I'm making a pretty big cake for the graduation reception so I don't have much time to do much else. . .what is everyone making/buying? I will do a few dipped Oreos for each and would like to do decorated cookies but know I won't have time. Cupcakes? Anything small that is non-cake related?
Teachers, what are your favorite and least favorite gifts to receive?
I've asked this before on here. The resounding answer from teachers was no candles, plants, mugs, picture frames and a lot didn't even want baked goods. What they did want was pictures/letters from the students, items for the class room or gift cards.
Gift cards to bookstores... don't worry once they get to high school this stops :0)
Best for me:
Note/letter from kids or parents
Bottle of wine - easily regiftable if you don't like that type.
Gift cards - though not from a local shop if you know the teacher will be leaving town.
I actually like getting soap - I got annoyed when I had to buy some one year - but I know some people don't like particular types or are allergic.
Any Knick Knack
Any knick knack with something cutesy about teachers on it
Chocolates - easily melted
Flowers - difficult to transport
Picture frames - especially with your child's picture in it
Mkolmar, good ideas, thanks! I know there was a big thread last year but nothing is coming up for me in the search. . .
cakemom--I hope so! One of my friends was even buying for her son's crossing guard and bus driver!
mccaulir, great ideas and advice!
Id agree, letters and cards made by the students are super great!!!
As a new teacher I find myself constantly buying for the classroom so i love to recieve gifts that are things for the classroom, or giftcards to classroom friendly stores like staples, lakeshore, etc.
Baked goods are great too...when I'm dieting I bring them home to share with family or in the teachers lounge with other staff.
Knick knacks are definately the pits, never know what to do with them.
OK, teachers, what about this idea, good or bad? Storage boxes...to keep all of that stuff you get. I am thinking of those beautiful boxes with lids, suitable for stuffing into closets OR stacking somewhere visible, whatever your need. Kind of like this http://www.target.com/Lumps-Sugar-Collapsible-Storage-Flocked/dp/B002PJUQ7G/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&searchView=grid3&qid=1275892386&frombrowse=0&fromGsearch=true&node=1038576%7C1287991011&keywords=storage%20boxes&searchSize=30&id=Lumps%20Sugar%20Collapsible%20Storage%20Flocked&searchBinNameList=purchasing_channel%2Csubjectbin%2Cprice%2Ctarget_com_primary_color-bin%2Ctarget_com_size-bin%2Ctarget_com_brand-bin&searchNodeID=1038576%7C1287991011&searchRank=target104545&sr=1-3&searchPage=2&rh=
When I was teaching, I liked to get books for my classroom, gift cards for stuff I could use in my classroom, and handwritten notes/cards from the kids. (One Christmas I did get a handmade fresh cut pine centerpiece for my table that I loved.)
I didn't like things I had no use for like knick-knacks, pictures, costume jewelry, etc. I was also leery of home baked goods. I would only eat them if I personally knew the cook.
I give Cold Stone gift cards, gourmet baked good or chocolates (they love my pastries) or gifts from Bath and Bodyworks. They are in the middle of a huge sale right now, and you will find many great deals. I just look for items that aren't too heavily perfumed like the Warm Vanilla Sugar. The hand soaps and antibacterials have also gotten good responses. I also like Avon products like their sunscreen, bug repellent, seasonal beach bags, etc.
I give baked goods every year and the teachers come to love and expect it from me...They all know I have a business so they love my goodies...I usually do about 4 cupcakes in a box all tied up with pretty ribbon.It is cheap to do and affordable and not just a trinket from the store.I almost always have cupcakes in the freezer so I just take them out..ice them...a few decorations and bang they are done...
usually I give baked goods but I was SO SWAMPED this year that I settled for a crystal (I'm sure it was cut glass) apple paper weight (got it at AC Moore, I think it was like 2.99 or something lol)
Both of the teachers that received them thought they were beautiful and loved having them on their desks, since when kids zoom by the papers will usually fly up and OFF the desk, now they won't.
Have you thought about cupcake bouquets? People LOVE those things!
Here's a pic of the paper weight
You know, I think the loveliest thing is a letter telling you how you influenced the student and what you meant to them. I have one that a student gave me years ago and it still it makes me smile to take it out and read it. I liked small boxes of chocolates and I would have loved baked goods and a bottle of wine is always a lovely gift. I also think stationery makes a nice gift.
The worst gift would have to be the Budgie my husband's class decided to gift him with last year. Whilst I have no problem with people having pet birds, I personally hate the thought of keeping something locked in a cage that was designed to fly. If I had wings, I'd want to fly! Anyway, we had to go and buy the whole cage and set up (cost us $100) and then the bird escaped when the kids accidentally knocked the latch ... 2 days before Christmas (and only 3 weeks after receiving the gift)! So my husband snuck down to the Pet Shop and bought another because the kids (aged 3 and 2) were so distressed. Of course, my 3 year old immediately asked what happened (he's pretty observant) so we told him the bird lost weight from all the flying and he was a bit dirty from the trip. He didn't really buy it - but he's 3 so we got away with it (after answering the same questions for 10 days). Fast forward about 3 weeks and a phenomenally hot day and the poor new bird died of heat stroke. He was outside, under a deck but still overheated. We haven't replaced him ... yet. The kids keep asking. I just couldn't believe that a parent let their child give a live animal as a gift! A fish would have been fine and we should be grateful ... the same kids gave another teacher at the school a pet rat!!! God love the high schoolers! It's certainly a gift we'll always remember. My husband said the students were positively bouncing with excitement to give it to him. Half the class put in to buy it, the other half had too much common sense and decided a carton of beer would be more appropriate!!!
this year i'm making fudge in an apple cookie cutter, fairly cheap, and if the teacher doesn't want it she can leave in the break room and someone will eat it.
my sons kindergarden class had 12 students and he had one teacher and one par-pro...all the parents went together and purchased 2 gift cards for a nice jewelry store......they were both thrilled
Great ideas everyone, thanks and keep them coming--I have *some* time left!
