In honor of this teacher appreciation week, I wanted to share my favorite gift of all time! I’ve been in education for over 10 years now, so I have received my fair share, and there’s one that always wins by a landslide!
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Related: The Best Gifts for Preschoolers
Like most teachers, I don’t really expect gifts and accolades for doing what I do. I teach because it’s a passion of mine, I think early childhood education is important, and because I genuinely enjoy it and have a knack for it. That’s not to say I don’t appreciate an acknowledgement of what I do, though . . . I’m only human! 🙂
I’ve received a variety of presents as a teacher – for holidays, teacher appreciation week, and end of the year gifts. There have been coffee mugs and chocolate to satisfy two of my vices, gift cards to make my life easier, and beautiful flowers to decorate my home and classroom (and that’s just to name a few). I can honestly say I have loved each and every gift my students and their families have given me. But those examples don’t even compare to the gift I cherish the most.
Despite the semi-dramatic build up, my favorite teacher gift isn’t anything expensive or over-the-top. It is a simple thank you! It can come in the form of a hand-written note from a parent, a colorful child-drawn picture, or just a heartfelt use of the words “thank you!” This gift, no matter how basic it might seem, absolutely means the world to me. I can state for a fact that I have every single thank you card and drawing I have ever received. They make me smile every time I see them. They’re also a great pick-me-up during those days when I feel like I wasn’t the best teacher.
There’s just something about an earnest “thank you” that touches my heart each and every time. They make me feel appreciated. They make me feel like my students’ families understand what I put into my job as a teacher. They make me feel validated. It’s a gift that any family can give – no matter the family’s income, home language, ethnicity, composition, etc. A note, a card, a child’s drawing, or a few simple words may seem small – but it’s those gifts that have the biggest impact on me as a teacher.
What are your thoughts when it comes to teacher gifts?
Tools for Teacher Organization
It is so important to continue working on our skills in order to be the best teachers for our students. And part of being able to be the best teacher we can is staying organized. In my experience, staying organized also helps keep me cool, calm, and collected throughout the school year and throughout each day.
So, I made a list of some really useful tools in staying organized both in the classroom and when it comes to the lesson planning and logistics of running a classroom. Check them out below.
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- Stacking file trays
- File folders
- Clip boards
- Sorting trays
- Nuts and bolts storage drawers
- Table Caddies
- Book bins
- Preschool lesson planning book
- Large desk planner
- Pocket charts
- Contact paper
- Classroom name plates
- Label maker
Keep in mind that this list is in no way extensive. Being organized looks different for each person. So, make sure that you have the tools on-hand that help keep you organized. Doing so will certainly reduce your level of stress each day and throughout the school year.
Done-for-You Preschool Resources
Planning meaningful lessons for students week after week, all while balancing other teaching responsibilities and a personal life, can be a daunting task. That’s where Preschool Teacher 101 comes in to save you time!
Preschool Teacher 101 is excited to share with you some amazing lesson plans, activity packs, and much more! We offer a wide variety of themes that are frequently used in preschool classrooms, as well as some less common (but super interesting) themes. Click on the images below to learn more about some of our products related to classroom management.
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Anna@The Measured Mom says
Agreed… those personal thank yous mean so much. I still think of those parents who took the time to send me a heartfelt note out of the blue when I was a single teacher. It was so encouraging! Now and then I think of sending them a note to tell them how much it meant to me, more than 10 years later.
Mary Catherine says
Thank you, Anna! They really do mean so much, and I’ve always been so moved when parents take that time to pen genuine notes to me. 🙂