Tuesday, June 02, 2009

Teacher Gifts

It is that time...the end of the school year. For teachers it means conferences, portfolios, music CDs, photo DVDs, cleaning the room, and end of the year gifts. Lotion, candles and apple gifts are always nice and appreciated, but it is those gifts that have special meaning and thought that really stick out in a teachers mind. A few years ago I received a large pot full of annuals the mom planted for me. I enjoyed it all summer! A mom this year sent in a couple reams of paper at the end of the year because she knows how much paper we go through with newsletters, notes, home and family projects. I had some very generous families this year and I am very thankful for the nice gifts.

One family bought me 100 CDs and 100 Jewel Cases! What a great idea! The mom knows that I make end of the year CDs for all of the kids and wanted to help me out with that project as my end of the year gift. Thoughtful and useful!

Another family gave me a very special engraved clock from Things Remembered. It says, "Thank you for being the best teacher!" with his name on the bottom. They also gave me a little ceramic square that says, "Nurture little people, grow big dreams". They obviously put a lot of thought and planning into the gift and I am very touched by the inscription on the clock.

I also did receive some gift cards from families. A mom in each of my afternoon classes sent notes to the families to contribute to a group gift card for Target. They sneakily put notes in backpacks when they were in volunteering in the room and I think it is funny they both separately thought of Target (I LOVE Super Target. You can shop for anything there...groceries, clothes, office supplies, cosmetics, etc!)! I also received a Panera gift card....Mediterranean Veggie sandwich...here I come! Gift cards are always a GREAT teacher gift!
The most meaningful thing to teachers at the end of the year is having a nice note. More than any gift card or apple sign or expensive gift, teachers love a nice note. I did get several of those this year as well and I feel very lucky to have such wonderful families this year.
Some of the notes I received:
From the Thankful Families of....
Thank you for everything you've done for ------. We definitely see him coming out of his shell and communicating with everyone much more.
Thank you for the care you have given ------. The patience you have shown towards helping him grow is something I'll never forget. Thank you and we will miss you.
So....if you have kids, know that the teachers appreciate EVERY gift we receive. We may giggle at lunch about apple gifts or what you can really buy with a $5 gift card to Target....but we do appreciate the thought with it all, especially if it comes with a "Thank you for everything"!
Also, a plug for the other support staff at school....
The speech teachers, nurses, secretaries, PE teachers, principal and other support staff often get left out at the end of the year. We would not be able to do it without them and they are an integral part of making each child's year successful! They also appreciate a "Thanks for everything you do" note at the end of the year.
If you have kids:
What types of gifts have you given to your child's teachers?
If you are a teacher:
What are you favorite gifts you have received from students?


Amy said...

My mom used give my teachers homemade cookies. Or around the holidays, she made them a holiday CD. For our female teachers, she once gave them a cute sewing kit that had a witty saying that linked sewing and teaching. :) Most of the times, Doug and I wrote in a card for them, too!

The gifts you got are so adorable, and you definitely deserve every one of them, you're a great teacher. :)

Jen Vincent said...

As soon as I read this I had to go post my own teacher gifts post. You have to go read it and look at my picture!!!! Thanks for posting this...it gave me a chance to remember my student and to feel loved a again!


Kristin said...

The best gifts?? Potted plants and signed Christmas ornaments.
The oddest? A Victoria's Secret gift card...yikes!


Erin said...

I always love handmade Christmas ornaments, or any kind of photo of the kids.

I did actually get a really cute teacher necklace this year. I also got a dozen roses, box of chocolates, and a Tiffany & Co. keychain one Valentine's Day. That blew me away.

My favorite things are the notes though. I have a box full of them. They really help me out when I'm dealing with parents who don't appreciate me.