It’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?