As a teacher, I never expect my students to give me Christmas gifts. However, it does warm my heart when my student’s parents send a special treat and recognize that I have been working hard for their child.
With more and more teachers funding their own classroom, one of the most appreciated gifts are the ones that they can use with their students. This Christmas, skip the lotions and candles and think about what a teacher could use on a day to day basis. If you are still stuck, let me give you a few suggestions.
1. Add to their classroom library. Do your homework to find books that are on the grade level reading list or copies of books in the curriculum. Look for award winning books or books with an inspirational message.
2. Honor world-class teachers with a globe or classroom map. You may think that these items would come standard with a classroom, but that is not the case. Include a message about how they “mean the world to you,” or you think they are the world’s best teacher.
3. Stocking full of school supplies. Ease the financial burden of supplying a classroom. Fill a stocking with fun pencils, pens, sticky notes, or highlighters. You may also choose a nice planner for the upcoming year.
4. Great Chair. Lend your teacher some support, particularly in their lumbar region. Anyone who sits at a desk for part of their day knows the importance of a comfortable chair. One time, the entire class chipped in to buy my friend, an elementary school teacher, a rocking chair to sit in during circle time. To add to how special of a gift it was, every child in the class signed it.
5. If you are classroom mom, consider organizing a cash or gift card wreath. Contact all of the students’ parents and have them chip in. Arrange the cash or gift cards in a wreath and present it to the teacher. Find gift cards to local restaurants, teacher-supply stores and nail salons so that she can treat herself.
6. Sponsor a speaker or classroom project. Many teachers would love to bring in a neat guest speaker or have a classroom project. Peruse teacher supply websites and catalogs for ideas. Check out the price on a kit to hatch butterflies, a greenhouse, or an aquarium. Would a local scientist come to the classroom and do some experiments? Would the zoo bring by animals? Some of these places would do so for a donation to their organization.