Teacher Gift Ideas

Teacher Gift Ideas Question: “Just wondering how you handle teacher gift ideas.  At our school, parents are sort of expected to contribute to a to a joint gift for the teacher.  The suggested amount is about $15.  This gift is usually an American Express gift card. It is a little tricky navigating the social aspect of group gifts.  Do you have any frugal ideas about how to handle this?  Thanks.”

Answer: I suggest you bow out, gracefully, of the group gift.  If you have 3 kids, you’re out $45.  That is simply too much money.  It is nice to thank teachers, who work very hard teaching our kids, but families should be saving their money. What to say to these thoughtful, group gift organizers?  Thanks, but, you have your own traditions.  Then start a tradition.  Below are a few to get you started…

Here are a few teacher gift ideas

1.  Thank you note. You and your child can write a thank you letter.  Tuck in a gift card to a local coffee shop.  Coffee, tea, or hot chocolate are always welcomed gifts.

Teacher Gift Ideas 2.  Food item. Give something home-cooked by you.  Do you make jam?  Give a jar with a pretty ribbon tied around.  Gingham ribbon, of course.  I love to give granola.  My granola recipe is here.

Teacher Gift Ideas 3.  A plant or flower.  Give a basil plant.  Nothing says summer is here like a basil plant.  Your child’s teacher can plant it, cook with it or just enjoy the smell.  Trader Joe’s has them for  ~$3.50.  A potted flower, that can be enjoyed or planted in a garden is another nice gift.  Fresh and green, these are both sweet with a ribbon tied around.

When giving gifts, think about not adding to more stuff in life. There are plenty of cute teacher gifts at stores but when you’re at a garage sale/estate sale of a former teacher, you can always tell.  That’s where all the “you’re my favorite teacher” gifts end up!

What are your favorite teacher gift ideas?  Teachers, what gift do you like to receive?

Go Gingham related links:

Kid’s birthday party gifts that are budget friendly and very sweet
Frugal gift ideas for teachers – lovely and homemade
Frugal and easy gifts to give – very easy
Frugal and green wedding gifts – simple gifts with an upgrade element, too
Wrapping paper alternatives – old maps!

2 thoughts on “Teacher Gift Ideas

  1. Sara, as always, frugal, inspired and beautiful! We just gave potted plants from Trader Joe’s to our daughter’s preschool teachers and they went over very well. I think they were azaleas, but basil would probably be even better, since the teachers could use them to cook with. Plus, as you appear to have done in the photos above, I like to take off the crinkly paper that some stores put on the plants and add pretty fabric and a ribbon.

    Nicely done!


  2. If you make anything, be sure to clarify that the children did not help in the preparation of the baked goods. Otherwise, we teachers will pitch it right away. Cash is always best. I like the plant idea. Flowers die fast. Please no candles or mugs. Gift cards to Target or a gas station are the best. No photos of your child. Nothing that says “TEACHER” on it.


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