Buying gifts for teachers can be a tough call. Some teachers want gifts for the classroom and some don’t. Some like a glass of wine; some don’t. One thing we do know: almost to a one, they have plenty of coffee mugs. This gift list for teachers has a good mix of everything—except mugs.
It’s easy for kids to forget teachers are human, but as an adult, you need to remember that since they’re human, it’s a pretty good bet they love chocolate. This gift basket from Ghirardelli is loaded with premium chocolate that will make the cares of the classroom fade away.
If you know the teacher well, whether they’re a friend or they teach your children, you’ll have a good idea of what their rules are. This personalized poster print puts all the rules in one place so the kids can see them, with the teachers name written across the top.
Teachers at every level write, write, write. All day and sometimes long into the night. That’s what makes this teacher gift especially nice. It’s a deluxe pen from Pilot that writes so smoothly and easily, the revisions and notes will just flow right onto the page.
We couldn’t resist putting at least one apple on list of gifts for teachers—but it’s not a paperweight or a candy apple or a clever sculpture with a bite taken out of it. It’s a personalized word-cloud style print in the shape of an apple on heavy cardstock, ready for framing.
Every profession has its go-to sayings, and this notebook sums up a sentiment that all teachers know and feel almost every day: Keep Calm and Pretend It’s On the Lesson Plan. Because every teacher understands that no plan, no matter how good, survives first contact with the students.
The New Yorker is known for its witty columns, poignant stories, political satire, and most of all, its hilarious cartoons. This collection of The New Yorkers best teacher cartoons will keep any teacher in stitches for hours, and help them get perspective when the going gets tough.
For the nature loving, outdoorsy-type teacher who likes to do fun activities with the kids, this growth chart makes a unique and unexpected gift. It’s a six and a half foot tall, one foot wide replica of a ruler. No one else in the school will make measuring up so much fun.
This gift is specially designed for the retiring teacher or professor of English or Literature. It’s a book sculpture with the word “Retired” cut into the pages. The teacher will be able to take a piece of the classroom home at the end of that last day, with no papers to grade at all.
For any teacher at any level, there’s more to teaching than facts and figures. Teachers are there to show students how to be human beings, and that’s what the legendary Dr. Seuss means with this quote: all teacher are, in fact, teachers of all things.
This gift is meant for a student to give a special teacher who’s made an impact in their lives. At the end of the year when it’s time to say goodbye, this charming pendant will touch a teacher’s heart. She’ll keep it someplace special and never forget the kid who she helped to grow.
People that haven’t taught miss some really funny stuff in life. Teachers love to trade stories about the funny answers they get on tests—it’s how they pass the time in the teacher’s lounge. This book collects the funniest test answer fails and puts them all in one place.
Bonsai trees have a magical way of giving you a sense of calm and perspective when things in life are getting stressful. This is exactly what a teacher needs halfway through the day—a little dose of alm right there on the desktop. It’s Zen at-a-glance.
Almost every teacher on earth takes their lunch to school four days out of five, which means they’ll need a trusty lunch bag. This snazzy neoprene bag has plenty of room for a full day of snacks, lunches, and more snacks. It’s also got a special water bottle holder so they can stay hydrated.
The coolest teachers were always the ones with the electric pencil sharpeners up on their desks. Make the teacher in your life that cool teacher. This gift will not only make them beloved of their students, but also cut down on a lot of extra classroom noise.
If the ears of a teacher could speak, they’d tell volumes. Every teacher has stories to tell, because interesting things happen in every classroom around the world every day. This journal lets teachers record their impressions of the world while inspiring others to be the difference.
Not every teacher is eco-friendly and environmentally conscious, but most are. This reusable glass bottle helps the earth and comes with a silicone sleeve that’s completely BPA, PVC, and phthalate-free. The sleeve means it won’t roll away, and the glass makes is dishwasher safe.
