If you think giving gifts to a teacher is easy-peasy, you better think again. It can be quite tricky—unless you want to add to her growing collection of scented candles, body wash, lip balms, and knickknacks gathering dust in the corner. Not that she doesn’t appreciate them, but sometimes there’s just one too many of the same gift.
Don’t commit the same mistakes that many parents make when school closes every year. Step up your game. It’s not about impressing someone with your gift. It’s about making sure your gift makes someone feel special and appreciated. It’s about making a difference no matter how small that is.
How do you make your teacher’s gift memorable? Three words: personal and practical.
Don’t get something just for the sake of giving. That’s a golden rule that applies anywhere you go. Put a little more thought into your gifts. Make serious effort. Aim to make someone really smile.
In case you need help, here are a few teacher-approved gift ideas.
A teacher’s day can go crazy in a flash. Between teaching and attending to kids, there’s just a gazillion things to take care of all at once in a classroom setting. To say teachers are overwhelmed and drained by the end of the day is one of the biggest understatements ever. Sure teaching is a joy but it can be exhausting too.
Inspirational prints are awesome pick-me-ups and easy-to-use decorative pieces. They instantly reinforce thewhys of teaching. In fact, our favorite inspirational hanging decor acknowledges the teaching profession as an enduring part of our lives.Alternatively kitchen towels with sayings and inspirational messages make great gifts too, especially if your kid’s teacher is also a force to be reckoned with in the kitchen. So, personal and practical, yes!
Teachers pay out of their own pockets for their school supplies. Why not refill their stash? Get crayons, pencils, colored chalks, markers, etc.
Get a good-sized cardboard box that you and your child can customize. Paint it, write on it, stick glow-in-the-dark stickers on it, tie a neat big ribbon—you get the drift. Be creative with your child. Your effort and the school supplies will surely be rewarded with an ear-to-ear smile.
A book is always a great idea.
If you can’t choose one that will resonate with the teacher, your next best bet is a book that will interest her class. Get a picture book or a children’s book for little ones or a science or an art book for older kids.
Reading reduces stress and provides mental stimulation. It is especially beneficial to help kids expand vocabularies, improve focus and concentration, and strengthen analytical thinking skills.
Look up online book reviews before making a purchase or ask for recommendations from family and friends. Better yet, ask your child what type of books they enjoy reading in class. Take him or her to the bookstore and have a little bonding session right there.
Do you bake yummy cupcakes or to-die-for blueberry cheesecakes?
Put those skills into good use and whip up a treat especially made for your child’s teacher. No, it’s not a novel idea, but if it’s mouth-watering and delicious, why not?
Baking is a labor of love. Whether you create a salted caramel cake or chocolate chip cookies, there’s no denying the effort that goes into the project; hence, you score major points for your yummy treats.
A heartfelt note or letter from your child and/or from you will melt a teacher’s heart for sure.
Take the time to thank her for looking after your kid while he or she was in class, for helping your child with her letters and numbers, for waiting when you were late picking up your little one, for reinforcing what you taught your child about manners, for being an excellent second momma.
There were probably times when she would rather be or had to be somewhere else. There were times she didn’t feel she could give her class her best.
Let her know that those were the times you triple appreciate her effort. Let her know you saw her passion and dedication. Let her feel you appreciate her and her contribution to your kid’s life.
If shopping for other people is not your thing, get a gift card or a voucher instead. If, like many other parents, you’re wondering how much you should gift a teacher, remember you’re not trying to impress.Give what you can afford and give from the heart.
It pays to take note that teachers prefer gift cards for stores with school supplies, so think Amazon or Target.
Oh, there are probably tons of things she’d like to do on her off days, but if she has kids, it’s safe to assume she doesn’t get lots of spare time.Why not give her the gift of time?
Offer to look after her brood while she takes off for an hour or two of much-deserved dinner, movie, or pamper session. She will appreciate having someone other than a paid sitter. She will feel less guilty about having fun. She will relax, knowing you too are a competent and loving mom.
There you go! Don’t let the school year end without showing much love and appreciation for your child’s teacher.