjects include Geography, Zoology, Astronomy, The Seasons, The Five Senses, Canada Cards (which are an assortment of pictures and symbols that are part of Canada’s geography, culture and history), and 3 Reading Programs.
Hearts For Home School Supply
24 Wellington Drive
Moose Jaw SK S6K 1A3
Toll Free Order Line: 866-293-6696
E-Mail: hearts4home@ (add sasktel.net to complete the email address)
Carman, Manitoba R0G 0J0
Email len@ (add heritageresources.ca to complete the email address)
– homeschool curriculum from many different suppliers; a lot of Christian curriculum.
Home & Hearth
Home Schooling Internet Catalog
1914 – 9th Avenue S.E., Calgary, Alberta T2G 0V2
Telephone: (403) 281-9644, Fax: (403) 281-5229
– educational resources for Preschool to Grade 12 for phonics, math, history, social studies, business/economics, music, computers, biblical study, language arts, science, geography, Canada, art, languages; also have unit studies, games, general resources, complete programs; view resources on-line or call and request catalogue be mailed.
HomeSchool and More
29 Donald Drive
Charlottetown, PE C1E 1Z5
Phone: (902) 629-1755
Fax: (902) 629-1780
Email: questions@ (add homeschoolandmore.ca to complete the email address)
Curriculum, novels and other resources for homelearning, plus books to help the homeschooling parent. Order online or by phone, fax, email, or regular mail. View the catalogue online or contact them to have a print catalogue sent.
Home of Canadian History Tunes, a CD of 25 original songs to help students of all ages learn about some of the most important events and people in Canadian History, including all the Canadian Prime Ministers up to Stephen Harper. Created and performed by a certified teacher who is also a professional performer and now a homeschooling mom.
Educational books and programs in early childhood education, poetry, and languages. The French-learning program Ecoutez, Parlez! and Spanish-learning program Escucha y Hablemos! each consist of 4 books + 4 workbooks for Beginner to Intermediate. Designed to be self directed. Kaleeka Press does not sell directly to the public but you can find a list of retailers on their website.
Kids Can Press
www.kidscanpress.com (click on link to Canadian site) or http://v1.nelvana.com/kidscanpress/KidsCanPress_3/KCP/f_home.htm
29 Birch Avenue, Toronto Ontario M4V 1E2
In Toronto: (416) 925-5437, Outside Toronto: 1-800-265-0884,
Fax: (416) 960-5437
– literature for many age ranges; books about Canada and its history, poetry, nature, science, sports, how-to and crafts; homeschool unit studies available; call and ask for a catalogue; can download catalogue from website.
Knowledge Probe Inc.
Mark Kolb, Aurora, Ontario writes educational software as a hobby and has a site with free math software and low-cost language software.
Ladybug Homeschool Supplies
2113 Edenwold Heights
Calgary, AB T3A 3Y2
Toll-Free Order Line: 1-866-498-5239
Toll-Free Fax Line: 1-866-234-3252
Online inquiries: fill in the online contact form.
— Educational materials and curriculum. Of particular interest is their service of putting together a customized curriculum package based on your child’s age, gender, interests, ability level, grade level, learning style (textbook learner or hands-on learner), your state or province, and whether you’re looking for religious or non-denominational materials.
The Learning House
Box 333, 61 Hamilton St.
Goderich, ON N7A 4C6
Toll Free Order Line: 1-866-875-5550
Email: info@ (add learninghouse.ca to complete the email address)
– resources for teaching children with learning difficulties, family building resources, unit studies and creative teaching resources, Bible curriculum, preschool material, math, phonics, readers, printing, writing, keyboarding, home education software, language study, science, history, social studies, geography, art, games that teach, just for fun resources and much more; call and request a catalogue or view online.
Louise Kool & Galt
180 Middlefield Road, Scarborough Ontario M1S 4M6
Toll Free Phone: 1-800-268-4011 or (416) 293-0312
Toll Free Fax: 1-800-482-7905 or (416) 293-9543
Email: service@ (add louisekool.com to complete the email address)
– early childhood materials; huge selection of educational materials for ECE & Primary Grades; free teacher activities on website; catalogue contains children’s toys and resources to use for construction & early technology, science, math, language, music & audio visual, also contains puzzles, games, arts & crafts and much more; can visit their showroom; call and request a catalogue.
