Wednesday, April 27

What the Teacher Wants

As a teacher, friends and family ask what I think is a good teacher appreciation gift every year.
So I tried to make it easy for them, and everyone else who's interested.

First off, if you follow these three simple rules, you probably have found a good  decent gift, however, if you still need a little more inspiration I have listed my favorite finds below.

Rules for Teacher Appreciation Gifts:
#1  DO NOT buy anything, and I mean anything
{did you hear me, I said anything} 
with the following words:
#1 teacher 
Best Teacher or
World's Best Teacher,
or any other variant of that saying!
 Yes, I'll keep it out on my desk for the rest of the school year
 {taking up much needed room on my desk},
 but it's going in the garbage as soon as your kid is out of my class!
Why? Same reason you don't wear your #1 mom shirt. 

#2  DO NOT decide you're going to be thoughtful and bring me in homemade treats. 
{Yes, I'm also talking to the PTA moms who do this on a school-wide basis and serve it for us in the teacher's lounge. We WILL try to avoid the lounge that day.}
Why? Because as soon as I look at that yummy dessert, I get a mental image of your child picking his nose earlier this morning and can't help but think that you also thought it was cute to let Johnny help you make that yummy dessert last night. Also, you seem very nice and all, but I've never stepped foot in your house and don't know if you're all that clean. Your child is the only representation I see of your home, and well, frankly, I'm not going there. To be fair though, I'm sure my kid's teachers feel the same way, so I just stick to store bought treats. So remember, you bring in something homemade, it will find a nice place in my garbage can at the end of the day.
{But sometimes I give it to the custodian who pissed me off last week.}

#3 Repeat this mantra over and over and over again until it sticks,
 "Gift certificates are good gifts. Gift certificates are good gifts. Gift certificates are good gifts.
 Gift certificates are good gifts. Gift certificates are good gifts." 
No, I will not think that you are being cheap or unthoughtful in any way. In fact we BRAG to our co-workers when we get gift certificates! I'm being for real. Doesn't matter to where either! 

Still need ideas??
Ten *Awesome* Teacher Appreciation Gifts that your teacher will LOVE!

10. Personalized lunch bag
Thirty-one insulated lunch bag, find a consultant nearest you.

9. Personalized water bottle
Personalized Aluminum Water Bottles

8. Note Cards or Memo Pad
Popsicle Pink Polkadot Notepads

7. Personalized clipboard
{Hmmm, I see a trend.}
Clipboard Altered 9.5 by 12  TEACHERS PET

6. Cute lanyard/ badge holder

5. Custom hand sanitizer bottle
Personalized Hand Sanitizer

4. Book plates
These are FREE to print at Our Humbled A{bowe}d

3. Stamps or Stickers

Lakeshore Learning

2. Fun Office accessories

I {heart} Sharpies!

1.  Gift Certificates

Coffee Shops, Restaurants, Book Stores and Teacher Stores are our favorites.

And of course, no matter what, even if you have nothing you can give but a note of thanks,
 those are the gifts we treasure most in our hearts. 
 { and keep us from quiting on bad days}



  1. Love this! I'm book marking it for future use.

  2. Kelly,
    I agree with 98% of what you have to say. I agree with "kill the kitchy!" They really are just a waste of money. And gift cards ARE a good gift. They may have once been considered as impersonal, but what's worse is getting something you will never use. But I must take issue with your baked goods comment. Quite frankly, that's plain rude. If I actually take the time to bake something for my child's teacher, and found out later it ended up in the garbage, I would be offended-at best. If you feel that way, okay. But I'm not sure you should be putting it "out there" in such a broad forum. And while I cannot speak for anyone other than myself, you can guarantee that things coming from my kitchen-as gifts-have not been touched by my kids. (Although, I know this will gross you out, but I thought I would put it out there anyway, even if little Johnny did wipe his nose then touch the spoon, the baking process gets rid of all germs. Heat is your friend. :-) Just my two bits...

  3. I have to respectfully disagree with your home baked goods comment. I am a former teacher and mom to five children. I am at the school often and know the teachers well. I think they know that my kindergartener does not reflect my home.

    I have made my apple bars several times for the teachers and get many thanks and requests for the recipe. The fudge I made for the teachers one year was so appreciated that she asked if she could purchase some from me. My daughter's music teacher said she looks forward to the fudge every and has to hide it from her husband.

  4. Christine,
    I wish there were more moms like you in the schools! First, I will say that IF I had a close relationship with parents/families I would, of course, eat their homemade baked goods. Your treats sound marvelous! You are the exception to the rule.
    However, MOST food we have to abide by this rule. Sad, but true. One city in Washington, the parents were using the same utensils to cook meth. and food with! The whole district had to ban homemade foods!
    So yeah, as teacher's we just abide by this general rule.
    Thanks for your comment Christine :)


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