Teacher appreciation gifts are generally given to teachers during the grade school years. During this time your child may have a homeroom teacher, a principal, an art teacher, a music teacher and a gym teacher who have helped him out all year. Not to mention the Cub Scout leader and the swim instructor and the baseball coach. It's hard to accommodate all of your child's teachers without feeling cheap and unappreciative, but purchasing all those special teacher gifts can often break the piggy bank.
Controlling Teacher Appreciation Gift Costs
Sometimes you simply have to choose. Choose the teacher you appreciate the most this year. It could be the gym teacher who piqued your child's interest in sports, or a particular lunch lady who was kind to your child when she was having a really bad day. If your child has a special fondness for one or two particular teachers, purchase a gift for only those teachers.
Inexpensive Gifts that will be Remembered
Since every teacher usually has at least a half hour of planning time during her day, you might want to gift your special teacher with something to snack on during planning time. Microwave popcorn is a good place to start. Even if it's only one bag of popcorn and a can of soda, the teacher will love it. If soda is not your teacher's favorite, a container of flavored tea or coffee may hit the spot. A small box or basket of store-bought chocolates, energy bars, hard candies and gum is always a welcome treat. If all else fails, give gift certificates to the movie theater, Starbucks, the café down the street or the local fast food restaurant.
Homemade baked goods are not always a good idea, because the teacher may feel obligated to share. If your teacher appreciation gift is truly intended for the teacher, don't give her something that she should share with other teachers or with her students.
Unless you know the teacher well and he also knows your family well, don't invite him to your home for dinner. Inviting the teacher out to dinner with your family can be awkward for the teacher, especially if there has been any type of altercation between you. Instead, give him a gift certificate to a nice restaurant and let him meet up with her own friends and family.
If you're looking for something that a teacher can use in the classroom as a teacher appreciation gift, think about hand lotion, soft soap containers or even a small plant to brighten the room. The gifts are intended only for the teacher, but they are things she can definitely use in the classroom.
Items with an apple theme should be avoided. Over the course of a few years, teachers end up with plenty of apple-themed items and few places left to display or store them. The same is true of Christmas ornaments. Chances are he's got plenty of special ornaments already. Instead, donate a book to the school library in his name.
Homemade teacher gifts are an inexpensive yet personal way to remember a favorite teacher. Find suggestions for giving homemade gift cards, scrapbooking supplies and food.
To come up with ideas for unique teacher gifts, all you need to do is think about the teacher's life outside the classroom.