Here’s another touch of Zen for the desktop: an all-natural Himalayan salt crystal candle holder. After the kids go away in the afternoon, the weary teacher can pop a tea light in this holder, which then emits a soothing glow and start to purify the surrounding air.
Notes home take on a whole new meaning when they come on personalized stationary. They have more gravitas, more emotion, and more—dare we say—personality when the teacher’s name and a special logo are printed across the top. This is a great gift for teachers at the elementary school level.
Teachers tend to begin their careers writing notes on every paper they grade, and finish their career stamping papers with encouraging messages. It’s not impersonal, it’s just more efficient. These self-inking recognition stamps will make things much easier the teacher who gets them.
Teachers change the world one day at a time, one student at a time, one class at a time, one teachable moment at a time. They know this and their students know this, but for some reason, when those students become adults, some of them forget. This clipboard reminds everyone what’s what.
This printer will make classroom project light-years easier. A teacher can take photos on a phone, print them up via the Bluetooth wireless connection, and hand them out to students so they can put them on posters or displays. A teacher can also take shots of classroom activities and send them home at the end of the day.
Ten transparent storage boxes with locking lids that I don’t have to pay for or beg off a colleague? Yes, please! Teachers are always looking for ways to get better organized in their classrooms, and these plastic shoe-box sized containers do the trick.
The kids will think the teacher is a little bit nuts when she closes her book on this hilarious bookmark and raises her eyebrows over the cover. And maybe they’ll think twice about acting up next time, too, when they see the fate that befell the poor kid at her hands.
What it do, playa? Run a pigeon to the homies and let’s roll deep! Teachers tend to be pretty hip, but you can’t blame them if they can’t keep up with every passing trend. They already kept up with phrases like bitchin, gnarly, and the bomb. Give them this book and they’ll be spittin’ hot fire in no time.
An ideal gift for a math teacher at any level. Elementary, middle, and high school teachers can keep this on their desk for kids to try to solve when they’re done with classwork. For college professors, this gift makes the perfect office conversation piece.
Even teachers who say they absolutely do not want classroom supplies as gifts will gladly accept a pack of Sharpies any day of the year. The pens are the go-to workhorse of teachers at all levels, from pre-k all the way through graduate school.
Touch of teacher Zen, part three: yoga. Teachers work hard all day, and sometimes stay past dinner for afternoon activities and lesson planning. They need an easy, portable, healthy way to de-stress at the end of the day, and for that, nothing beats yoga.
For the traditionalist. This golden bell evokes days gone by, when teachers wore starched, high neck collars and patrolled the front of the classroom like sentinels, and every move of the students was carefully controlled by the chiming of a bell. This is that bell, reborn in the 21st century.
Teachers send notes home all the time, even in the day of instant email communication. The thoughtful teachers send handwritten notes home on special cards—or they would if they had an endless supply. Give a teacher that supply, so they can reach out in the way they really want to.
This gift is for the awesome English Lit teacher in your life who gave taught you to trust your instincts, speak your mind, and explore the amazing world of books. Maybe this teacher even taught you to write, which gave you confidence across all other subjects—this gift is for that teacher.
And now for something practical: caffeine. If there’s a teacher out there who doesn’t drink at least two cups of coffee before lunch, we bet they’re drinking caffeinated soda. But seriously, this gourmet coffee sampler will make any lover of the dark, bitter brew very happy indeed.
When you get up every morning and you know there’s a classroom full of young minds waiting for you, counting on you to be there for them, it transforms you for life. It’s almost like having kids. This book is a collection of twenty four transformational stories from the front lines of teaching.
Kids always wonder where teachers get the humongous tote bags they all seem to have. Here’s the modern answer: from people like you, reading lists like this. You know your teacher friend has to lug books and papers home every day, and a tote like this is the best way to do it.
Teacher’s moment of Zen, part four: the Buddha. The Buddha is all about being in the moment. Not stressing about the past, not worrying about the future. We all know teachers need a whole lot of that in order to do what they do, day in and day out. Give them some peace. Give them a Buddha candle.