– Offers a monthly mailing of children’s books, chosen based on your answers to a questionnaire about your child’s age and interests.
McGraw-Hill Ryerson Limited
300 Water Street, Whitby, Ontario L1N 9B6
General Inquiries: (905) 430-5000, Toll Free Order Desk: 1-800-565-5758
– resources for Elementary and Secondary education (Grades K-12) in a variety of subject areas as well as resources for higher education.
More Than Books
see Blue Mantle Educational Supplies
Educational and Creative Design Services
Box 130, Ridgeway, Ontario L0S 1N0
Telephone: (905) 894-9558
Toll Free: 1-888-803-7567
Fax: (905) 894-5795
Email: mail@ (add nallenart.on.ca to complete the email address)
Retail Store located at: Nallenart Family Bookstore, 355 Ridge Road, Ridgeway, Ontario
– provides educational and resource materials to schools and home schoolers; resources in French, Music, Art, History, Reading, Science; also has record keeping and organizational materials for home educators and other resources for parents and students; links to other sites from website; call and request a catalogue.
The North American Montessori Center (NAMC)
13469 – 27th Avenue
Surrey, BC Canada V4P 1Z1
joyce@ (add montessoritraining.net to complete the email address)
NAMC trains teachers in the Montessori approach. The curriculum manuals they provide for their teachers-in-training are now available for purchase by all teachers including home educators, for teaching children from birth to age 9.
201 Harbord St., Toronto, Ontario M5S 1H6
Toll Free Phone: 1-800-209-9182 or (416) 537-8334, Fax: (416) 537-9499
Email: (Inquiries) firstname.lastname@example.org, (Sales) email@example.com
– stocks books on topics ranging from childbirth and infant care to education and health, parenting skills and psychology. Can visit the store in Toronto or view the booklist and purchase on-line. Lots of books about education, homeschooling and learning resources.
Fort St. John BC V1J 4V7
Phone: 1(250) 785-6763 (Jane)
Phone: 1(250) 787-1276 (Beth)
Email: PLresources@ (add shaw.ca to complete the email address)
Educational resource store that serves Northern BC teachers and homeschoolers by appointment and all of Canada by mail order.
26 Prince Andrew Place, Toronto, Ontario M3C 2T8
Toll Free Telephone: 1-800-263-9965 or (416) 447-5101
Fax: (416) 443-0948
– resources for language arts, math, science, social studies, French as a second language, music; publishes and sells learning and teaching resources in all formats in all required subject areas across all Grade levels from K to 12 in Canada; also has learning materials for college and university; call and request a catalogue.
Portage & Main Press
(formerly Peguis Publishers)
Order From: P. Tyrrell Associates, Telephone: (905) 639-7320,
Fax: (905) 639-5748
Email: ptyrrell@ (add idirect.com to complete the email address)
– resources for hands-on science, beginning reading/guided reading, spelling, writing, poetry, art and more for the elementary level; call and request a catalogue. The website includes free downloadable lesson plans.
— Canadian-content educational resources including books, manipulatives, games, arts & crafts supplies, learning aids, and other play and learning materials in all subjects, plus classroom items such as child-scale furniture. Free catalogue on request, or browse and order online.
Mickey Eves, Author and Illustrator
134 Olive Street
mickey@ (add mickeyeves.com to complete the email address)
— Sept. 2005, released a new series of picture books called The Canucks, to aid children with Canadian geography. There are 13 Canadian characters, each named for a province or territory. In the first book the characters head off to explore Ottawa and what there is to discover during Winterlude. The other books in the series will each feature one of the other provinces or territories and some of the interesting things it has to offer.
S & S Learning
— Workbooks and learning resources with a focus on fun activities. Some products are available in French. There are many products in the Canadiana section, covering topics like Canadian history, Canadian geography, Canadian government, and Canadian seasonal. Non-book products include posters, board games, toys.
Coming in 2011: Best Practice Kindergarten Activity Book: Alphabet Letters and Sounds provides children with well-rounded alphabet practice by combining structured and engaging activities with the help of a parent/caregiver. Covering names and sounds of letters from “Aa” to “Zz,” features include: visual key words, actions, engaging worksheets, writing practice, hands-on activities, art activities, and language activities. Coming soon to major retail locations. To order advance copies call S & S Learning at 1-800-463-6367.
