No more pencils, no more books, no more crying in the reading nook.

It came without ribbons! It came without tags! It came without packages, boxes or bags! You KNOW what I’m talking about – the end of the school year!

I’ve had several requests from friends out there for suggestions for end of the year teacher gifts, and since I’ve been teacher for lots of years (20 or more…cough, cough) I just might be an expert in this area.

First, I want to make it clear that teachers DO NOT expect gifts. I really, really mean that. We appreciate your support all year long with homework, snacks, field trip chaperoning, etc., and we all feel that we receive “gifts” all year long. I am not just blowing smoke here.

However, if you ARE looking for either teacher gifts, or student teacher gifts, here are my TOP TEN!!!

1. A subscription to Mailbox Magazine - You can find this magazine at www.theeducationcenter.com or something like that. It is the GREATEST resource for teachers. It has ideas generated from teachers on ALL areas in the curriculum, and it’s got one for kindergarten, first grade, etc. It. Is. The. Best. Thing. Ever. (And they did NOT pay me to say that.

2. A book to the school library in your teacher’s name. Too cool to even elaborate on.

3. A plant for the school garden. (If they have one!)

4. Is there a craft store in your area? A gift card to a Michael’s or something like that is great. We always need items for projects- and this way the kids benefit as well!

5. Amazon.com is an incredible thing. I received several last year and bought some great new books for my classroom! Since I’ve been teaching a while I tend to use my oldies but goodies. Having the gift certificate allowed me to shop online and find some great new books!

6. Barnes and Nobles. Enough said.

7. There are cool scissors at craft stores that cut in a variety of shapes- not just straight lines! Teachers love these- but might not use their classroom money for them. They also come in a cool carousel. They are great when the kids make cards, have free time or in writer’s workshop.

8. If you are buying for a new teacher, here are some MUST HAVE BOOKS: Morning Meeting; The First Six Weeks of School; Classroom Spaces that Work; Off to a Great Start. All of these resources are from Responsive Classroom and can be found at Barnes and Nobles, or at www.responsiveclassroom.org .

9. If you want to buy a humorous book for ANY teacher, buy Thirty Two Third Graders and One Class Bunny by Philip Done. It is HYSTERICAL. I read it over and over and over. I laugh every time. Or, you can wait for a couple of weeks when my "The Book of Frank" will be coming out as an e-book. (I'm working on it, people. WORKING on it.)

10.A really cool whistle. Or bell. Or sound maker.

11. A gift card to STARBUCKS. (Okay, maybe that’s just me.)

12. Games for the classroom (age appropriate, or course.) We use games throughout the year, and of course pieces go missing, boxes get broken, etc. Teachers will probably NOT throw stuff out, and will keep using it, unless forced to use a NEW ONE if it’s given to them. (hint hint.)

Crap, is that more than ten? You people KNOW I can’t count. Hope it helps! Otherwise, give her a bottle of wine. Teacher DO enjoy that….


Julie said...

My SIL is a teacher here and was RAVING the other night about a personal gift from one of the kids (parent). The parent had spent a fair amount of time in the classroom this year so she knew my SIL liked Diet Coke and Reese's peanut butter cups.

And that's what she got, in a neat little bag. And she talked about it all night.

RottenMom said...

You forgot the mug with the apple that says #1 Teacher!! Ha!

Just bought a bunch of Amazon cards, glad they were on your list. I've been wanting to read "Thirty Two Third Graders and One Class Bunny", going to order it for myself. Thanks for the list, I shall save it for future reference!

prettylittlereckless said...

I don't have kids, but this is a fantastic list for when I do!

And I REALLY hope you are working on that Frank book. Seriously, I smile so big when you post about him. :)

Vodka Mom said...

I received the "tub" of frozen Margarita mix last year! It was too cool.

Pastor Sharon said...

Great list! Gosh I wish you had been in our lives when Jody was in school!

Amy said...

YEAH, school's out!!! Does that mean some summer vacationing for you? I hope you get a little break from all the crazies!
Speaking of craft supplies, have you been to my blog lately? I'm trying to sell A LOT of my craft closet supplies. You know first hand how much is there. I haven't listed NEAR all of it yet, but I do have some of those cool scissors. If you know of anyone wanting/needing items like these send them my way. Or email me with specifics you might be looking for. Ya never know, I just might send my favorite K teacher a care package. : )

SkylersDad said...

Congrats on another year of making a huge difference in the lives of those kids!

Brian Miller said...

congrats VM! glad you made it through...and my mom used to be a teacher (an for 2 years i was) so i really hope teacher gifts have improved in the last 12 years...

Voices in My Head said...

Great list! And no, it's not just you. Starbucks would be at the top of my list, too.

The Book of Frank?!?! Be still my heart!

Lynn MacDonald said...

So wait! The bottle of Xanax I gave wasn't a good idea? SHIT!!!

Oh well, there's always next year

Rick Daley said...

You can count on me to buy a copy of the Book of Frank ;-)

Enjoy your summer!

Dawn said...

Yeah... I wouldn't turn away ANY of those gifts!! And, no, Starbucks isn't just on YOUR list.

Book of Frank?? Can't wait!!!!

The Empress said...

A Frank E book!!


He MUST be documented.

Fiducia said...

Congrats on successfully completing yet another year..hope more goodies are in store for you this year too!

Mellodee said...

Really??? A Book of Frank?? Good for you! That kid is going places, and your ebook will be the first in a long bibliographie outlining his life, I'm sure!! And he will have to admit somewhere down the road, that YOU were his favorite teacher of all time and he owes all of his success to you!

However, just in case he ends of in the State Pen, you might want to consider using a pseudonym!

(The day he wore his brother's glasses all day is my favorite....that is just Frank all over!!) Love that kid!

So. Cal. Gal said...

Here's hoping you have a Frances in next year's class! ; )

Lynn from For Love or Funny said...

The Book of Frank will probably have enough material to become the Encyclopedia of Frank! Can't wait to see it! :)

Captain Dumbass said...

Love the book dedication idea, that's great. I'm forwarding this to Supreme Leader now. Luckily we still have two weeks to go. Or is that unluckily? Probably not since I'm pretty sure that's not a word.

Pseudo said...

Happy Summer Vodka!

darsden said...

:-) enjoy your summer vacation!

Mrs4444 said...

These ideas are terrific. Really, I couldn't agree more with ALL of the post. This year, I bought myself a little gift to celebrate the first year of my Difference Makers club--I paid to have a post made from photos I took of our various activities. It's awesome. So, a Snapfish gift certificate would also be nice for the right teacher/coach.

Lolo Lyons said...

I usually go with the Barnes and Noble gift card, or AMC Theatres. But this year, my friend the manicurist offered up gift certificates for manis and pedis, so I killed two birds with one stone! Did I do good?

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