Around this time every year, I see posts on social media and get messages from friends about teacher holiday gifts. Any gift that you give your child's teachers or your colleagues is always appreciated, but here are a few ideas, in no particular order, for gift giving to the teacher in your life.
Please note: these ideas are my own personal feelings and opinions.
1. Gift Cards
I'm going to let you in on a little secret…teachers LOVE gift cards! We really do! Teachers spend a lot of their own money throughout the year on their classrooms and a gift card around the holidays is very appreciated and always put to good use!
Teachers love Teachers Pay Teachers and a small gift card can go a long way on Teachers Pay Teachers with resources for the classroom!
Gift cards to Starbucks or a local coffee shop are always appreciated as well. Teachers love coffee…but if they're like me and don't drink coffee, there's always something delicious to grab besides coffee too!
A gift card to the movies is also a wonderful gift for a teacher. We may not make it to the end of a movie during the school year without falling asleep, but we love to go to the movies during break!
And if you're really aiming for Teacher's Pet, you cannot go wrong with a local spa gift card. Local restaurants are always a favorite too.
And remember, you're giving your gift right before a break when your teacher will have time to enjoy dinner, movie, shopping, or a spa day! So while a gift card may seem impersonal, it is practical and a great way to show your appreciation.
2. Personal Laminator
There is nothing quite like freshly laminated papers. Something about fresh lamination brings a smile to any teacher's face…and you can be the one to bring the joy of a personal laminator to the teacher in your life! And don't you worry, if he/she already has one! There is no such thing as too many laminators…I have been known to run two at a time…and also to keep one at home and one at school. Or, if you know your teacher has a laminator already, you can always purchase laminating sheets. They are used quite often in the classroom, so will be greatly appreciated.
3. Mini Crock Pot
A mini crock pot is a great gift for the classroom because, as you may know, teachers do not have a lot of time for lunch. A mini crock pot can warm up food and save some time, which is precious, during lunch time. I know what you're thinking…what about a microwave? Well, for teachers that eat lunch in the classroom, this is a big time saver because it is one less stop to make to heat up food!
4. Coffee Maker
Teachers love coffee and a great gift for a teacher would be a small coffee maker for the classroom. A small, one cup machine would be a coffee lover's dream! You can add in some different K-cups to keep it stocked too! (Make sure to check if your teacher is a non-coffee drinker! We are rare, but do exist!)
5. Teacher Supplies
I know it seems silly to buy a teacher classroom supplies…but teachers love classroom supplies! We really do! There is something about a new pack of pens that just makes a teacher happy. Some favorite teacher supplies are: flair pens, gel pens, sticky notes, Mr. Sketch markers, a fun supply caddy, or Ticonderoga pencils. Put these supplies in the fun caddy, write a cute tag, and you've got the perfect teacher gift!
6. Classroom Books
Building a classroom library takes time and even if you've been teaching for a while, it's always growing! Help your child's teacher out by contributing a few favorite titles to the library. Here are a few titles that would be a welcome addition to any classroom:
7. Silhouette or Cricuit Machine
This is a costly gift but could definitely be something that you could join forces with other families in the classroom. Silhouette & Cricuit machines are cutting machines that can cut paper, vinyl, and more. It's a teacher's dream come true, but is not always something that is in a school or teacher's budget. Teachers can create custom bulletin boards, labels, dry erase spots, and more. It would be an amazing gift to receive!
8. Wrapping Paper Gift Basket
If your teacher is anything like me, he/she probably has not begun wrapping presents yet. There is usually so much going on at school as break approaches, all the wrapping at home gets pushed to the side. Put together a basket with some wrapping paper, tags, tape, and scissors so that your teacher is all set to tackle holiday wrapping when break begins.
9. Echo Dot-Alexa
The Echo Dot is a great tool to have in the classroom! Not only can you create playlists to listen to in the classroom but students can use Alexa to ask for help with research, spelling, weather, and more! What a fun gift to give!
10. Handwritten Note
While all the gifts listed are greatly appreciated, a handwritten note of thanks can be one of the most thoughtful gifts you can give to your child's teacher. These are truly the gifts that I keep and cherish when I look back at them. Reading kind words from parents or from students is priceless and never goes out of style!
11. Travel Mug
And if you must, I mean must, give a mug; make it a Yeti. A Yeti travel mug will keep coffee hot all day when it's left sitting for a long time and keep cold drinks cold too. (And this is also my subtle hint to stay away from giving a mug. We have lots and lots of mugs already. We love them all…we just don't need any more.)
A few tips to consider when choosing a gift for your teacher:
- Stay away from holiday decor or ornaments. It becomes overwhelming when students give holiday decor and it might not always fit in to the decorating colors or themes in a teacher's own home.
- Body lotions or perfumes are not ideal gifts because they are more of a personal choice and can be hard to judge what scents a teacher will like. Students are many times sensitive to scents too, so the gift may not be able to be used in the classroom.
- There are two types of teachers in this world….those that will eat the homemade treats and those that will not. You can never be sure, so if you are giving baked goods, it is best to do so from a bakery.
- Handmade crafts are cute and thoughtful but also can become overwhelming when students give as gifts each year.
- A group gift from the entire class can make a small contribution go a long way. Collecting a small amount from each family can turn your $5 contribution into a $100 gift. If you have a room parent or someone that is willing to coordinate, that takes the burden of shopping off of you too!
Grab this free “Teachers favorite things” page to get a better idea of what the teacher in your life may like for gifts throughout the year. You can send this in for the teacher to fill out and use it for special occasions throughout the year.
No matter what gift you give this season, the teacher in your life is sure to appreciate the thoughtfulness and kindness you put into it.
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You can check out all of these gifts in my Amazon Influencer shop.