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Teacher Appreciation Week 101 10 Gift Ideas for Our Educators!

Rally the troops, whip out the glue gun, and bookmark this blog post, because Teacher Appreciation Week is right around the corner! This year, let’s go beyond the traditional shiny red apple and give our teachers something they’ll really love.

What's Teacher Appreciation Week All About?

Teachers play a pivotal role in the lives of our youth. They are constantly shaping our future by molding kids into adults that will be leaders, learners, world-changers and, of course, teachers. So, it only makes sense that we have set aside one week a year to appreciate our teachers.

We generally know what teachers do: ABCs, multiplication table, cursive writing, etc. But teachers don’t just teach, they influence. And influence impacts students beyond the walls of the classroom.

This influence is bigger than you think. In fact, based on the hours a student spends at school each day, compared with time spent at home, leisure time and time for sleeping, teachers have a 41% chunk of time to influence kids each day. We’re not sure about you, but that is one big percentage, and one big reason why we should be showing teachers our appreciation more often: for fostering children in all areas of development, beyond just learning a curriculum.

Teacher Gift Ideas

Below you’ll find creative gift ideas for educators that are personalized, unique and loaded with lovely teacher puns. We scoured the depths of Pinterest and looked to some of our favorite blogs for a list of gift ideas that are 1. Practical and 2. Able to be created with your kids (for moms and dads) or students (for parent groups).

#1 Edible Appreciation

Who doesn’t like food? Who doesn’t like food with some clever phrasing delivered by doe-eyed children? Sounds like every teacher's dream to us. So package up some goodies, tie a note to it saying something witty like “thanks a latte” and have your kid deliver it with strict instructions not to eat it at lunch by accident.

Example: Transformed Pringle Cans

With some colored construction paper, cutout letters, tape, and creativity, you can make your very own pencil surprise! Just take an old Pringles can and cover it in construction paper to mimic the look of a giant pencil.

Make a cone by twisting and taping a thick piece of construction paper and gluing/taping it to the top of the can. Then, you and your child can go shopping for small treats to put in the can!

Example: Soda-Lighted You Are My Teacher

We got this awesome idea from Tammy Mitchell Designs (get the free printables!).

Get a six-pack of your teacher's favorite soda drinks and attach a note that says, "I'm Soda-lighted that you were my teachers this year" and signed by your child. Or, take the pun a step further and get Mountain Dew with a note that says, "We appreciate everything you DEW." You could also go a step further and get custom labels on a six-pack of Jones Sodas. For PTO Groups, consider getting enough 12-packs of personalized Jones Sodas for all your teachers with labels that say "Thank You" (or another enjoyable pun!).

#2 Wall Prints & Classroom Decor

Teachers love to decorate their classrooms, so considering giving them something that will last all year! It can be a drawing that you and your kid did together, or maybe it goes a bit beyond the Crayola masterpiece and is something you have custom made.

#3 Mason Jar Goodies

Mason jars are the perfect packaging for any present, plus they double as reusable storage. Go to your local grocery store and grab a pack of mason jars, then let your little one pick out a bunch of small snacks, school supplies, flowers, soaps, etc. You can even decorate them by painting the jars, glueing glitter to the bottom (on the inside of course), tying ribbon around them or decorating the lid.

https://www.domestically-speaking.com/teacher-appreciation-favorite/
Example: Mason Jar M&Ms

The writers at Domestically Speaking say this is one of their favorite teacher appreciation gift ideas, and we have to agree! Fill up a mason jar with M&Ms and then have your child help make a list of the best aspects of his/her teacher. Then, assign each M&M color with one of those attributes, for example:

  • Green is for your motivation with homework
  • Blue is for your care and patience in the classroom
  • Orange is for your creativity
  • Yellow is for your humor and making me smile
  • Red is for the impact you've had on me this year

Conclude the note by saying, "You are a Marvelous & Maginificent Teacher, thank you for being my M&M" and signed by your kid.

Classroom Gifts & Supplies

It's no secret that most teachers still have to pay for their own classroom supplies. In fact, in a survey conducted the National School Supply and Equipment Association just a couple years ago found that 99.5% of teachers use their own money to keep their classroom supplies stocked and spend over $400 a year to do so. This means that Teacher Appreciation Week is a great opportunity to help our educators out by giving them some creative, personalized gifts that they can use for the whole class!

Example: Marker Bouquet
http://www.thehappyscraps.com/2012/05/dry-erase-marker-bouquet-teacher-gift.html

All teachers need dry erase markers, right? Well the folks at Happy Scraps have come up with an easy and inexpensive way to give a necessary gift, with a little extra flair.

Simply get a can, container, or basket and put some floral foam (styrafoam may also work) in the bottom. Purchase a fresh pack of dry erase markers (of course, other supplies like glue sticks, regular markers, or rulers will also work), and stick them into the foam. Get your child to help out by having him/her draw and color flowers on a construction paper. Then cut them out and use a hole-punch to make holes in the middle of flowers, big enough for you to slide them onto the tops of the upright markers. You can then add some easter grass, or other decorations, and write on the container "Thank You, Mr/Mrs./Miss (fill in the blank)!"

Example: A Laundry List (or Basket) of Books

Get a laundry basket and fill it with age-appropriate books for students. Deliver it to the classroom and watch the teacher light up! They will appreciate the addition to their libraries and it can only help encourage the children to keep learning.

Check out your local Salvation Army, thrift store, or mom & pop bookstore for some inexpensive book-buying options. Have your child pick out which books to purchase (bonus: challenge him/her to read a few before giving them to the classroom!).

Example: School Supplies Cake

Want to give a truly memorable gift that will last longer than anything you can bake? Check out the school supplies cake created by the minds at Come Together Kids.

http://www.cometogetherkids.com/2012/01/school-supplies-cake.html

To form the structure of the cake use two containers or storage bins, the first one being more flat and wide and the second one having some vertical height. Place the taller bin (upside down) on top of the wider bin and attach using tape or hot glue. Attach a tissue box to the top to finish of the tiered cake structure.

Then, simply start attaching supplies, such as pencils, crayons, glue sticks, hand sanitizer and whatever else you pick up, to your cake!

You can even add some flair with ribbon, fun borders, and a note from your child saying thank you for a great year!

Gifts From the Heart

Nothing says thank you more than gifts that are personal and come from the heart. These gift ideas really get your kids involved and can be incorporated into the classroom for all students to take part in Teacher Appreciation Week.

Example: Kindness Jar

Have each child in the class write memories they have of the school year and things they appreciate about their teacher. Put all the slips of paper in a mason jar, decorate the jar and let the teacher enjoy the uplifting messages for a long time to come!

Example: Decorate the Door

Have the kids decorate the door to the classroom with pictures, artwork from the school year, and thank you notes to the teacher! It shows thoughtfulness, creative effort and can be a great way to relive fun memories from throughout the year.

Create a Story

Have your child write a story about their teacher and their classmates that can be read for years to come. There are many companies that will take your child’s artwork and story and turn it into a hardback book! Check out Illustory to get started with your kids and create a wonderful memory that will last forever.

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Appreciate

Credits:

Created with images by Nicole Honeywill - "untitled image" • airunique - "school class school children" • Element5 Digital - "untitled image"

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