Most people agree that our favorite teachers deserve all the best, especially during the Christmas season. Here is a fun way to celebrate with 12 days of Christmas gifts for teachers to help you say thank you during this time of year. Remember to go beyond just remembering your child’s classroom teacher. Our bus drivers, specials teachers like the art, gym and music teacher and other support staff all appreciate little surprise gifts! I hope this list helps you get into the holiday spirit with some fabulous ideas for celebrating the educators in your life.
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1. School Supplies
As a former second grade classroom teacher, I know that most elementary school teachers spend a significant amount of money on school supplies. One of the best gifts you can give your child’s teacher are school supplies. By December, in the middle of the school year, supplies are starting to dwindle and some items like crayons, colored pencils, and glue sticks may need refreshing.
For your first daily gift, review the school supply list and consider which little gift you could send in for your first day of Christmas. If you are thinking ahead of time, consider stocking up on school supplies in July and August when they are significantly discounted in stores. They make quite inexpensive gifts, and also, extremely practical gifts.
2. Craft Store Gift Card
On the 2nd day of Christmas, a fun idea is to give a gift card to a local craft store. Your kids’ teachers can pick out something for decorating their own home during winter break, complete some of their own Christmas shopping, or find a fun crafting project for the classroom.
As a teacher, I loved reading aloud fantastic Christmas children’s books and then completing a craft that went with the books. A great place to inspire holiday creativity is a fun store like Michael’s or Hobby Lobby. It gets me into the Christmas spirit and inspires me with some cute ideas for bringing the season into my classroom.
3. Coupon Book
On the 3rd day of Christmas, consider making a coupon book for your favorite educator. You may need to speak with the administration of your school, but you could include coupons for things like “Bring in Your Favorite Lunch”, “Wear Jeans to School”, or “Cover Your Class.”
If you get other parents involved, parents could sign up for a time to read a book to the class while the teacher gets other things done. There is no better way to celebrate a great teacher than the gift of time!
Make a coupon for a surprise coffee. You can find out your teacher’s favorite coffee or tea and bring it in one morning as a morning pick me up. You would be surprise how much encouragement a couple of dollars spent on a coffee can bring to a teacher.
You can find great craft paper, crafting scissors, and stickers at the local dollar store to help create the coupon book. Students love to get involved making their teacher gifts, as well. Allow them to decorate the coupons or design the envelope in their own unique ways for this little daily gift.
Enjoy the free download below for some sample coupons for some holiday inspiration.
4. Christmas Tree
If your classroom teacher celebrates Christmas, a perfect gift is a small Christmas tree for the classroom during the holiday season. You could also send in some small ornaments to decorate the tree in unique ways. Or, the students could make different ornaments reflecting a subject being studied in the classroom.
A cute idea could be designing an ornament with each child’s favorite book cover and placing the tree in the class library. If the class is studying the solar system, kids could pick a favorite planet and design an ornament based on that. Each child could share their favorite holiday tradition and design a small ornament based on that tradition. A tree and ornaments is a great way to share together during Christmas time.
Teachers can use the Christmas tree to decorate the classroom for an end of the day Christmas party before the holiday break.
5. Coffee Mugs
On the 5th day of Christmas, add a personalized coffee mug to your teacher list of great gifts. I love researching what our teachers love and finding a mug that matches that interest. You can find plenty of choices reflecting all sorts of different themes.
My son’s teacher loved Harry Potter, so I paired Harry Potter coffee mugs with her favorite candy for a little treat. Last year, my daughter’s kindergarten teacher loved Disney, so we paired her Mickey mug with some little notebooks for the holidays.
You can also check your local stores for items with your school name. Many local purveyors may have coffee mugs, travel tumblers, or water lidded cups showing a little school spirit! Gift choices reflecting your teacher’s personality show that you care about the fun things they love.
6. Card Games
On the 6th day of Christmas, consider putting some card games on your teacher Christmas list. Card games are a great way to keep kids engaged, especially during individual or small group center time. It is hard work to keep kids engaged, and card games are a great way to do that.
Here are some of my favorite card games for the elementary classroom.
Tenzi is a great dice game (not cards) promoting rapid number recognition. My own kids, from ages 5-13, all still love this game so we keep it around the house. This one is perfect for math centers, as it has few rules and it is easy to understand. This is a perfect holiday gift for younger kids and older kids alike.
Skipbo is perfect for students, ages 7 and up. This sequencing game encourages students to create sequenced stacks with their cards. Skipbo works for groups of 2-6 players, so it is another great small group activity.
Blink is a favorite in our house, and it was always a bit hit in my classroom as well. This one is best for two players. Students work to match patterns, shapes, and colors quickly. Students from ages 7 and up will love this one! Add it to your life of great gift choices! The whole class will love it.
7. Sports-Related Gift
On the 7th day of Christmas, think about your teacher’s favorite sports team! It doesn’t have to be a super pricey item, but it just shows that you know what they love. Consider a throw blanket, a pillow, a mug, a koozy, or a bag with their favorite team’s logo on it. As a teacher, I love a good Tervis tumbler to keep my drinks cold all day long! (If she or he is not a sports fan, just find out their favorite hobby instead!)
8. Movie Tickets
On the 8th day of Christmas, who doesn’t love some movie tickets for a Christmas present? I do! I love this as a teacher gift idea because he or she can go anytime over the holiday break and relax! Run to the dollar store and grab a cute popcorn bucket, pair it with some microwave popcorn and say Merry Christmas.
9. Teacher Snacks
On the 9th day of Christmas, add teacher snacks to your list of gift ideas! Every teacher appreciates a basket of her favorite treats to enjoy during the hard work at long days of school. These are especially appreciated during teacher conference days or testing week towards the end of the year.
Some of my favorite teacher snacks include: granola bars, popcorn, dark chocolate, hard candy, and cheese crackers. See if your child’s school collects a list of teacher favorites and use that to compile a basket of favorite things!
10. Children’s Books
On the 10th day of Christmas, consider filling a gift bag with fantastic children’s books. Some of my favorite elementary authors include: Jan Brett, Mo Willems, Kevin Henkes, Mary Pope Osborne, and E. B. White. Consult your school’s librarian to see what suggestions she might have for your classroom teacher. This will surely get your child’s teacher into the Christmas spirit!
11. Gift Certificates
On the 11th day of Christmas, send in a gift certificate or gift card to your child’s teacher. Think about a favorite store in your town, a fantastic local shop, or a day at a local spa. It is a perfect Christmas gift for any teacher on your list!
12. Handwritten Notes
On the 12th day of Christmas, a handwritten note will speak to any teacher. I have received a lot of gifts over my time in the classroom, but truly my favorites are handwritten notes from students and their parents. Take the time to highlight what you most appreciate your child’s teacher and speak words of affirmation. Teaching is not an easy career path, but highly rewarding. Reading over these notes after a long day in the classroom will be an encouragement over the years to come.
I hope this post helps you as you plan for 12 days of Christmas gift ideas for teachers in your life. Be sure to sign up for my free newsletter with great monthly read alouds and keep reading for more ways to celebrate in your life!