I'm making a batch of "Chocolate Crack Cookies" and buying a gift card to a bookstore. My son has read every single one of the classroom books and 9 yr olds are not easy on paperbacks so I'm giving back to the "book fund" and sweetening the deal with the cookies! LOL!
As a former teacher I think gift cards are your best bet. Then they can pick out something they really want. Some places I liked best were Starbucks, Dunkin Donuts, Barnes and Noble, Borders, Bath and Body Works or Yankee Candle.
In my school all baked goods got thrown out I know that will horrify many of you but all the teachers were leery of that kind of stuff.
In my opinion stay away from anything "teacher" looking with apples and ABC on it, ornaments, perfume(one year i got homemade BLUE perfume), picture frames and anything with kids handprints all over it. I hate to sound so mean but how much of that can teachers have, and really we don't need a photo of your child in the frame as someone else mentioned!
For those of you who have bought, or are buying this year, the gift cards, how much do you spend and how many do you buy for?
I will be purchasing gift cards for the teachers (2), TA's (3) and bus driver. I haven't decided on an amount yet. I did find a cute litte book in Halmark for about $9 for my son to give to one of the teachers in addition to the gift card.
I am my daughter's teacher. Her smiling face and giant bear hug every morning are my great gifts!
Anyway, my daughter does have some music teachers to thank (violin, chorus.) We are giving them a book about the history of music that I found on clearance for $7 and a $5 gift card to Barnes & Noble. At Christmas we gave them $10 Target gift cards and dipped oreos & brownie santa hats. Every month she gives her violin teacher a new pack of cool stickers (the teacher loves stickers ad puts them on everything.) I usually try to keep the price around $10. Oh, we also gave the violin teacher a $10 gift certificate to her favorite online music store for her birthday. (We see the violin teacher twice as much as the chorus teacher, and have known her longer.)
I was going to make insulated water bottle holders for each of them, but didn't have time to do that.
I usually fo some baked goods in a baskett along with classroom supplies like crayons , markers, highlighters,pens pencils,and some realy cool flash cards that were dryerase they had math problems that the students could write the answers on and then wipe off the teachers seemed to love these
I'm sure by now you have solved your issue, but what I made this year was for 2 teachers, 1 music teacher, 1 librarian, 1 principal, 2 office ladies, 1 other parent (who is always at the classroom helping out) and 1 bus driver. I found a pkg of goodie bags that had like over 100 in them, so I filled them up with various candies that I made. I made chocolate covered raisins, white chocolate bark with dried cranberries and cherries, homemade rocky road, root beer float flavored cake pops, white chocolate pretzels, and hershey kiss pretzels. I also included cookie mix in a jar for the 2 teachers and bus driver, as my kids have an hour bus ride every morning, and sometimes in the afternoon...hth...and btw, I had barely any time to do any of this, I was very busy the last week of school, but each thing is not too time consuming, I made sev...Each of the teachers/personnell that received something knows how much I love baking and were constantly asking me for my expertise throughout the year...each one gave me a giant hug when I gave it to them...Now granted the school my kids go to, the teachers are used to receiving something that is a gift card, but they knew that MY time went into making their gifts. Some of the teachers I know so I threw in extras for their kids too...small town...
as a teacher (former 4th grade, now high school)
GIFT CARDS --- to spoil me rotten places...
and restaurants -- fancy sit down kind -- are a GREAT choice. So busy and cash strapped most of time that to go to a place and be waited on and have a real -- not $1 -- menu to choose from is heaven.
Ruby Tuesdays! (and their Ruby Relaxers -- oh, boy after a year do I need relaxin'!)
Texas Roadhouse (oh too much to love there!)
Outback (bloomin crazy for their bloomin onion!)
and even better if there is a NON-chain local high quality specialty restaurant (like Luigi's in Fayetteville NC) try for one there too.
while classroom supplies MIGHT seem a good idea -- it really depends upon what is taught, how it is taught and what is really needed.
what lots of teacher REALLY need -- COPY PAPER and lots of it. (and construction paper -- especially the big size)/
and a really great place for a gift certificate -- the local TEACHER SUPPLY store -- then can get exactly what is needed.
All good ideas, thanks! I have to get out tomorrow to get something! I was looking for something more personal and not school-related. I'm doing the Oreos tonight, I know they all loved them last time I made them, and will probably go with the gift cards. Thanks to the teachers here who posted what they *don't* like, that helps just as much!
I bought Target gift cards this year for $15 each and gift cards to the local grocery store for $20. Everyone is so hard hit in our area that the teachers were beyond happy to receive gift cards again. One of the aids has been after me all year for one of the icing recipes I use. I gave it to her at the end of the year.
I have 4 kids and between all of the teachers and aids as well as the speech therapist I spent a lot of money.
I think I might do these for the teachers this year:
I always do baked teacher's gifts so this year I thought I'd simplify my life a little by giving something that I can make ahead of time. We also give the kids' main teacher a gift voucher, over the years it has been to the book store, the cinema, restaurants, cash n'carry stores - the most popular one was the book store!