Top 10 Teacher Appreciation Week Gift Ideas {Straight from the Source!}

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Teacher Appreciation Week is the first full week in May, which this year falls Monday, May 3 – Friday, May 7. Thinking about something to give your child’s teacher? Before you run to Pinterest to search for cute ideas, I asked a group of elementary school teachers what the best gift is that they ever received and they all said GIFT CARDS. Gift cards may make you feel like you are being lazy, but honestly, they are the BEST thing! 

Here are some suggestions of places to go for gift cards for teachers that will help them feel appreciated: 

  1. Target – Who does not love Target? Not only are they likely to find something for themselves, but there are school supplies, lots of educational puzzles and toys, and storage ideas for the classroom. According to a survey from Scholastic, some teachers spend more than $500 of their own money each year on items for the classroom. A gift card to Target may help offset some of the cost when it comes time to buy things. 
  2. Walmart – Sort of like Target, but better? Teachers can use Walmart Grocery to purchase groceries and supplies for their own family – and not even have to get out of the car to pick it up. 
  3. Pizza – Little Ceasers, Domino’s, Marcos, etc. – it really does not matter, but a gift card to a place that sells pizza is great for teachers. They can choose to use it for their own family or as a reward for their classroom.
  4. Office supplies – Office Depot, Staples = a wonderland for teachers. 
  5. Spa services – Teachers deserve a little pampering … consider a gift card to a place that offers massage, manicures, pedicures, etc.
  6. Amazon – Amazon has EVERYTHING. Books, office supplies, carts (teachers love carts and bags), food.
  7. Learning Express – Learning Express has the best educational toys. Teachers are always looking for ways to make learning fun and this is an awesome place to browse and pick up cool things for the classroom.
  8. Educational Wonderland – Like Learning Express, but geared towards teachers. 
  9. Bookstore – Books-A-Million, Barnes & Noble, and the like. All teachers need books for their classroom. A gift card to a bookstore will allow them to pick out what is appropriate and needed for their classroom. Or maybe they just want to read a romance novel over the summer. A gift card will allow your child’s teacher to pick what they want to read! 
  10. Starbucks – Many teachers are fueled by coffee. If your child’s teacher does not like coffee, think about a gift card to Chick-fil-A or Sonic instead! 

ALL teachers work hard and deserve to be recognized for what they do! Do not forget to include some of your child’s favorite special area teachers too! 

If you are a teacher, what are some of your favorite gifts? If you are a parent, what are some things you have done to celebrate the hard-working individuals in your child’s school?

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Valerie Byrd Fort was born in Florida, but when she was four years old, her family moved to the midlands and never looked back. She is mom to Katy (human) and to Lucky, Mozzy, and Penny (rescue dogs). She is married to Marty Fort, owner of the Lexington School of Music, Columbia Arts Academy, and Irmo Music Academy. She is an Instructor for the School of Library & Information Science at the University of South Carolina, where she teaches Children’s Literature to future classroom teachers and librarians. She is also Coordinator for Cocky's Reading Express, the University of South Carolina's literacy outreach program. Valerie is passionate about books, literacy, libraries, and reading aloud with children of ALL ages. She writes about books and other literacy related topics on her blog, Library Goddess. In her free time, Valerie enjoys reading, Barre3, going to Target and endless scrolling of social media  

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