Along with all the papers and notebooks they have to take home, in the 21st century, teachers also need a safe and trusty way to take their laptop back and forth every day. This laptop bag is waterproof, shockproof, and comes with a shoulder strap when they want a messenger bag-type look.
The gentle trickle of water will soothe the nerves of the teachers and the students in the classroom, and help everyone do their assigned roles better. Or maybe the sound will just want to make everyone take more bathroom breaks. There’s one way to find out: give this to a teacher, and then ask.
Your selfless and dedicated teacher deserves every last little thing in this luxury spa basket. From the bath salts to the scented soaps, bath gel, and exfoliation scrub, the teacher can spend down-time taking care of personal needs. And chow down on the yummy cookies when they’re done.
It’s hard not to think of Laura Ingalls Wilder when we see a teacher’s nameplate like this. It conjure up images of the perfect little schoolhouse up on the hill, and the selfless and dedicated teachers who teach every grade and every subject. A simpler gift for teachers who long for a simpler time.
Let’s do as the kids say these days, and get real: this is probably the only gift on this list a teacher really wants. That’s why we saved it for last, because it is, in fact, the best gift on this…nope. We can’t. Teachers can’t play favorites and neither can we (but it’s the best gift on the list).
11 DIY Teacher Gifts
Get together with your elementary school kid and make this classic chalkboard pot as a beginning of the year gift. It’ll be fun for both of you and the teacher will really love it. All you’ll need is an earthenware flower pot, art supplies, and a couple of hours to make it happen.
Instead of anything school related at all, this year get take the time to make that special teacher something pretty. This braided bracelet is stylish and remarkably easy, considering how cool it looks. This gift is just right for the female teacher with a little bit of class (ha!).
When Christmas rolls around and you’re brainstorming things to give teacher, give this snazzy recipe book a try. It uses very basic materials you can either throw together at home or find anywhere, and won’t take more than a couple hours of your time.
5-4-3-2-1! School’s out for the Summer! Teachers will love this creative countdown clock they can display in their classroom. We thing starting after Spring Break is appropriate, because if we’re honest, that’s what everyone is thinking about for the last half of April and the entire month of May.
Send teacher off into summer time right with this cute homemade lemonade kit. It’s incredibly simple and easy. You’ll just need a lemon, sugar, a mason jar, and the downloadable/printable template to use as a label. It’s also a great idea if you have multiple teachers to give gifts to.
We’re not saying give them money and be done with it, but let’s face facts: teacher are not paid well enough! So we’re saying wrap it in a bow and a tag with a very clever line on it. The teacher is guaranteed to appreciate it, and it shows them you’re grateful for everything they do.
On the other end of summer, teachers need a little boost to get ready for the year ahead. You can get this handy survival kit together whether you’re the parent of a child heading back to school, or you have a good friend who’s a teacher gearing up for the year.
Some metaphors are so apt they come back year after year. This one will be around for teachers until the end of time, because it perfectly describes what they do: they plant seeds of knowledge which, if nurtured, grow forever. This DIY brings the metaphor to life.
It’s going to happen. They’re going to need pencils. No matter how many they bring, somehow, someone will always come up to the desk and ask. Set the teacher in your life up right with this cute and clever little pencil holder. They might not come back, but it doesn’t hurt to ask.
This DIY idea is adorable. It’s a jar full of pens with flowers on the end, so when the jar is full, there’s a pretty bouquet on the desk, and when the kids have all the pens, the teacher will know exactly where they are with a single glance. No more pens that wander off forever. Well, fewer, at least!
Bring some color and life to the teacher’s desk this year by making a vase from very simple materials: a coffee can, a package of colored pencils, and a thick rubber band. Follow the tutorial, then fill the vase with a floral bouquet and send it off to school.
(You may also like: 25 Fruit Gifts They Will Love)