2323 Trafalgar St., Box 7214,
London, Ontario N5Y 5S7
Toll-free Fax: 1-800-363-3398
Email: web@ (add scholars.on.ca to complete the email address)
– resources for children from Infant up to Grade 10; can view catalogue on website and order resources on-line or call and request a catalogue be mailed; lots of curriculum and other learning resources for language, math, science, geography, French, arts & crafts, music; also have other supplies, teaching aids, puzzles, games and much more
Scholastic Canada Ltd
175 Hillmount Road, Markham, Ontario L6C 1Z7
Toll Free Phone: 1-800-268-3860 (anywhere in Canada) or
(905) 887-7323 (Greater Toronto Area), Toll Free Fax: 1-800-387-4944
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org – curriculum materials and resources for early literacy, reading, spelling, phonics, visual literacy, language arts, science, technology; catalogue available for literature available in French; other learning resources and supplies available for Pre-K to Grade 8; need a letter from OFTP stating that you are a homeschooler to join the Scholastic Book Club for discounts on books.
Scientist of the Day
A Classroom or Home Science Program
for Students Ages 6-12
by Linda Pierce Picciotto
A book of science experiments by a retired teacher who taught in an alternative parent-involved public school in Victoria BC for 25 years. This is where she developed and taught these experiments, so they are fully child-tested. The book includes everything you need to teach a science program at home, complete and ready to use.
– Program description: Students prepare, present, and record experiments in a way that is fun for them and develops many skills, increases their thinking abilities and knowledge, helps to develop positive attitudes toward learning and science, and builds self-esteem.
– Forms to photocopy: for record keeping, and for students to use when they draw and label pictures to visually summarize experiments they see or perform themselves.
– 46 science experiments: a wide variety of child-tested, clearly written and illustrated experiments, which are scripted so students will know when to pause to ask questions of their audience. Everyone will be predicting and hypothesizing!
Please see the website for more information, a look inside the book (including some sample experiments), and ordering instructions ($12.95).
SMARTS (Supplies, Motivational Aids & Resources For Teaching Store)
#36 – 2525 Yale Court
Abbotsford BC V2S 8G9
Phone: (604) 556-0111
Toll Free: 1-877-81SMART
Email: enquiries@ (add shopatsmarts.com to complete the email address)
– new as of 2005. An abundance of educational resources in all subject areas for educators and the homeschool community. Organized by subject matter, grade level, specific interests and by publisher. Aside from math, language, science, art, etc., their product line includes books on homeschooling, resources for Canadian history/geography/social studies, a section for learning differences, and a section for Christian curriculum.
Spectrum Educational Supplies Ltd.
150 Pony Drive,
Newmarket, Ontario L3Y 7B6
Toll free: 1-800-668-0600
Toll free Fax: 1-800-668-0602
Email: customerservice@ (add spectrumed.com to complete the email address)
– lots of resources and educational manipulatives for math, science, technology, language and primary materials for K-Grade 12; call and request a catalogue or view online.
St Francis Books
RR1 Cannington, ON L0E 1E0
Email: orders@ (add stfrancisbooks.com to complete the email address)
For a free catalog: trish@ (add stfrancisbooks.com to complete the email address)
– Specializes in Catholic homeschooling curriculum and resources, devotionals and Catholic reading material for all ages.
Technology Teaching Systems
122 Millwick Drive, Unit #3,
North York, Ontario M9L 1Y6
Toll Free: 1-800-265-3847
Fax: (416) 626-9489
Email: info@ (add tts.ca to complete the email addres)
– active, hands-on science and technology resources for elementary and high school levels; call and request a catalogue.
The Bookman Textbook & Educational Outlet Inc.
4910 Yonge Street,
North York, Ontario M2N 5N5
Email: email@ (add bookmantext.com to complete the email address)
– textbook and educational outlet; old and new curriculum as well as used books, student and teacher resources; mail order; biggest selection of K-OAC workbooks and textbooks.
The Learning Store by Lakeview
13815 Riverside Drive East
Windsor, Ontario N8N 1B5
Telephone: (519) 735-5005
Fax: (519) 735-7462
Email: lakevw2@ (add mnsi.net to complete the email address)
– the store offers Montessori learning materials in English, French and Spanish for Science, Reading, Grammar and Geography; can download catalogue from website, mail order or order online.
