Teacher Appreciation Week is coming up (May 1 – May 5), and we want to help YOU be prepared! With Pinterest and Facebook overloading us with picture-perfect ideas and time-consuming projects, sometimes it helps to just step back and think simple. In the end, all that truly matters is that our kids’ teachers know how much we appreciate the hard work they do every single day!
Together with some of our Sister Site owners (many of them former or current teachers themselves), we have compiled a list of thoughtful, yet simple, ways to thank the teachers in YOUR life.
Keep the Kids Involved!
Sometimes in our quest for the “perfect gift”, we tend to forget that these women (or men) are our KIDS’ teachers, not OUR teachers. That being said, the kids should be involved in the planning, or at the very least in the execution of the gift. Plus, they love being involved! Here are some ideas that the kids can be super involved with:
1. Flower Bouquet: Each student brings in one flower of their choice, and all of the flowers get put together in a vase to make a beautiful bouquet!
2. Fresh Produce Basket: Similar to the bouquet idea, each student would pick out a produce item to contribute to the basket. Maybe consider assigning the kids a specific color to look for, which would help avoid having a basket with 17 bananas.
3. Paper Flower Bouquet: For this bouquet, each kid would make a flower (or if you’re just gifting it from your child, they could make 4 or 5), and you could also add their pictures to the center of the flowers. Stick them in a pot or a vase, and maybe add a few gift cards in the bouquet as well!
4. Handwritten Notes: It is always so fun (and unpredictable!) to see what elementary-school kids will write in a card. Again, you could sweeten it up with a gift card and a note from you as well.
5. Wear the Love! Have one of the parents show up before school and hand out stickers or badges to the kids before they walk in the door. Seeing all of those little faces wearing “I love Mrs. Smith!” stickers? Priceless! (You could even have the kids make their own badges to wear.)
In the end, it really doesn’t matter how much money you spent or how your gifts compare to the others in the room. What matters is that you have shown these teachers how much you truly appreciate their dedication to these children, YOUR children, on a daily basis.
A Little Something Every Day
Try to make the whole WEEK special for the teacher! Here are a few ideas of how to gift her (or him) each day of Teacher Appreciation Week:
1. Theme of the Day: Pick a theme for each day (office supplies, kitchen stuff, treats, flowers) and bring in a little gift for each one. This could work for a class-wide gift, or just from your child.
2. Teacher’s Pick: Have the teacher fill out a list of her favorite things (favorite candy, favorite coffee shop, favorite pens/markers, etc.) and bring one of those items each day.
3. Lunch: Find a way to provide lunch for the teacher each day (have a parent bring it in, send a fancy sack lunch with your child, or even call for delivery!). This could also be done on a larger scale, if the PTA could coordinate a lunch or breakfast for the teaching staff.
4. Help!! Get some of the other parents involved and volunteer to help out in the classroom each day that week! Bonus if you offer to do recess duty for them, too!
5. Classroom Wishlist: Take the practical route, and have students bring things they NEED in their classroom. For example, on Monday everyone brings a pack of dry erase markers, on Tuesday they bring boxes of Kleenex, and so on… As we all know, many teachers are buying their supplies with money out of their own pockets, so this could really be an excellent gift!