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June 2, 2012

Five Great Gifts for Teachers (and #1 is FREE!)

     If you're looking to get your child's teacher a gift, you may not know where to start.  Whether it's for the holidays, teacher appreciation week, or as an end-of-the-year "thank you", here are some great gift ideas for you to consider- and the first one won't cost you a cent!

#1: A Heart-Felt "Thank You" Note.
    Teachers can often feel under-appreciated for all the hard work they put in on a daily basis. Being a teacher is not easy, and being a great teacher is even harder. So let your child's teacher know how much you appreciate his or her investment in your child's future by writing a sincere letter of gratitude.  If you need help getting started, try finishing these sentences:
  • Before [insert child's name] started in your class (s)he __________, but now (s)he __________.
  • My child loves how you __________.
  • I appreciate how you __________.
  • You are a great role model because __________. 
#2: A Gift Card
     There is a good chance that your child's teacher is not a millionaire. Even if it feels like you're paying millions of dollars in tuition, they're probably not making much.  Easing money woes is a great gift idea for almost anyone and who doesn't love a little money off the tab at their favorite restaurant?  You don't need to get them a $50 gift card to the nicest restaurant in town.  Five dollars to McDonald's will buy a lunch and five dollars to Starbucks can buy some much-needed coffee.

#3:  A Spa Certificate
    Teachers are often under a lot of stress.  You know how wonderful -and -how terrible your child can be at times.  Now multiply that by the number of kids in the class and you have what teachers work with on a daily basis.  That's not even including all the paperwork, staff meetings, grading, parent-teacher conferences, and keeping up with required continuing education.  Teachers could definitely use some time to relax at a spa.  While a free massage would be wonderful, a nice pedicure can be just as relaxing.

#4:  Something For The Classroom (Ask first!)
    New stuff is always great, and new stuff for the classroom can be just as wonderful as a new stuff for ourselves.  You may want to ask the principal or management staff first before you buy anything.  Some schools have strict policies on what goes into a classroom and where it comes from, but usually a donation of a children's book or a set of pencils will be warmly welcomed.

#5:  Know Your Teacher/Be Creative
    If you know your child's teacher well enough, you can get something that specifically fits that teacher.  For instance, if you happen to know that the teacher is gluten-intolerant, you can give him or her a great tasting gluten-free cookie recipe.  Another great give idea comes from you.  Don't be afraid to get creative.  One amazing gift I got from a mom was a poem using the letters of my name for adjectives that describe me.  Another wonderfully unique gift I got from a parent was a donation made in my name to provide desks for a school in rural China.  So don't be afraid to think outside the box and try getting to know your child's teacher.  You'll get a plethora of great gift ideas!  

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