Polk Moms

Connecting moms in Polk County, Fla.

Since we have some moms with a few years of kids in elementary schools under their belts, and some teachers - please weigh in with your thoughts on Christmas gifts for teachers.

I'm guessing most teachers who've been at the job a while already have every possible mug or apple themed knick-knack ever made lol - so looking for tips on creative gifts that teachers need or can use?

I've heard some teachers are wary of homemade goods (like baked items) and I can understand this.

I suppose that leaves gift cards - is that the best way to go?


Tags: Christmas, gifts, teachers

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The best Christmas gifts I have ever received as a teacher have been thank you letters or notes from students. I have kept all of them and have often re-read them on days when I am ready to quit from frustration. That is a very inexpensive, but heartfelt, gift.

As for gift cards, I would suggest keeping them at very small denominations. I myself am uncomfortable accepting anything of great value and it does raise ethical issues. If you go with gift cards, maybe a 5 dollar (or less) blockbuster card with some popcorn/candy (like a movie-themed gift).
I always did baked goodies and had no problems. Since this year they are changing teachers and have about 4-5 different ones, I'm stumped. I know the head volunteer does a end of the months gathering in the media center for teachers and staff. They do goodies, coffee and juice. Thinking of making a platter to give so everyone can enjoy it. I do the same thing for his therapists. He gets several and it's easier just to bake one huge platter for all to enjoy. Everyone raves about the goodies. My platters usually end up being 10 pounds or more. Can't wait to start baking!!!
As a para in an elementary school and the mom of an elementary student, the best gift I can suggest is school supplies(pencils , notebook paper, colored pencils etc.) This time of the year, we are approaching the half way mark and many of the "first day of school supplies" have been used up, leaving the teachers to go out and pay for these items out of their own pocket. To personalize it, add an inexpensive ornament for the teacher to decorate the classroom tree. It will help out the classroom and be something the teacher can really use and will greatly appreciate. And if you go to $ tree...less than 5 bucks including the gift bag!!

Sharon McGuire
Thank you for these ideas. I always wanted to get school supplies or a gift certificate for Teacher's Exchange but I wasn't sure it was appropriate. In a way, I feel that the teacher deserves something for him or herself, outside of "work". But I didn't know that they often have to pay for supplies themselves, so now it makes a bit more sense.

In the past (when the economy was better) my husband encouraged me to be very generous for my son's teachers. I have done $25 to $50 gift cards to restaurants. Last year I did a gift certificate to Daydreams Spa....it was a big hit, but some of the other moms joked around about my son being the "teacher's pet" after that.

I like the gift card idea because we frequent a certain restaurant that gives a free $20 gift card for every $100 in gift cards you buy...so I can get 4 $25 gift cards for teachers, etc. and I am only spending $20 for each of them in reality.

I'm bringing this topic back. 

I did pick up this MINIMERGENCY KIT FOR TEACHERS.  Seriously, it is adorable, and the clever ideas that's included obviously had a lot of thought: spare earring backs, caffeine gum, deodorant, and band-aids to name a few, in a tiny little case.  I'm impressed.  I hope our receiving teacher will be, too. 

I also bought a case of these chocolate covered pecans, well, because they are the best!  and we have multiple teachers this year, Ryan, now that he's in 5th grade, changes classes.   So each teacher will receive a bag. 

...oh, I forgot to add another link with ideas that gives the suggestion of putting together your own teacher kit. 

dos & don'ts of teacher gifts every parent should know

Since my son entered kindergarten I have always given his teacher a gift that I crocheted. Most of them are the cute ruffled scarfs you can see here. (http://www.redheart.com/free-patterns/frilly-knit-scarf) One year I did do a afghan but, I had more time on my hands that year. They all seem to enjoy them.

Over-wrked Momma, I miss you!  I haven't seen you on the boards lately.  I hope all is going great your way.   Thanks for replying to our topic. 

I do love your idea and so many scarfs that I have complimented on to others they reply back that they were made by a friend or loved one, so I do think making scarfs and getting them as gifts is on trend and amazing, too.  Good for you to be so talented! 

Over-wrked Momma said:

Since my son entered kindergarten I have always given his teacher a gift that I crocheted. Most of them are the cute ruffled scarfs you can see here. (http://www.redheart.com/free-patterns/frilly-knit-scarf) One year I did do a afghan but, I had more time on my hands that year. They all seem to enjoy them.

I mixed it up a bit this year. Assistant teachers, tutor and Girl Scout leader got 3 wick candles from Bath and Body Works with winter/holiday themed scents. Between the sales and the coupons, I was able to get them for about $10 each. I also got some Starbucks gift cards for guitar teacher, other scout leaders, etc. For the front office staff, principal, etc. at my kids' school I got an Edible Arrangements box of chocolate covered fruit. The babysitter we have been using a lot recently will get some Bath and Body stuff, and so will the gymnastics teacher. The main school teachers got restaurant gift cards. I wanted to do some homemade gifts this year but ran out of time...as usual!

Jmarr, it sounds like you really covered your bases!   Great job and good ideas, too.   

Speaking of Bath and Body Works, I talked with my former step-son's girlfriend (she's 19) yesterday and she smelled divine!  She said it was body splash called Paris from BandBW.   

Jmarr said:

I mixed it up a bit this year. Assistant teachers, tutor and Girl Scout leader got 3 wick candles from Bath and Body Works with winter/holiday themed scents. Between the sales and the coupons, I was able to get them for about $10 each. I also got some Starbucks gift cards for guitar teacher, other scout leaders, etc. For the front office staff, principal, etc. at my kids' school I got an Edible Arrangements box of chocolate covered fruit. The babysitter we have been using a lot recently will get some Bath and Body stuff, and so will the gymnastics teacher. The main school teachers got restaurant gift cards. I wanted to do some homemade gifts this year but ran out of time...as usual!

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