The Learning Tree Educational Store
Cumberland Shopping Square
3300 Fairview Street,
Burlington, Ont. L7N 3N7
Tel./Fax: (905) 319-2690, Toll Free: 1-866-319-2690
Email: info@ (add learningtreecanada.com to complete the emnail address)
learningtree@ (add sympatico.ca to complete the email address)
– great selection of resource books, manipulatives, educational games, etc. from major publishers. Can place orders by telephone, fax, email or letter or visit the store; shop from the manufacturers’ catalogues online.
School House Teaching Supplies Ltd.
2014 Douglas Street
Victoria BC V8T 4L1
– Full range of school products available through their online mail order catalogue or brick and mortar store located in Victoria BC. Mail service to rural areas is a specialty.
Thomson Nelson Learning
1120 Birchmount Road
Toronto, Ontario M1K 5G4
Phone: (416) 752-9448
Toll Free: 1-800-268-2222
Fax: (416) 752-8101
Toll Free Fax: 1-800-430-4445
Email: inquire@ (add nelson.com to complete the email address)
– books and other resources for various grade/age levels for language arts, guided independent reading, spelling, science and technology, math, social studies, reference books and materials and much more; call and request a catalogue
TLC Educational Supplies
Mailing Address: 16 Grist Mill Rd. Holland Landing, ON L9N 1B9
We carry a wide variety of products to challenge children with all learning styles. Our product line includes parent/teacher resources and a wide variety of books, educational games and materials for all subjects.
Upside-Down School Room
471 Eagle Street
Newmarket Ontario L3Y 1K7
Email: info@ (add upsidedownschoolroom.com to complete the email address)
- carry a wide range of educational products for K-12, including hands-on kits, co-operative games and multi-media resources. Emphasis is on providing appropriate curriculum for diverse learning styles, with a strong interest in learning disabilities, visual/spatial thinkers and gifted learners. Order by phone or online, pay by cheque, money order, or credit card.
Usborne Books in Canada
471 Eagle Street,
Newmarket, Ontario L3Y 1K7
Telephone: (905) 853-8887
Fax: (905) 853-3330
Email: info@ (add riverwoodpub.com to complete the email address) or pam@ (add usborne.ca to complete the email address)
– lots of resources for early childhood up to Grade 12; books and resources on science, history, mythology, art, space, geography, computer guides, language, how-to-make things, music and musical instruments, puzzles, literature, wildlife, geology and much more. Books can be purchased in book stores or through home consultants.
Direct instruction of mathematics at grade 10, 11, and 12 levels on DVD’s. For more information, send an e-mail to greichl@ (add nethop.net to complete the email address) or phone 250-499-5044
WAKE UP CALL!
I was working on my Twitter account and I usually follow back anyone that follows me. Had been doing so for years, until the other day when I hit 2,000 following and I could not add any more. Could not figure out why, so I went onto Twitter and was greeted with a message saying to the effect that I had maxed out the number of people I can follow and that there is some magic number of people I can follow based on the number of people that follow me but Twitter would not tell me what that ratio is but I had 1200 followers and 2000 following
I can understand the need to set these types of limits because Twitter – like Facebook, Google+, Instagram and any other social media platform out there wants real users not fake users taking up space — though they are generating hits in the search engines and probably throw up advertising when specific keywords are searched for on their platforms.
So I had to go through the tough task of un-Following several hundred of those that I was following. Manually I don’t think I could have done this but it was made much easier through the use of a superb tool called Twitonomy. I found all those that I was following that had not posted any tweets in over one year (there were almost 100), then I had to filter a few more — those that posted within the last year, but I selected those that didn’t post in over 6-months and that reduced the number that I was following even more.
I’m now down to 1,700
people accounts that I am following, and all these have Tweeted within the last 3-months. Of the 300 that I had to stop following, there is probably a very low change that they will un-Follow me as their accounts are dormant — but it is a possibility.
At the end of the day there are a few lessons I’ve learned:
- Although the number of Followers you have, people and/or accounts you are following and tweets is a numbers game – the numbers do not mean anything if those accounts are not engaging and interacting with others. Very high probability that the accounts were “robots” but you cannot be 100% certain.
- I built my account organically, I didn’t use any service out there to get followers – though I could have but the risk in this is that you set off some type of filter at Twitter which either limits your account or gets it shut down. Many services give you accounts quickly, it looks very odd if yesterday you had 1,000 followers and today you have 15,000 — not realistic. DON’T force feed your account.
