Teacher Appreciation

One year at Lil O's former Montessori school, I was the coordinator of school spirit, which really meant making the teachers and staff feel appreciated.  I was soooo happy to have that job.  I loved coming up with "gift packs" for each teacher and staff member with my $20 budget for each (paid by the Parent Association).  I surveyed all the teachers and staff at the beginning of the school year to find out their interests and favorites - favorite colors, Starbucks drink, style of home decor, music, etc.

You can kind of see in the photo above the "gift packs" I would put together.  I needed to blur the image a bunch to keep the names semi-private.  This is the Internet after all, right?

Gift packs for teachers:
  • Box of favorite tea.  I found Trader Joe's and Target had the best prices.
  • Beaded necklace I would create in their favorite color.  I have quite a collection of beads, so I literally didn't need to buy any supplies for this; I already had them!
  • Framed photo of students.  I found great deals on frames at Joanns, Michaels and Home Goods.
  • CD with favorite music and a recording of the children singing Happy Birthday to them,  I used the "Voice Memos" app on my iPhone to record this.
  • Card with messages from all the families* and all the children's signatures.  I think kids' signatures are priceless.
  • Framed Wordle created with words that described the teacher or staff member*.
From what I understand, the teacher appreciation gift packs were a bit hit.  I know the teachers and staff thanked me a lot.

Educators and school staff sometimes are under-recognized for the amazing love and nurturing they provide to students.  Have you shown your appreciation to an educator or ally lately?

Just wondering....


* In order to efficiently gather parents and families' birthday messages and descriptive words for the Wordle, I used the free Survey Monkey and made a survey with two questions:  1)  Describe the teacher in 3-5 words, and 2) What is your birthday message for Mr./Ms. XYZ?  Then, I emailed the survey link to all the parents and families and set a deadline to complete it.  Once completed, I simply copied and pasted their responses into a Word document or the Wordle template.  It was easy peasy that way.