As the husband of a teacher, I know all too well that there are so many teachers out there that pay for school supplies for their students and classroom out of pocket. Whether its due to budget cuts at the school, or simply giving back to their students out of a generous heart, there was a clear need for an easier way for people to help. PickWish is a site that connects teachers in need of school supplies to friends and family that are willing to help.
Creation of something playful and friendly was important, as this needed to be a brand where people felt comfortable and welcome. A paper airplane helps create movement, as well as symbolizing shipping between a supporter and a teacher.
The front face of the website needed to get some really important messaging across. We targeted teachers as well as their friends and families who would be helping them. The main landing page encouraged teachers to sign up, and also helped motivate people to give back.
We also felt it was important to spread awareness to the fact that teachers are spending so much on their own school supplies. A “why help” page was created to showcase the problem that so many teachers face and explain why it’s so important we try to help them.
The other important page to design was the teacher profile. This would be the page that potential supporters land on when a teacher shares their profile, and it would also be home to a teachers main wish list. Teachers can fill out all their relevant information including school info, grades taught, and content areas. Supporters can add supplies to their cart, and continue through the checkout process to send supplies directly to the teacher’s school.
One of my favorite parts of any project is integrating the logo into the product through small animations throughout. We used the paper airplane icon in the loading screens in a few different ways. When viewing a teachers wish list and hovering over the “add pick” button, the airplane will turn into a plus icon. Little touches like this really help create an experience for the user that will make them want to keep exploring.
Loading animation with paper airplane used between screens.
Packing icon used after picking supplies for an order and preparing to checkout.
Button hover animation for a teachers wish list on a profile.
To launch, we created a few hundred postcards to generate interest among teachers throughout Wisconsin. Each card would bring up the question of school supplies to the teacher, and direct them to the website to learn more.
We also expanded the brand by creating social media graphics, displaying the type of supplies supporters would be sending to teachers, such as science supplies or books.
PickWish is still moving along today. It’s a passion project of mine and I’m lucky to have an amazing developer on hand to handle all the complicated stuff. While we don’t have quite as much time to work on it, there are so many more ideas we have that we would love to implement, such as expanding to a mobile app and more.