Teachers are probably the closest things to superheroes many of us will encounter, but for whatever reason, finding the right gifts to express appreciation for them can be a huge challenge. We found out what teachers really want from students and parents…and what they don’t. These 18 teacher-approved presents have the personal and practical elements teachers of all grade levels love. The best part? It’s really easy to make your teacher’s day (or year), no matter your budget.
Save the apples for your own lunch and surprise your teacher with one of these thoughtful gifts instead.
1. The pencil sharpener that all the teachers are talking about
Seriously, teachers are all about this pencil sharpener that was created by a teacher with the sole purpose of eliminating every teacher’s number one annoyance: noisy pencil sharpeners. These colorful bad boys are quick, quiet and not falling off the wall by the classroom door.
2. Everyone loves a good book
Perhaps your teacher introduced you to an author who just released a new book, or maybe you read a story that reminded you of something your teacher said in class. Books can be great gifts for teachers because there are tons of opportunities to make them personal.
3. Personalized pencils
Nothing is worse than having your pencils stolen. Help your teacher keep track of their supplies with personalized school supplies, like these customized pencils.
4. Gift cards
When asked what their favorite gifts are, teachers commonly place gift cards near the top, especially for places nearby so they can enjoy some quality off-campus time. Think coffee shops, restaurants or movie vouchers.
5. Their go-to grading tool, but better
Teachers spend a huge amount of their time grading assignments, so giving them something to help with that process can be a great gift.
6. A bottle of nice wine
It’s simple and sure to get use while your teacher unwinds at home after class. We suggest that parents drop this gift off.
7. A new lanyard
A thoughtful gift to help your teacher keep their ID, classroom key and other necessities in one spot.
8. School supplies
Teachers usually pay out of pocket for the supplies in their classrooms, which can add up quickly. Pencils, pens, dry erase markers, coloring supplies, disinfecting wipes and tissues are used on a daily basis, so whenever teachers get a new stock of any classroom supplies, it’s a big help.
9. A movie night
Treat your teacher to a night at the movies. A gift certificate or a couple of tickets and concession vouchers is a fun gift that gives teachers an easy way to spend some time with a friend or loved one.
10. Sponsorship or donation to a cause close to their hearts
Teachers tend to work within limited space and may feel guilty when a gift must be given away because they simply don’t have room to keep it. Donating in their name to a cause they support is a thoughtful gift that doesn’t take up any space.