- The name of the game is to engage your followers – either directly or by interacting with all of them by tweeting on a regular basis. Why? Because if they also hit that “magic yet unknown ratio” Twitter will stop them and they will go and un-Follow those that haven’t tweeted, just like I had to.
- Tweet items of interest – not crap and you will get re-tweeted.
- Realistically can you really monitor 2000+ accounts?!?! Nope!
If you have any other insights to share, please comment on this post. All comments are moderated so don’t be surprised if you don’t see it right away.
I came across an interesting infographic today at the website of Sharyn Munro Virtual Assistant.
If you are a small business, wondering whether you need customer service or are trying to do it all by yourself – pay attention! According to the infographic, put together by Five9 81% of companies that deliver excellent customer service, are outperforming their competition. This really does mean that if your company is in the service industry (which company isn’t) then you need to have a functioning customer service department. That does not mean hiring a few people, a manager and having go at it – it means you need a plan to develop a strong customer service department, evaluate their performance and grow the department as its needed.
Other interesting pieces of information that can be gleaned from the infographic is that 68% of customers that leave, do so because of poor customer service.
You may think that customer service is easy. It is, provided you have the right people in place – and it is not easy to get the right people, processes and procedures in place without a lot of effort.
What is the payoff in having a skilled customer service team? How about increased retention — I buy my clothes from only one or two stores because the service I get there is phenomenal! I can return items as long as 6-months after I’ve purchased them. I’m notified of sales, and when I drop into the store – they treat me well by answering questions, giving me advice on what works for my body style and what will hold-up.
A well defined and developed customer service team will also help decrease company costs – think returns, or simply negative publicity — the Internet has made complaining much simpler and with people having hundreds of friends on Facebook, thousands (or more) followers on Twitter and LinkedIn, negative publicity that starts to snowball can be devastating.
Your company also benefits from an increase in its value – by having more people knocking on your door you are going to generate more sales and revenues and if done right you could potentially turn your customer service department into a revenue generator.
Though many people are online, using sites like Facebook, Twitter and other social media through traditional methods like the home PC many more are online using tablets, and smart phones but the social media shift isn’t as big as you would think.
In fact the research that Five9 has done shows that only 29% of consumers prefer online customer service versus speaking to someone on the phone (and preferably in the same country the company operates in). While 29% is by no means a small number and you still need to handle some customer service through social media 71% of consumers prefer to have a telephone conversation — that’s just over double the number of people that prefer online customer service. I’m certain with the shifts we are seeing in technology and the age group using it this number will shift over the years as well.
Here is a real-life example of a situation that I ran into: I had an issue with a major Canadian restaurant chain and complained about my issues over social media. They responded, however indicated that they would prefer to speak to me over the phone. They created a case for me, and provided that case number and asked me to mention that when I called. They offered to call me as well, but I declined.
Second example – I purchased one of those one-cup coffee machines, however after a few uses the machine started to waste the single-serve cups. I contacted the company, and they sent me several coupons to purchase more single-serve cups. Nice but useless since the machine was the problem.
In the second example the company could have done a bit more such as a simple “we’re sorry – please return the machine as it is still under warranty, oh and here is a $20.00 off coupon for the next model up and coupon for a starter set of single-serve cups”. They could have enticed me to spend more money on a better machine. In the end, I returned the machine and gave the coupons away. They lost a customer.
Here are some other numbers to think about:
- 92% of customer service interactions are over the phone
- Contact centers handle over 45 billion phone calls per year!
Want to hear something shocking? 60% of customers will pay more for a better experience. Think about that when setting up your customer service department and how you will price your product or service.
On the flip side it isn’t all roses in contact centers either because 72% of people said that it takes too long to reach a live agent and 84% get frustrated when an agent does not have immediate access to their info (I would also assume that this also means that the agent could not help them because they had to be transferred and a whopping 94% do not like to be transferred more than once on a call.).
At the end of the day customer service is all about maintaining a human relationship with your clients and customers. Online solutions are not always the best option because if the consumer is not able to find a quick solution to their problem online 45% of consumers will abandon their purchase.
The final number from the infographic: 73% of American consumers spent more money with companies that provide good customer service. Think about that.
Scaled down version to your left.