by Lisa Reichelt, M.Ed. Parent Coach
Teacher Appreciation Week is coming soon and I bet you are looking to find unique Teacher Appreciation gifts for your children’s teachers. As a mom and former classroom teacher, I’ve given and received a multitude of Teacher Appreciation gifts. Some were unique and others were heartwarming and dear. I still drink coffee from a mug I received over 20 years ago! But finding unique Teacher Appreciation gifts is often challenging. The following ideas should help to stretch your thinking about ways to show your appreciation.
Letters To My Future Self
Wouldn’t it be fun to give your child’s teacher some homework!! This gift is perfect for teachers. It is a set of mail cards that have a prompt for the teacher to write about. The teacher fills in the details and seals it up to be opened at a later date. I can’t tell you how many times I have said that I should write things down to remember events and to share them with my family. Letters To My Future Self gives your child’s teacher the format and incentive to record life events. It is compact and easy to use. Now this is a unique gift.
Custom Artwork or Fun Vinyl Stickers
You and your child have spent the school year getting to know the teacher. You can use the information to personalize a gift for them. The artwork from Black Loon Studio is handmade and high quality.
Two options from this site are the Family Portrait and the Vinyl Stickers. The family portrait uses leaf prints to represent each family member (you can even include pets!) The prints are reasonably priced and custom made. The vinyl stickers are so cute and can adhere anywhere; computers, water bottles, car windows or bathroom mirrors. Choose from a nice variety of styles and customize them for your teacher’s unique interests. Choices include- camping, swimming, animals and fun phrases. Check them out. A set of 3 is only $10.
Personalized Teacher Inspirational Print
Another way to personalize the gift for your child’s teacher and add a little inspiration, is to order a Personalized Print using your teacher’s name. The print highlights the teacher’s name in the middle and adds inspirational adjectives that you choose in the columns along the name. It makes a great gift that can be displayed at school or at home.
Custom Cookies With A Message
These yummy shortbread cookies are marketed as a way to send a message for a birthday, anniversary, or birth announcement. I think they make a great Teacher Appreciation gift. You choose your own phrase to print on the cookies. Here are some ideas: “Thanks for believing in me.” “You’re my hero.” “A teacher affects eternity.” “You bring out the best in me.” I’m sure you can think of others. Wouldn’t it be fun to involve your child in picking out the message to place on the cookies? Giving a gift that can be shared and consumed is especially thoughtful and appreciated.
Donate To A Cause
We can also show appreciation by recognizing the important things in our teachers’ lives. Many teachers have special causes that are dear to their heart. These may be; fighting cancer or another illness, environmental causes or animal welfare, to name just a few. If you know a cause that your child’s teacher values, you can make a donation to that cause in your teacher’s name. The following is a gift idea for teachers who love animals, especially rescue dogs and cats.
Child Centered Ideas
Of course, Teacher Appreciation is a chance to teach your child about expressing gratitude (read more here) and thankfulness. So, it makes sense to have your child participate in the gift giving. There are a number of ways to help your child create a unique Teacher Appreciation gift. Here are a few I like:
Thank You Note – Your child fills in a pre-printed letter with their own thoughts. This is a touching way to show the teacher how much they mean to your child.
Fun Facts About My Teacher – Another pre-printed form where your child shares all they have learned about their teacher. The fun of this form is that your child’s personality will shine through.
I Wish My Teacher Knew – This gift will take a little organization, but really pays off. The decorated jar can be filled with notes from all the students in the class. Each student writes down something that they would like to tell their teacher about how the teacher has impacted them this year. For example: Ms. Smith makes me laugh when she uses funny voices reading to us. Mr. Webb writes nice notes on my papers when I do my work well.
Easy-Peasy Thoughtful Message – Kids are really talented at making videos. Why not have your child record a video of themselves telling their teacher how much they are appreciated? You could use the questions from the pre-printed forms mentioned above as a prompt. They could even create a painting, dance, song or rap for the video. The possibilities are endless!
These unique Teacher Appreciation gifts should get your creativity flowing. Join us on our FB group and share your favorite gift ideas.