December 01, 2009

Teacher Gift Ideas from Cozi Fans

Thank you, Cozi fans, for your great ideas for giving to teachers this holiday season!

  • Baskets and mugs from the dollar store
  • The kids make muffins and we recycle the babyfood jars and put cocoa mix w mini marshmallows in them.
  • Starbucks gift cards if I know they drink coffee. There is one right across the street from the school.
  • Anti-bacterial foaming hand soaps and give 2-5 of them depending on their role. It makes a nice little basket. What teacher doesn't need to get rid of those kid germs and smell pretty after!
  • As a former teacher, I always enjoyed the "usable" gifts like ornaments for my Christmas tree, soaps from Bath and Body Works, homemade cookies and candies, and gift cards (which I usually used to supplement our Christmas shopping.)
  • Movie tickets!
  • Candles! They are easy to re-gift, and they are use-able, so no more clutter!
  • Air freshers and candles. They are really cheap or free and make a goodie bag for sitters, teachers, etc.
  • My brother is a tile layer and he always has extra tile laying around. I give my son acrylic paints and he paints a picture for his teacher. We then put felt pads on the back and it makes a nice trivet for his teacher.
  • When mine were in elementary, I made the teachers a menu with items on it they can pick for dinner with a choice of dates. They turn it in to me with their choices and I deliver a home-cooked dinner for them to take home to their families so they don't have to cook on a certain night (conference dates, ballgame nights, etc.) Now that they are in high school, I host a party for them at the end of the year at a Mexican food place (the chips fill everyone up LOL) and I order fajitas for everyone.
  • Keep the kids home for a day.
  • Teachers always get really dry hands in the winter, I always get them Arbonne FC5 hand lotion and sea salt scrubs. Works great, no mineral oil.
  • I make them stationery using my scrapping and stamping supplies.
  • I like to give something that can be used in the classroom. For teachers in the younger grades, I find fun BIG picture books that are easy for the teacher to read while the kids look. For the older grades, I pick up the big packages of post-its, pens, dry erase markers, and sharpies from Sam's Club and divide them into sacks. This really helps when your kids have 7-9 teachers each!
  • Gift cards!! Panera, Starbucks, bagel places, PF Changs, etc. Anywhere for lunch or decent dinner! Also,I usually enclose some candy or baked good with it.

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From a teacher: ALL GIFT CARDS WELCOME!!!


Ideas are always wellcome!!!


With a son in special education, he has a bunch of teachers (speech, OT, regular teacher and two class aides, bus driver and bus aide) so I like to find gifts at Costco that come in bulk. This year I found a 4 pack of Christmas/winter mugs, each filled with cocoa, cookies, tea and candy canes. Each special teacher will get one of those. For the class teachers, I'm giving each a small holiday gift (something around $3-$5) and a gift card to Dunkin Donuts. The bus driver and aide are each getting a box of chocolate.


Another practical gift idea is a car wash ... whose car doesn't need a good wash in the winter! These are easy to slip in a card, and cheaper than a movie ticket - and you can get a book of washes and spread cheer to everyone for around $6 each (at least here in Indiana).


As a teacher, while all gifts are welcomed and appreciated, please NO MUGS! With 20 odd students each year, I probably will end the year with at least 10 new additions.

Gift cards are always the safest and most appreciated. Even to McD's or the like.


When thinking of teacher gifts, I always ask myself: How would I feel if I got 24 of this item? That is how I ruled out giving mugs and candles and said yes to hand sanitizer/lotion, chocolate, gift cards, note cards and other usable items.


From a teacher, now a mom too: no mugs, candles, etc. Definitely think about receiving 25-30 of the same gift! This is my daughter's first year at school and I'm giving some homemade chocolate bark (so easy to make!) along with a donation in the teacher's name to a charity that provides classroom supplies in the developing world.


I received a recipe for caramels that I make every year for my kids' teachers. I always put some in a nice container (with the recipe) and put some other goodies in along with them. We always send along extra school supplies throughout the year, so I don't look at those as Christmas gifts.


I can't imaging the horror of 24 little gifts from preschoolers and our preschool has 4 classes! Yikes - almost 100 gifts each year.

I organized a group gift for my son's preschool class. All of the parents gave money. I purchased a wall handing from a local decorative store and gave a gift from Heifer International to each of the 3 leaders in his class (1 teacher and 2 assistants.)

So much better than all of the little mugs and ornaments and stuff that they can't use. At least I hope so!


i chose donations from the world vision xmas catalogue for each of my son's 3 preschool teachers. one was for 3 soccer balls for kids in villages with no toys, another was 5 fruit trees to provide fresh fruit and income to a household, and books for a classroom in a developing nation.


The gift that we recieved the most responses ever for to teachers at Christmas time was for special handmade/decorated ornaments. We still have teachers come to my children this time of year and say,"I remember you everytime I put this on my tree at Christmas." The favorite was red,green or blue glass ornaments covered with white, tiny crocheted covering. But there are so many others, like putting a picture in a clear one with some ribbons inside..etc. Easy, inexpensive,fun and lasting memory for both.


Not wanting to contribute to the clutter with another nick-nack etc. I opted to make a consumable this year. I made my son's teacher a homemade loaf of honey whole wheat bread and purchased some gourmet jam to go with it, he said it was a big hit.


I have found a great little gift that I try to always keep on hand, I make knitted and sometimes crocheted dish rags or washclothes. Who can't use an extra dish rag or as for my daughter, she uses her's to wash her face...around Christmas time I have started making snowflakes as well, to give as little gifts.
God bless you all.

Sandra Lee

As a former teacher, I have to say I love any gift from a child no matter what it is. They are always beaming when they give it to you. I buy my own daughter's teachers Brighton key chains. I have done that for the last 7 years and when I see them (I work in the same school district.) many will say they still have them and love them and remember my daughter when they use them.


Think food. What teacher wouldn't like to have a free lunch at their favorite sandwich shop, deli or a burrito at Q-Doba? And don't limit your teacher gifts just to appreciation week or the holidays, it's all year long.


From a teacher: Please, please, mugs (I receive at least 4 each Christmas and I don't drink coffee), no ornaments (these are special to me and each one I place on my tree is picked by us as a family), no candles (allergies), and no homemade items unless we are really really close. It sounds awful but I don't eat or give to my family anything that I can't be sure came from a clean kitchen. You'd be shocked at the stories parents tell us of saving the Fall Festival cake after the cat walked on it. After awhile, you just get worried about cleanliness. (Remember we are the ones that watch your children pick their nose and eat it.) As for donations in my name, last year I "donated" $2,500 worth of supplies and items to my classroom by the time my accountant added up my receipts. If you want to donate...please don't call it a gift to me. I'm sure I sound very ungrateful and perhaps I am, but I have had some amazing parents that asked me what I needed for my class. Cotton balls, paper plates, wiggle eyes, and yarn make my heart sing. A gift card to WalMart is fantastic because I can pick up craft supplies for my classroom as needed, it doesn't matter that it is only for $5. That is a special ice cream party for my students or cooking igredients for a special activity. Offering to pick up lunch from...anywhere or offering to order pizza for the last day of school before Christmas, again two $5 pizza's are great. It isn't the amount of the gift, it is the thought. But the thought should reflect how appropriate it is for the person receiving it.

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