Presents for Teachers and Carers that Don’t Suck

Christmas gifts for teachers

I have started writing lists of things to do before Christmas – with so much going on, I need a very thorough list. When it comes to Christmas and end-of-year obligations there are always a few things that leave me stumped. Presents for teachers is one of those things.

What do you get a person that you don’t necessarily know very well but has spent so much time with your child? How do you say thank you for nurturing my kid, teaching him and somehow staying sane in the process? 

When I asked my teacher friends what they liked to receive the answers were varied but there was a common theme. One teacher always gets alcohol, but she doesn’t drink alcohol. Another has a bucket full of face and body creams she is unable to use due to her sensitive skin. Most of them didn’t think they could look at another box of chocolates at Christmas time, let alone consume one. Often people buy for a teacher, but not for their child’s teacher. A little re-con goes a long way. Either ask directly or suss it out with another teacher. Go beyond the generic.

Related content: 5 ways to partner with your child’s teacher

A popular gift, particularly amongst the teachers of younger grades, is presents the children have a hand in making. I have always worried about this. That it is somehow presumptuous and a little arrogant to think that a teacher wants something handmade by my little darling. But teachers do appreciate those handmade cards, ornaments and letters. My youngest’s daycare teacher said she loved getting photos of the kids she had looked after during the year. Teachers also really appreciate thoughtful notes of thanks from parents.

So what presents can you give teachers and day carers that they will actually love?

Presents from individual kids

  • A christmas ornament hand-made by your child. These great ideas that would hang proudly on any tree.
  • A handmade card with a drawing by or photo of your child.
  • A hand-written thank you note from you.
  • Gingerbread that your child has helped make.
  • A lovely potted plant. Try these succulents for a kid-friendly gardening project.
  • A favoured picture book that can be enjoyed by next year’s class.
  • A diary planner for the next year.
  • If they drink coffee, a Keep Cup and a pre-paid voucher for a few coffees at their favourite cafe
  • Small and practical items that you think would appeal to your teacher’s tastes.

Presents from the class

By pooling classroom funds, you can get something you know your teacher will love and use.

  • Gift vouchers are a great idea – and work well with pooled resources.
  • A selection of teas & a beautiful tea cup and strainer (if they drink tea).
  • Each child to donate a book they love for the classroom. Check with the teacher or teacher’s aide first as to the titles they already have. For a cute touch, the kids could each add a brief book review.
  • The summer break is often the only opportunity teachers get to relax and catch up on their non-school related reading. A basket they can take to the beach filled with sunscreen, magazines and either a few paperbacks or a voucher for a bookstore would be a welcome holiday addition.
  • Flowers in a lovely vase.
  • A gorgeous Christmas hamper filled with the kind of luxe deli items you never buy for yourself.
  • A personalised print with all the things the kids in your class love about their teacher or for younger grades drawings of their teacher collated into one print. You can frame it, or get it printed onto aprons, tea towels, cushions and so on. This is one we made for one of my children’s teachers last year:

    Sample Teacher Present

  • Another artwork idea is to have a picture by each of the kids in the class made into a Mini Masterpiece by Land of Zonkt. You can add the class name and year to one of the little pictures.
  • A donation to your teacher’s favourite charity is always appreciated.

Teachers always love the gifts their students give them, but taking a little extra time to think about your individual teacher will start their holidays with an extra-wide smile.

Any other ideas?

More gifts to give this Christmas: