With the busy holiday season upon us, finding easy teacher gift ideas for our children to give is high on my list of time saving tips. While not everyone may choose to gift at the holidays, we do and we thank every educator that our children come in contact with. That means homeroom, switch teachers, specials teachers, the carpool supervisor ~ you name them, my kids are thanking them. And that means not only is that a lot of gifts to prepare but its also a lot of gifts to afford. That’s why I’m such a huge fan of signature gifts ~ giving one gift to the same group of people. That way you know exactly what you are in for.
While I love handmade gifts, I know that truth be told, not all teachers might agree and that can be especially true in the upper grades ~ middle and high school ~ or for seasoned teachers whose classrooms are full of years of treasures. Not to mention budget cuts that make practical gifts like classroom supplies as priceless as can be.
So if like me you will spend this weekend looking for easy teacher gift ideas, here are a few tips to keep in mind as you go!
Follow the Rules
Many schools have clear guidelines about teacher gifting. Look for gift card amount or cash value limits ($25 is not uncommon) as well as stipulations that may prevent you from taking a class collection. Often holiday gifts are left to individual decisions as well as schools clearly outlining that cash donations cannot be requested.
Do Your Research
PTAs will often have a Room Mom Committee Chair. If so, there’s a great chance she has gathered teacher information sheets that will guide you to make choices that your teacher will totally love. You’ll find all kinds of great information like favorite candy, favorite stores, even information about their alma-mater and birthday. The best part? That list is the perfect idea starter for making a personalized gift basket. Not a group gift? No worries! Check out this adorable gift basket by Kayla Aimee in her post, Cute and Creative Holiday Gift Baskets for Teachers Under $10 ~ its perfect!
The average teacher spends upwards of $1,000 annually of their own resources towards their classroom. I’ve yet to meet a teacher who doesn’t welcome classroom supplies and other items they surely need replenished by mid-year. While there’s no question a gift card to an office supply or local big box store can go a long way for typical wish list items, its the local educational supply store that may have the items your teacher is truly hoping to add to his or her classroom. Thankfully, we have Stone’s Education and Toys which really offers it all.
When you have a teacher who brings on the clever, don’t hesitate to break out your inner Martha Stewart. But the secret here is you don’t have to be the one to actually make the clever gift if you don’t want to. Think anything personalized, handmade, or homemade and you are sure to hit a home run. This year its all about the monogram and a beautiful pashmina scarf with your teacher’s monogram would be about as awesome as can be. I love this brown on carmel look from MarleyLilly.com. Well okay I love EVERYTHING on MarleyLilly.com =)
School Spirit for the Holidays
When my sons got older it became even more challenging to come up with high school teacher gift ideas that I thought would be a good fit. Why? Because you really don’t get to know them very well to know anything they might like beyond their world at school. High school isn’t about being on campus every week volunteering in the class. Parents help from a distance and of course while that’s as often as you can its not nearly as often as it once was. The other challenge is we have block scheduling, so first semester teachers aren’t the same as 2nd semester teachers therefore they never have teacher appreciation day or an end of the year thank you. So we began the tradition of giving the high school teachers holiday treats ~ I love to bake so this one is a no brainer ~ with hand written thank you note from our sons and a school spirit ornament like those pictured below. Beyond easy to do, all you need is an ornament that is already covered in glitter, a glitter glue pen and fabulous ribbon in the opposite color. Add the school initials and just like that you’ve got a school spirit ornament! We mix up the design and materials each year and teachers, coaches, and administrators love their growing collections.
I hope these ideas encourage you to get your holiday craft on as you choose your favorite teacher gift ideas for Christmas this weekend. Tell me…
What are you planning to give your child’s teacher this year?
If getting organized for the holidays is on your to-do list, check out our GO MOM!® Holiday Bundle to point you in the right direction. You can also join our Get Organized for the Holidays Facebook Group for daily organizing prompts throughout the holiday season. For more holiday specific gift ideas check out our Holiday Gifts Pinterest Board where you’ll find a collection of holiday gift guides that are sure to have some new ideas you’ve not thought of before. You may also find our Organized Teacher Finds Pinterest Board a great resource not only now but all year long
I found some clever ideas on Amazon that would be a great fit for teachers at any stage in their career. Check them out via the affiliate links below.
Remember your children spend more time awake at school with their teachers, coaches, and other activity leaders than they do with you. Take time to thank them for all they do ~ it truly is a gift beyond all measure. Thanks so much for stopping by ~ we’ll see you next time!