It's that time of year again. The weather is getting warmer, and the kids are starting to whisper phrases like "summer vacation," and "no homework" with more and more enthusiasm. While summer brings us many wonderful things, it also brings about the end of a special relationship; the one shared between your child and his or her teacher.
I for one am very blessed to live in an area with excellent schools. My children reap the rewards of their teachers' many and varied efforts on a daily basis and I'm so very thankful for all of their sacrifice, experience, and excitement. This year I wanted to do something special for my daughters' teachers to show them just how much their work this past year has been appreciated.
There are several ways you can create a thank-you gift for that special teacher in your life. It doesn't need to be an extravagant gesture, but something unique and personal is always appreciated. I was once told by a friend who teaches elementary school that she loved the gesture, but if one more apple-themed item came across her desk she might scream. After 10 years of teaching she had hundreds of pins, totes, cards, mugs, and various handmade items that featured the "apple for teacher" motif.
Instead of using the traditional colors or themes related to schooling I've tried to keep the personalities of these special people in mind and create something unique that suits their taste and hobbies. Something unexpected is always fun!
My younger daughter has a teacher this year with a true green thumb. I decide to create a flower-garden-themed gift assortment for her.
Inside the embellished metal pail I placed wildflower seeds and gardening gloves, and I used coordinating papers to decorate a small 4" x 6" brag book to hold pictures of her lovely garden.
A decorated tag finishes off this little gift very nicely.
- metal pail - Target
- wildflower seeds - Target
- garden gloves - Target
- 4" x 6" brag book - Thompson Products Inc.
- patterned paper - Red Burlap (Flair Designs), Pinwheel Flower (Daisy D's)
- ribbon - Offray
- paper lace - Narratives by Karen Russell
- stamps - Flower, Thank You (Stampin Up), Swirl (Autumn Leaves)
- stamp pads - Stampin Up
- felt flowers - K&Company, Wild Saffron Line
- rub-on letters - Making Memories
- adhesives - Xyron 900
- tools - Scallop Scissors (Fiskars)
Treats for Teacher
My oldest daughter's fourth-grade teacher has quite the sweet tooth! I wanted to include some yummy chocolates for him to enjoy, and thought that a few custom-made, monogrammed desk items would be a lovely addition.
Inside the desk caddy - created from altered chipboard coasters - you'll find the candy, a monogrammed note pad, Post-it notes, and a coordinating mini photo album.
- coasters - unknown
- notepads - - Mead
- mini Post-it Notes - Target
- 4" x 6" brag book - Thompson Products Inc.
- patterned paper - Paper Loft, Sanded Geometric Line
- chipboard letters - Rusty Pickle
- stamp pad - Tim Holtz Distress Ink, Walnut Stain
- tools - Hole Punch, Karen Foster Designs Scraparatus
- adhesive - Xyron 900, hot glue gun
- twine - unknown
- wood tag - Darice
- button - unknown
Some other ideas I have thought would be nice are:
- custom photo calendars for the next school year
- cookbook and spice sets
- handmade stationary
- BBQ gift set
- coffee house/Starbucks gift card
- mini scrapbook
- art supplies
- altered picture frame
- an assortment of disposable cameras to take classroom photos throughout the year
- bath supplies or hand lotion
- monogrammed thank-you notes
Whatever their interest you can find wonderful scrapbook papers to coordinate with the gift theme and create an altered box, pot, or basket of some kind to hold the goodies you've found for them.
I was once told that the average teacher spends a few hundred dollars each year to provide additional supplies for their classroom. A simple and thoughtful gift is a gift card to your local craft, home supply, or office supply store inside a handmade card. Books are also treasured classroom gifts. By purchasing a new book and crafting a special tag with your scrapbook supplies you'll giving a gift that benefits next year's students as well.
Don't forget the other professionals in your school either. Does your child have a special relationship with a councilor, librarian, or other school employee? Let's try to find ways to do what we love - scrapbooking - to create a thank-you gift they'll never forget.
Remember the most beloved gifts are those from the heart. So put some thought into how you can do something special for the teachers in your children's lives, because our dedicated teachers sure put a lot of heart and soul into their work!