I know that the quest to answer to this question has been burning in your mind since last year, what would teachers actually like to have for Teacher’s Appreciation Day next week. I know through my own experience that this is a major decision parents all across the country face. Let me ease your burdens about this important issue, what to get your children’s teacher for teacher appreciation day next week.
First of all don’t expect the old reliable coffee mug to get it done. I have been a teacher for 9 years and I cannot tell you how many times I have gotten coffee mugs. Christmas, Halloween, Thanksgiving, whatever mugs filled with candy or pens/pencils, and though the idea is greatly appreciated, this practice can get a bit old, though the pens and pencils are always useful. Ditto on apple-themed gifts. Funny thing is most of the time I get pens or pencils as part of a present from students, parents, or the school they end up in the hands of the students I teach. That’s wonderful thing, don’t get me wrong. I will never turn down a pack of pens or pencils or even a couple reams of paper. That said, teacher appreciation day is meant to celebrate the teacher.
Here are a couple ideas that may make a better impression on a teacher:
- Gift cards to a restaurant-
Taking my wife and I out to eat is a wonderful thing. Taking my wife out to eat because I got a gift card is doubly sweet. (She does run a website name The Lady Prefers To Save, works from home, attends graduate school, and is just awesome, in general).
- Office supplies-
Though not as great as a gift cards, but hey, I got state testing coming up and pencils are going to be really important. The Dollar Tree would be a great place to stock-up on these gifts; also in preparation for next year, buy gifts for teachers during tax-free weekends!
- A handwritten note-
I know, I know….I hate greetings cards, too. I think they are the most thrown away present; aside from my wife who can probably come up with a way to upcycle cards into something or another. I don’t have the time to tell you how special/important you are or the money to get you something nice so I bought a greetings card to at least send you something. This is code for I went through the motions. That said, a nice handwritten note, from a parent, speaks to the heart of what I do for a living, I educate, and knowing that I may have changed your child’s life for the better is really appreciated.
- Bringing something nice for all your child’s teachers-
A plate full of cupcake, Nachos and cheese dip, or just something you can set up in the teachers’ lounge and grab a snack from between classes is so cool. I have seen parents tag team this so no one feels like they have to put out a lot of money to do this but it really makes an impact. With children who have multiple teachers for homeroom, electives, and the like, this is a nice way to not slight all teachers who help your child.
Whatever you decide to do just keep in mind that teachers have so many hats to wear during the course of the day as part of what they do. They have to be educator, baby sitter, referee, lunch lady, councilor, advisor, mentor, and friend. They come to work and have to deal with bureaucratic paperwork and attitude from students. When a parent comes in and actually does something to remind a teacher how important they are can really make someone’s year, even if it is said inside a greetings card.
Your friendly neighborhood bear,