What Your Kids’ First Day of School Teacher Gifts Say About Them


Some kids hate to show up empty-handed on the first day of school. Though they might know their new teacher, they still want to make a good impression. Sure, it might have started with shiny red apples, but these days kids are really showing their personalities when they hand a little something over.

A few days before my daughter started second grade, she asked me for one of those blank books I had picked up at the craft store over the summer. I told her where they were, and went back to whatever it was I was doing (probably laundry—there is always laundry). A few weeks later I was in her classroom for parent visitation night, and went up to shake her teacher’s hand. As soon as we locked eyes, she laughed and said, “You must be Mrs. Bongiorno—I feel like I already know you,” then looked over to the wall…

On the first day of school, my 7-year-old daughter’s teacher handed every student a piece of lined paper and asked them to write one paragraph about themselves so they could all get to know one another better. My girl raised her hand while pulling a 12-page handwritten autobiography out of her backpack that detailed everything anyone ever wanted to know about her, her parents, brother, and cat, and said, “I made this for you. Do I still have to write something else?” So that night when I followed her teacher’s glance I finally saw my daughter’s creation: a big, beautiful, full-color book hanging on the wall, surrounded by quick little paragraphs on lined paper. Yep, that’s my kid.

Here are what the most common first-day gifts say about our kids (including my own).

1. An apple
She’s a traditionalist.

2. A hug
He already misses Mom.

3. An “All About Me” handwritten book
She’s a storyteller who will likely never ever stop talking.

4. A painting, drawing, or other crafty present
He’s an artist (pronounced “ar-TEEST”).

5. A gift card to Starbucks
She understands the value of caffeine to grown-ups.

6. A box of Godiva chocolates
His mom knows exactly how much of a handful he is.

Photo: Getty