Holiday Gifts for the Teacher

| December 7, 2012 | 23 Comments

ClassroomIt’s that time of year again: You’re making your list and checking it twice, making sure that you have something for everyone. It might be easy to buy for your children, parents, husband and close friends, but it can be difficult to choose something appropriate for someone with whom you have a casual relationship. Whether your child is in preschool, elementary school, dance school or Sunday school, it’s nice to give his teacher a token of your appreciation during the holiday season. Here are some ideas that go beyond the #1 Teacher coffee mugs and keychains:

  • A nice pair of gloves. A pair of Isotoner or even L.L. Bean cashmere gloves will keep your child’s teacher’s hands toasty and warm all winter. If you’re planning on spending $20 or $25 on a gift, this is a thoughtful way to go.
  • A gift certificate for her morning brew. Does the teacher drink coffee or tea? A gift certificate to Dunkin’ Donuts, Starbucks or a local coffee shop might be very much appreciated! Even if she gets an abundance of these, she’ll be able to use them on busy mornings or tired afternoons throughout the year.
  • A group gift. Talk to the moms of your child’s classmates. It’s possible that everyone is stumped for an idea. Collecting $10 or $15 per family can enable you to buy her tickets to the theater or a sporting event, or perhaps a gift certificate to a nice restaurant for a dinner out. You could even spring for a massage, something most teachers probably need!
  • Something handmade. Your child can make something for her teacher, and it will be appreciated regardless of her artistic ability. This could be a self-portrait, a Christmas ornament or a letter. An older child who can knit or crochet could make her a scarf or hat.
  • A donation to charity in the teacher’s name. Find out from your child whether his teacher has a pet cause. You could also strike up a casual conversation to find out whether she donates her time to a specific charity or local organization. If you can’t get any info this way, a gift to an organization serving children in your area is usually a good bet for someone who has dedicated her life to helping kids succeed!

Before you give your child’s teacher a holiday gift, make sure that it’s not against the rules of your child’s school. Some districts discourage or even forbid gift-giving between students and teachers. If this is the case at your school, a letter or card will express your sentiments without putting the teacher in an awkward situation.

What have you given your child’s teachers? If you are a teacher, what are some favorite gifts that you’ve received?

Comments (23)

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  1. Renata Lopes says:

    I loved the teachers always gave some gifts to them.

  2. Crystal W says:

    When my kids were younger and had only one teacher each I would buy a popcorn box and fill it with a movie ticket and fun snacks and popcorn!

  3. Bonnie says:

    Great suggestion. Now I know what to get for my grandaughter’s teacher. Thank you so much

  4. i like the donation in her/his name.

  5. Jenn says:

    I love the gift certificate for coffee idea, however that would never fly in Utah. Jamba Juice would be a big hit though

  6. Diana Heiner says:

    Great Ideas. I’ve been struggling trying to decide what to do for my daughters preschool teacher. Gift certificate for coffee is great!

  7. Liza says:

    I always try to gift teachers with something handmade. For this year, I cross stitched bookmarks for them.

  8. Chrystal D says:

    We did crafty coffee mugs before using thrift store mugs and paints! Then add a box of herbal teas bought from the $ stores ( if they aren’t coffee drinkers! )

  9. Wendy T says:

    I know this may not be popular opinion, but I don’t understand the idea of teacher’s gifts. I get hung up on giving a gift to someone for a job they are hired and paid to do. I don’t give a gift to my doctor, dentist, mail carrier, etc. I think the part about it that bothers me the most is the feeling of obligation. Many give because they feel they ‘should’, not because they necessarily want to. And that’s never the spirit of the season. To that end, I’ve given teacher’s a gift on random days, just to brighten their day. That feels more authentic to me.

  10. Jane Ritz says:

    I, love your article. That’s not why teacher’s are in it. A hug and a Merry Christmas is one of the sweetest things to give. Teachers do like to get Barnes and Noble gift cards-most do what I did-pay it forward, buy a new book for the class.

  11. Rebecca Sinclair says:

    These are great ideas! As a former teacher, I always loved receiving gifts from my kiddos. One of my favorite gifts was a teakettle that matched my Corelware. I have no idea how my student even knew my pattern, but she must have been very observant. It meant a lot to me that she noticed.

  12. Kelvin Justine says:

    Teacher is like the second mother that we have in our second home. So it’s really good to give them this kind of presents and treatments because they also deserve to be awarded for their love and understanding.

  13. Sarah p says:

    My little one isnt quite ready for school just yet, but these are great ideas that i will definitely have to keep in mind when she starts! 🙂 Thanks for sharing

  14. Nina says:

    Great ideas, we are giving handmade gifts mostly

  15. Becky Kuntz says:

    As a parent I liked to have my kids make gifts for their teachers. Make an ornament, or have them bake cookies,then add a mug and hot cocoa mix to the gift. I was a preschool teacher and I got all kinds of gifts. I got mugs, candy, candles, fruitcake and lots of other miscellaneous things…besides it’s the thought that counts!

  16. Chavonne H says:

    This is a great idea to give gifts to teachers to show appreciation for all they do.

  17. charlene k says:

    Thanks for your suggestions for teacher gifting. I am going to read through all of your posts to get more info. I need some suggestions and your site is very helpful. Merry Christmas.

  18. denise smith says:

    thanks every year i am tring to think what to give to the teachers

  19. Ruth chu says:

    My son is in preK and unfortunately we cant afford to buy the kids gifts let alone anyone else. I am happy that you have a non-money option.

  20. Tiffany says:

    I use to do gifts for my daughtets teachers when she was in elementary school.but now that she is older and in middle school we don’t do it anymore to many teachers to keep up with and alot more money and its just not as personal

  21. Karen Glatt says:

    I just got an idea on what my son can give his teacher! I love getting a receiving gloves as a present! I would like to give a pair of gloves! One can not have too many gloves! Plus it is always nice to give a teacher a gift!

  22. Ma. Vanesa Medalla says:

    i love the idea of giving gifts for our teachers because I think of it as a token of appreciation for what they have contribute to our society and for everyone.

  23. Christina Coghill says:

    We’re giving the teacher a 6 pk of kleenex and some hand cleaner…so they don’t have to use the yucky stuff the school supplies…so many germs in the school. Something they don’t have to suppy themselves.

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