Teacher gifts: what they want and don’t want

teacher appleI have endless respect for those who dedicate their lives to the development of our children. Not a job for the faint of heart (nor for those short on patience- an automatic out for me), teachers play an integral role in the intellectual and emotional development of your child.

That said, as the school year winds down, it is time to celebrate your teacher.

This is one of those expenses that is often not accounted for. It’s one of those ones too that you could end up spending way too much on something either not wanted or unnecessary, because you didn’t plan ahead.

The thought does count

I count a number of teachers among my close circle of friends. I assure you, their career choice was not based on the end-of-the-year loot.

This is about recognizing the place that your child’s teacher had in their life this year- and is an official way to express your thanks.

Get personal

What does your teacher like to do? Do they have any hobbies? Don’t let your gift end up in the pile with the others, most likely to go home and collect dust over the summer.

Get your child to do a little detective work at school. Does Mrs. So-and-so carry a mug in the class (possible coffee drinker)? Where does she go at lunchtime (out for powerwalks with the librarian)? Does she have children (does she look for fun activities to do with them, much like you do)? Does she have fancy colourful nails (manicure)?

If you can come up with a gift idea that stays within the budget and is useful- well A+ for you.

The group

There is a mom in my son’s class that I adore. Yes, she’s smart and funny- but that’s not the real reason I like her (it is a bonus though). It’s that for the last several years she has taken it upon herself to organize a group gift for a gift certificate from a local restaurant that she knows the teacher likes. All I have to do is send her the cash. It’s perfect.

This ends up costing you much less money in the long run- and you know it is a gift that teacher will want and use. Take charge this year and organize a group gift.