Day after day, year after year, teachers do one of the most important jobs in our society: preparing the next generation for the future. Sadly, this job does not pay very well, but the men and women who do this work don’t necessarily do it for the money. They do it because they love the kids and hope to inspire the young people with whom they work to do great things. Perhaps this year, your child has had a special teacher who has done amazing things, igniting the love of learning in your little one. Maybe for the first time ever, you’ve seen the light of a new passion glowing in the eyes of your teen, and you want to express your thanks to that teacher in a meaningful way. Here are eleven ways to make the eyes of your favorite teacher light up.
1. Write a letter
While tangible things are a nice gesture, the best way to say thank you is to write a heartfelt note expressing how much the teacher’s hard work has meant to you. Don’t settle for email; this is one time a handwritten letter or card is perfect.
2. Home baked treats
If you don’t have much money on hand, most teachers like home baked treats just as well as bakery products.
Many teachers spend their own money on classroom decorations, supplies, supplements, and books. A small monetary gift will help replenish their bank accounts at the end of the year.
4. Gift cards
Gift cards to favorite book stores, coffee shops, or even to a nearby department store are special treats for teachers.
5. Special artwork
If you have a budding artist, mount a piece of his or her artwork for the teacher. Alternately, find a lovely piece that will inspire the teacher every day in the classroom.
Humorous books and posters are always appreciated. Comic books and books like F in Exams: The Very Best Totally Wrong Answers can make your favorite teacher smile after a long day.
7. Gift baskets
If your teacher loves crafts, sewing, gourmet coffees, or chocolates, put together a gift basket containing supplies or treats that he or she would love.
8. Housecleaning service
Most teachers have families and busy schedules. Every teacher would love having a maid come in to clean their home, even if it’s just one time.
Although school’s out at 3:00, many teachers don’t get home till dinner time or later. Treat your teacher to dinner by buying a restaurant gift certificate for a nearby eatery.
10. Movies and music
An iTunes gift card or a favorite movie will bring media to life for your favorite teacher.
Craft a class scrapbook that includes pictures, drawings, and letters from the class to the teacher.
However you decide to say thank you, do make a point of expressing your appreciation to your child’s teacher in some way. Even if you just quietly say thanks on the last day of school, those small gestures help teachers remember why they do what they do every day.