Teacher Appreciation Week

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May 5th – May 9th, 2019

So next week is teacher appreciation week. I adore the fact that we have a week to show our appreciation to the ones who, I personally think have the most important job ever.

I learned that people started celebrating National teacher day in 1959. This was because Eleanor Roosevelt, bless her heart, persuaded Congress to choose a day, set aside, to recognize educators. It didnt become a national day until 1980 and in 1984 it was stretched to a week.

Of course, I think the same way about teachers as I do moms. They should be shown appreciation and recognition every day. Not just when it mentions it on the calendar. None the less, I like to do my best to make the teachers I know feel the appreciation.

Today I want to focus on our early childhood teachers. Those that work in our preschool, head-starts, childcare centers. Those that commit their days to caring for and teaching children between newborn to 5 years old. These early childhood educators have come a long way since being called “baby sitters” {insert–I have never sat on a baby joke} to being recognized as teachers. They truly have such an important job. We know the greatest time for learning is the first 3 years of life, so how can those who care for and teach those children be called anything but teachers. Everything they do, everything they say has an impact on the children in their class. What a great responsibility these special people have. A great responsibility and the most honorable career anyone can choose to pursue.

I know some may disagree with it being the most honorable but these special people we call teachers spend their days (and usually their nights) thinking about the children the interact with each day. They plan special activities that are developmentally appropriate, they gather (and usually pay for themselves) supplies for those activities and then they implement these activities all to engage, grow and teach each child a skill they will use for life. I have never used the algebra I learned in high school since being an adult but boy, I sure of had to share, be patient, wait my turn and use my manners. Some of the most important skills are taught by these unsung heroes.

Each year, since being a director, I am asked, “what is a good gift for the teachers”. Well after many thoughts, inquiries to my current staff of teachers and my own experiences, I have come up with the top 10 most loved teacher appreciation gifts. Now these range in ease, cost and convenience so choose what suits you and your family but know any act of appreciation shown to your child’s teacher will touch their heart more than you will ever know.

  1. Something home made. Check out my pinterest board for some great ideas.
  2. A special, handwritten note or thank you card.
  3. A donation made to a children’s charity in their name. (Childhelp, Inc; Children’s Defense Fund; Make-a-wish foundation; St. Judes Hospital; Zero to Three: National Center for Infants, Toddlers and Families)
  4. A bottle of wine (yes teachers drink wine too). Red is always popular but trust that all is a good gift.
  5. Restaurant gift cards: Two choices here are tops-either a close lunch spot for those who can sneak out for lunch or spend a bit more on a fancier restaurant that normally wouldn’t qualify on a teachers salary.
  6. Gift card to a food delivery service–who wants to cook every night? (Personal chefs to Go is my favorite)
  7. Spa gift certificate
  8. Something for the classroom–all teachers can use and love, sharpies, post it notes, adult size scissors, a new clip board, a butterfly growing kit, these items are coveted.
  9. Amazon gift card. Let them choose how to spend it.
  10. A three day cruise to the Bahamas (ok, a bit extreme and expensive but would be loved and just think how appreciated they would feel.

The reality is any thoughtful gift is appreciated. Trust me, most teachers are not materialistic, they love gifts from the heart. Whatever the gift, include a handwritten note. Be sure and mention your child’s name and put the date on it. (We keep those things forever and ever).

Whatever you choose to do, please, please, please take a moment out of your busy week to thank the teachers who care for and teach your children every day. They deserve to know how much we all appreciate their work and that their efforts and dedication does not go unnoticed.

One thought on “Teacher Appreciation Week

  1. Dear Jane, thank you for your inspiring post!! It really makes me see the difference we are making in the lives of children and makes me not regret transitioning into the fired of early-years education.


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