Monday, March 22, 2010

Top Ten Tuesday - Teacher Gifts


I'm in my 8th year of teaching middle school. That's 8 rounds of Christmas & End of the Year gifts. Throughout that time, I've gotten gifts!

Let me preface this post by saying that I'm not writing this as a wish-list of gimmie, gimmie, gimmie but it is merely some suggestions. Middle school presents a whole new set of circumstances. In elementary school kids have 1 or 2 teachers all day, but when they get to middle school they can have up to 8 different teachers! I know it's overwhelming and can really add up...but it doesn't have to!

Teacher Appreciation Week is a little over a month away, so here's a few tips to help you out:
  • DON'T feel like you have to buy for every teacher. One option is to spend a little more money on those teachers you feel put a little extra effort into your child and something smaller for the rest of them.
  • DON'T, for the love, give us a-noth-er mug!!
  • Oh, and filling it up with candy doesn't make it any better!
So here's some ideas:

Honestly, you just can't wrong with these. Ice cream card, gas card, grocery card, office supply card, iTunes, Target or Wal-Mart card. Honestly, any gift card you give will probably be spent on classroom anyways, so it's an investment. My all time favorite gifts are Starbucks gift cards. Don't feel bad for getting your teacher a $5 gift card. They add up!

2. Crayon Initial Plaque
It just doesn't get any cuter than this!

3. Magnetic Bookmark
Don't negate practicality. I got one of these one year and use it to keep my place in my teacher's edition book.

4. Paper ream
All teachers need paper. Why not spice it up and let your child pick out their favorite color.

5. Pencil Vase
I got one of these my first year teaching and still put it on my desk every year. This link is for a tutorial that uses colored pencils instead of regular pencils, which I think is a cute version.

6. Personalized stationary
I didn't realize how much I actually liked this until I got it. Then I realized how much I actually used it.

7. Pleated Poppy
I just met her at the blogging conference I went to last month. She was handing out these homemade pins that she made. I would LOVE to get one of these!

8. Homemade goodies on a cute plate
You can get some really cute, cheap plates at Crate & Barrell or even Target.

9. Kitchen gadgets
Who doesn't love kitchen gadgets? Why not put a bow on a nice grater with a note: Thanks for being a "grate" teacher.
10. Earrings
This one walks a fine line. If your child's teacher is young and dresses fashionable, then a pair of earrings from Forever 21, Charlotte Ruse, or Charming Charlie would be a hit.

So there you have it. In my humble opinion. I hope I've given you some good ideas. Go check out some more Top Ten at OhAmanda.


Mandi @ It'scome2this said...

Those are good ideas - and a mix too so everyone can find something that would work. For the first week of school, I've always bought Evan's teachers a gourmet candy/decorated apple - I think it's the modern day version of taking the teacher an apple - good idea???

Staci said...

Yes, LOVE the gourmet apple. Very creative!

Cheryl said...

GREAT IDEAS!!!!!!!!!!

Amy Bennett said...

I am SO horrible at this! This happens to be teacher appreciation week at my daughter's school and Thursday is bring something sweet...I'm totally going to find a cute plate to put them and send in. THANKS!

oh amanda said...

AWESOME ideas, Stace. Really! I wish I knew a teacher I could send one a really good teacher. Maybe one that won the Teacher of the Year? Hmm....

Kathy@houseofhills said...

One year a mom brought me a warm homemade meal complete with an adult beverage bottle that I had to go to her car to retrieve. It was perfect for us newlyweds enduring the crazy end of the year.

I gave my daughters K teacher three frozen meals for Christmas. She LOVED them!! So if you cook a lot that's a good one too!!

Ashley said...

#1 - Definitely a "can't go wrong" choice!
#2 - Super cute!
#4 - Clever idea - I would have NEVER thought of that, but totally practical!
#8 - Yum! and who doesn't love fun plates?!

lifewithcourt said...

From an ex-teacher... these are right on! Anything consumable is always good, but I agree that gift cards are the best!

Christine Satterfield said...

These are fantastic ideas!!! Some could be used for the magnetic bookmark. I'm going to keep this in my "file" for later :-)

Beth McC. said...

I jsut took notes from this post!! GOOD IDEAS, thanks!!

Happy Friday!

Holly said...

Wow, I love the crayon plaque! That's super cool!

mer@lifeat7000feet said...

Thanks for this post! I have two middle schoolers and between them they have 15 teachers this term! Even $5 gift cards add up, but you've given me some good ideas AND I feel a little more freedom to only gift the ones they truly love!

Kracked Kat said...

The link for the pencil vase tutorial didn't work for me so I did my own tutorial. You can check it out at I even gave Simply Staci a little shout out. I hope that is okay. I am new to blogging so any creative criticism you offer will be welcome!!!


Suzanne said...

As a kindergarten teacher, I totally agree!! Especially the baked goods on a cute plate-- love that idea! and the "grate" teacher- ha! too cute!

Other ideas that I've loved through the years:

1. Movie passes for me and my husband with a little note that said "date night is on us!"

2. Have your child create a bookmark (stickers, markers, glitter, ribbon, etc.) and give them a Barnes & Noble gift card. The bookmark makes the gift card more personal and it's a fun keepsake that involves the child.

3. This is totally random, but one of the moms gave me a cute polka dot umbrella this year with an S for my first name. I would have never thought of that, but it's been great to look stylish during the rainy fall days.

4. Cute notepads are always welcome because they're useful!

Aiming4Simple said...

What a great list! We did candles last year, cookies this year. I'll refer back to this list for sure.

Thanks for your visit too!

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