Teacher Gift SOS

It’s that time of year again–where I start to stress about the perfect gift for O’s teachers. I want to show them appreciation and thank them for all of their hard work, but I don’t have lots of money to spend. (It’s also true that I’m a procrastinator, but I’m also waiting for checks to clear! And more checks to come in.)

So there beginth the brain spinning: Do they want child-created artwork? (Don’t they see enough of that?) Baked goods? (What if they hate chocolate?) Ornaments with a picture of O? (Too presumptuous?)

I’ve searched online, but some of the gift suggestions are just plain weird. I loved the necklace that Sue posted in a Friday Finds earlier this month, but it’s just not really O’s teacher’s style…

What is a WMAG to do?

I do not know! So help me, WMAGs–what do you get your children’s teachers? And if there are any teachers out there who would like to weigh in on what they like to receive, that would be great, too!

Love ya–mean it! πŸ˜‰ (not MEANT, like I wrote earlier… Sigh.)

19 thoughts on “Teacher Gift SOS

  1. I hear you! This year I am doing $10 DD gift cards in a mug with some homemade biscotti. If they don't like my baked goods at least they can get some donuts…

    In previous years I have gotten them lunch bags from Lands End with their names embroidered on.

    Good luck!

  2. I'm getting $20 starbucks giftcards (as theres a starbucks across a parking lot from the daycare). I talked to my mom – a former elementary school teacher – and she thought that was a good idea. I remember she'd get tons of baked goods and also random apple xmas ornements that she was never really a fan of.

    the hard part was figuring out exactly which teachers to get gifts for – since my daughter is only 21 months and in daycare and the teacher schedule varies (plus there are the occasional subs)

  3. My mother-in-law has been a teacher for 30 years and said the best gifts were gift cards and a "thank you" note from the parents. I made some Christmas cookies last weekend and attached at $20 gift card to WalMart for each of my daughter's daycare teachers. They really appreciated it!

  4. My mom teaches and she loves gift cards more than anything. Target, Starbucks, Office Max (or Depot) or even a local teacher store is also helpful. I used to work at a local teacher store in college and people seemed to love gift certificates there–plus you'd be able to support a local business if that's important to you.

  5. I always drive myself crazy over-thinking the perfect gift for the teachers too (well everyone really). I was better this year at deciding without looking back. This year I bought Border gift cards when they were buy $25 get $10 free. I will give me each $10.

    Saw this today, http://bit.ly/6vmbOi, is you have time for DIY gifts. I especially love the Curried Lentil Soup.

    The teachers will appreciate whatever you can give them, especially when accompanied by a thoughtful note.

  6. Hmm… it sounds like gift cards are definitely a front runner. Thing is, these teachers aren't so much Starbucks teachers. Maybe Target teachers… πŸ™‚

    Jacky–I do the SAME thing. I drive myself crazy trying to pick the perfect gift AND at the best price. I work hard for my money… I want to make sure it's well spent, but I'm going to give myself migraines trying to figure it all out…

  7. As a teacher, I like to get anything homemade. I already have so many nice things and so many of my families could better spend their money elsewhere. If a family does want to get something, I suggest they buy something for our class (a book or a game or a fun CD). Personally, my own kids are making cinnamon/applesauce ornaments for my children's teachers this year.

  8. I made a coffee cozy for Henry's teacher (the kind you use instead of the cardboard ring) and I am pairing it with a gift card to our local coffee shop and some beans in case she wants to brew her own. I made a tea wallet for his tea loving TA and will pair it with some nice organic green tea and a gift card as well.

  9. I'm a fan of regifting gift cards you didn't really want and have been sitting in your wallet for a while. Is that tacky? I guess it's better to give them a gift card they'd actually like. But you never know … (says the world-famous Scrooge McSue).

  10. last year i lucked out at Origins: the salesperson had a whole section devoted to "teacher gifts." we got one set of relaxation gumballs (sounds strange – but they're so cute!), another one we got stress-relief spray and i can't remember the third (mommy brain). anyway, they were each about $10! the store even gift-wrapped for us. oh i remember – i think the third gift was relaxation tea?

    good luck!

  11. My boyfriend is a teacher and he says this:

    "All of those sweatshirts, mugs, magnets, and christmas ornaments with sentiments like "I <3 Teaching" or "A+ Teacher" will eventually get pitched (and honestly, sometimes "eventually" is "right after Christmas". It's not ingratitude, it's the fact that teachers usually have between 15-150 students a year! That's a lot of apple ornaments over the years. Gift cards, personal notes, or homemade stuff (like cookies and such) are very much appreciated."

    Susan: Regifting gift cards seems fine; nice thing is they can always regift it too. πŸ˜‰

  12. My friend the kindergarten teacher agrees with Julie's boyfriend. She always appreciates any kind of gift card over anything with apple, teacher, or anything else tangible.

    My older son is in 1st grade and I'm organizing a class gift to a local spa. So far we're up to $70 I think, which is awesome. I asked for $5 per kid and some have offered more. Last year I gave a gift cert to the local educational store.

    For my 3 year old's daycare, we're doing Starbucks gift cards.

  13. In the past, I've done a couple handmade gifts for teachers that I posted about before… waterpainted notecards, the initial tote bag and homemade bath salts. All inexpensive. This year however,both my kids' classroom moms took up a collection to buy one big gift card. So I had it pretty easy, since I just chipped in for that. But I went ahead and bought a little something too… Christmas socks. Who doesn't love Christmas socks? πŸ™‚

  14. I love gift cards for teachers but this year we are crocheting a scarf as this is something my daughter & I do together and it is something that can get used and knowing this teacher, it will be appreciated. So handmade it is. However, I only have 1 teacher to gift so it's easier. But being a former teacher and a professional organizer – no STUFF. Seriously, in today's day and age – we don't need any more knick-knacks, tchotchkes, whatever to store or display. And if you have a teacher who has been doing this a while – these things can pile up – and do NOT get used.

  15. Every year my boys pick a craft from Oriental trading to make for the grannies, aunt's, etc. I buy enough to include the teachers and anyone else my kids would want to gift something to (bus drivers, etc.) This year they chose a snowman bracelet. The kits came in, we made them all up in one afternoon and both teachers will be getting a very cute bracelet this week. Total cost was about 1.10 apiece.

  16. labels from Mabels labels. I got the teacher set. not sure if she will use it. from the messages, I can see how a gift of more stuff could be burdensome.

  17. Thanks so much for this post! I have also been fretting about what to do for Alyssa's teachers. This gave me some great ideas. And I am officially hooked on that Oriental Trading website – adorable craft ideas. Now if only I could find time for crafting…

  18. I'm a teacher, and I agree with Megan–you get some gifts that are so sweet, but then you feel badly that they spent their hard earned money on it. Let's face it–I don't think anyone needs more 'stuff.' Receiving a nice, heartfelt note (I've even put some I've received in my personnel file). I like the idea of buying something for the class, like a book. I have to admit, I love receiving gift cards, and that's what I gave my own children's teachers this year (from Borders). Happy Holidays!

  19. As a teacher, I LOVE gift cards from Dunkin Donuts, Starbucks, local restaurants, and B&N. I got way too many bags of candy, ornaments (as if my 4 & 7 year olds don't make enough at school! ), candles, and lotions/bath gels. BUT the BEST gift of all, was a beautiful thank you card from the parents of a "difficult" child thanking me for all my hard work and patience.

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