3 things teachers will never tell you about holiday gifts. (And 8 inexpensive presents they will love)

During the holiday seasons students and parents often give teachers a little token to say thanks. However here’s a list of things teachers would NEVER tell you about the beloved holiday presents:

  1. We won’t eat your baking – We’ve spend all day with your kids and we know how “well” they wash their hands, and how snotty, slimy, and sticky they can get. The reality is that as much as home baked cookies are a wonderful thought, the reality is that they will probably make a quick trip to the trash once we get them home.
Girl licking fingers while baking
Little baker’s hands often share more then love…
  1. There IS such thing as too much chocolate. It’s not a personal gift and we just end up giving it to our families or neighbours.
  2. We don’t need another Starbucks Mug – Okay, maybe we want one, but do we really need one? Probably not. It’s an easy, on the go gift, but not all that personable.

Here’s 8 inexpensive, PERSONALIZED quality gifts that you can give instead:

  1. Custom quotes – Find a quote that really reminds you of the teacher. There’s a ton of great quote sites out there like http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/topics/topic_teacher.html. You can easily print off a great quote at home and either purchase a picture frame from the dollar store or modge podge it onto a canvas (even cheaper) Total cost- Less then $5. Sentential Value – Priceles
  2. Framed Woordle – Create a wordle of your teachers names and things that your child likes about class. This can actually work out to be quite entertaining! Once it’s all done and framed up in a nice frame, it’s something that teachers can display and enjoy. Check out a sample creation. Total cost- Less then $5. Sentential Value – Priceles
  3. “Cookies in a Jar” – teachers love this because it makes their life easier, and they get to par take in the baking process. Just search for “cookies in a jar” on Pinterest for inspiration!  Total Cost $
  4. Hot lunches – Pay for your teachers next hot lunch. It’s a small amount and they will appreciate the free meal. Partner up with other parents to cover different months and the teachers will enjoy a hot lunches for the rest of the year! Approximate Cost $5
  5. Coordinated Group Gifts – If everyone gives in $5 towards a group gift you can buy the teacher something that they wouldn’t get otherwise. This could be dinner and a movie, special theatre tickets, sporting event tickets, or some other experience they wouldn’t have otherwise.
  6. Uncoordinated Group Gifts – Chat with the other parents at pick up and let them know that you’ll be buying a gift card to ______. (Chapters, Spa, Home Depot, Restaurant, The Mall, Sporting Goods Store) This is where you can really make it personal and tune into their interests.
  7. Lottery Tickets – A thoughtful card with a couple scratch and wins or a lottery ticket is not only a nice way to personally say thanks, but it’s also a chance at winning big! It’s an activity and a gift all in one!
  8. Think outside the box – Look at local businesses and think of something really different. Perhaps you bring in a mobile spa at lunch to spoil your teacher with a chair massage? Maybe you buy them a gift card to a local nursery for them to use in the spring. Perhaps it’s a family day trip to a local attraction.

In summary – a little extra effort goes a long way. It doesn’t have to be expensive but teachers really appreciate it when a little thought and effort goes into the gift giving process. After all, they do spend their whole days with our children!And don’t forget to say thank you for the other leaders in your children’s lives. Dance instructors, Guide and Scout Leaders, Music Teachers… they all appreciate a little thank you this time of year.Happy creating!!!JamiDid you like this post? Say thanks by liking, sharing, or following us on social media. Thanks! Here’s a quote I modge podged for a teacher last year:


Jami Savage
Jami Savage
Jami Savage is one of the top Family Travel Writers in Canada, and has been featured on CTV and Vancouver Sun, and more. Go here to read our families story about how we went from backyard adventurers to world travelers, and how you can do the same. If you want to send Jami a quick message, visit her contact page here.

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  1. So true!!!! Your gift ideas for teachers and other adults in kids lives are great! This year we coordinated a gift for my son’s teacher and it was great. We picked different gift certificates for a theme night of dinner and a movie and then put them all inside a frame. The kids in the class signed the frame so that it can be used with the class picture. As a teacher myself it is so much easier to deal with one picture to hang up in the class than 20 mugs and chocolate that I won’t use. Thanks Jami for sharing!


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Jami Savage

Full Time Travel Writer, Mom who is passionate about empowering and educating travelers on how you can use your own tourism dollars as a catalyst for positive change worldwide. Click here to learn more about us, our family, and how we lead an adventure filled life!

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