All right, lovely readers, I’m going to give it to you straight today. Right from the horse’s mouth: What do teachers really want for the holidays (and what they wish you would stop giving). I’m currently in my eighth year of teaching, am married to a teacher, and hang out with almost all teachers, so I know what I’m talking about when it comes to good teacher gift giving. Let’s break it down…
What Teachers Want:
1. Gift cards. If we could accept cash, we would, but that’s illegal (whatever) so gift cards are the next best thing. Popular gift cards include Amazon, Barnes and Noble, restaurants, and movie theaters. However, the clear favorite when it comes to teacher gift cards would be the tried and true Starbucks card. Every teacher I know drinks a lot of coffee and can’t really afford to splurge on Starbucks every day so a SB card is always going to be a hit.
2. Food. Candy, baked goods, and snacks are usually a hit with teachers. If we choose not to eat it ourselves, it’s always nice to have something to take home to the fam. I’ll include wine in this category because it is not given to teachers very often (for obvious reasons), but sure is appreciated if you can swing it.
3. Something personal. I’m hesitant to include this because it doesn’t apply to 95% of teacher gift giving situations, but there are certain occasions when you can get a teacher something that appeals to their personality, and they will love it. I love Disney (clearly). My students know this, and several over the years have gotten me little Disney tokens and trinkets that they knew I would like. I love these because they show thought, and many of them are things I would buy for myself anyway. However, be careful in this category. This should only be done with teachers that your student has a real connection to.
What Teachers Don’t Want:
1. Lotion/body wash/smelly stuff. These seem like thoughtful gifts (and really all gifts are thoughtful), but people can be very particular about their scents. And for people like me who don’t use scented body wash/lotion, I ended up either trashing those sets or regifting them (sorry).
2. A picture of your child. Seriously. Just don’t do it.
3. Any craft you found on Pinterest. I love crafting and I so appreciate the effort that goes into crafts, however, I do not want (nor do I have room for) a crayon monogram or homemade body scrub. Skip the crafts and grab the $5 gift card instead. You’ll save money and a whole lot of time.