When is Teacher Appreciation Week 2012?
|Year||Teacher Appreciation Week||Teacher Appreciation Day|
|2009||May 4 – May 8||Tuesday, May 5|
|2010||May 3 – May 7||Tuesday, May 4|
|2011||May 2 – May 6||Tuesday, May 3|
|2012||May 7 – May 11||Tuesday, May 8|
|2013||May 6 – May 10||Tuesday, May 7|
|2014||May 5 – May 9||Tuesday, May 6|
|2015||May 4 – May 8||Tuesday, May 5|
Teacher Appreciation Week is a week-long celebration observed during first full week in May. No one really knows when this set-aside week began. Some say it harks all the way back to World War II, while others note that Eleanor Roosevelt pushed for it in 1953.
Ultimately, in 1985, the National Parent Teacher Association (PTA) established Teacher Appreciation Week to take place during the first week in May. What really matters, though, is that the need to value our nation’s educators has a long history — and a long way to go.
How can I celebrate?
There is a range of choice for your teacher appreciation gift ideas. You can encourage your child to sing thank you songs for the teacher — the uniqueness of a personalized song will make your teacher feel appreciated and happy.
But perhaps nothing says “thank you” as well as a personalized teacher gift. Your child’s teacher will feel honored to have a custom gift in their name.
During Teacher Appreciation Week, parents and students organize activities to thank teachers for their hard work. The types of activities vary depending on the level of parent involvement at a given school.
Need to plan some creative Teacher Appreciation Day activities? Here are some ideas:
- Host a special breakfast or lunch for your school’s teachers and staff. If space allows, invite parents, school board members, the district superintendent, district personnel, and prominent community leaders to join you at the event in showing appreciation for teachers.
- Start a “teacher feature” on a school or library bulletin board. Each week or month, profile a different teacher. Include quotes by and about the teacher, as well as the teacher’s picture, background, hobbies, and education philosophy.
- Start a “Reading Week” to complement Teacher Appreciation Week. Encourage students to read books along the education theme, including stories about famous teachers in history. Learning more about teachers’ life, family and job will help them understand the significance of Teacher Appreciation Week.
- Try to support your teachers however you can. Offer training events, make yourself available to help as needed (i.e. copying papers, room set-up, getting equipment set up, etc.) or help brainstorm classroom ideas.
- Plant trees or flowers in public areas or on school grounds in honor of teachers.
- Organize a Teacher Appreciation Party with the entire class to let your teacher know your gratitude and appreciation.
Teacher Appreciation Gift Ideas
Prior to Teacher Appreciation Week, have school administrators ask teachers to fill out a survey regarding their favorite books, colors, flowers, restaurants, coffee shops, etc. Use that knowledge when giving gifts. For example, present each teacher with his or her favorite book, signed by each of his or her students or give each teacher a small bouquet of his or her favorite flower.
Here are some creative teacher appeciation gifts ideas for students, parents and schools:
Creative Teacher Gifts from Students
- Teacher Appreciation Card – Create a giant teacher thank you card to display in the school community. Place markers by the card so community members can add their own words of thanks. Parents of younger students can help their kids make footprint or handprint cards for their preschool teacher.
- Memory Book – Have your classmates write down their favorite memories with the teacher on sheets of colorful paper. Then gather the memory pages, add appreciation poems or quotes to them and punch holes along sides. Bind the pages with rings or pieces of ribbon.
- Bookmark – A homemade bookmark is an elegant option for a thank you gift. They’re simple and especially useful to teachers. Or opt for a book light — you never know when they’ll come in handy.
- Quote Ribbons – Have your classmates write down their favorite quotes on a piece of colorful ribbon. Use a fine-tipped marker and be sure to add your name and the year to the bottom of the ribbon. Tie the ribbons together at the top, spread them out in a pretty box and present them to the teacher. It’s a nice way of reminding them that each child will take away something important from the week.
- Handwritten thank-you poems – (Probably the most appreciated gift of all).
- Video messages – Make sure teachers hear the value of their work from the students themselves. Have students share thank you messages and wording with teachers past and present through notes, artwork, videos, stories, or other means.
- Letters – Write a teacher appreciation letter.
- Songs – Sing a teacher appreciation song.
- Redo the lounge – Give the teachers’ lounge a makeover-buy new furniture, reupholster old furniture, or give the walls a new coat of paint.
- Small gifts – Offer parents ideas for small tokens of appreciation, such as apples, bookmarks, homemade goodies or crafts, “World’s Greatest Teacher” mugs, or coffee shop gift cards to give to teachers at the beginning of Teacher Appreciation Week or each day of the week.
- Luncheon – Host a Teacher Luncheon for the teachers at no extra cost to them. Have parents prepare food (something easy, like sandwiches or wraps or soups or quiches) and decorate the lounge or have one of them host it at their home. Invite the teachers to come and enjoy a meal together just for fun (no agenda).
- Food – Send fruit baskets, gifts baskets with teas, coffees, nuts, cheese/crackers sets, popcorn tins, home-baked goodies, prepared ready-to-make mixes with recipes (hot cocoa mix, soup mix, cookie mixes, etc.) packaged in mason jars or zip-lock bags, etc.
- Coffee – Have parents drop by for a simple coffee reception for the teachers.
- Handmade gifts – Crafts such as the cross-stitch are very popular and elegant gifts teachers can use to decorate their living rooms.
- Gardening – Help them with gardening. Since teachers are too busy planning lessons, they often don’t have enough time to pay more attention to their gardens. Spend a few hours fixing their gardens and give them some of your own gardening knowledge. Who knows, maybe you can eve teach them a thing or two!
- Picnic – Plan a creative and funny picnic.
Teacher Appreciation Gifts for Schools/Educational Organizations
- Displays – Ask local businesses to each adopt a teacher for the week and display students’ drawings, cards, and stories about that teacher in a store window.
- Training – Offering training events, making ourselves available to help as needed (with copying, or room set-up, or getting equipment set up, etc.) or to brainstorm ideas, praying for them, etc.
- Advertisements – Take out an ad in the local newspaper to thank the teachers in your school or district.
- Certificates – Present certificates of appreciation to all teachers, as well as to substitute teachers, aides, and other support staff.
- Facebook Page – Create an event page on Facebook to spread the word about your Teacher Appreciation Week activities. Join the Thank-A-Teacher Facebook group to share ideas and photos with communities across the country, and encourage your community to join this forum for expressing their gratitude to teachers.
- Press Release – Send out a press release thanking the teachers at your school highlighting why teachers are so important to our children and advertising your teacher appreciation activities.
Teacher Appreciation Awards
Want to give your teacher something special this year for Teacher Appreciation Week? Perhaps nothing will honor a teacher more for their dedication than a special award given in their name. Here are just a few ways you can commemorate your teacher’s hard work through awarding gifts:
- Teacher Appreciation Award – A big “Thank You” and round of applause for a job well done, the Crystal Book makes a unique teacher award plaque to express your heartfelt appreciation.
- Teacher of the Year Award – The most frequently used teacher award program, “Teacher of the Year” awards honor best teachers for their dedication to teaching.
- Teacher Appreciation Plaque – With the star on top and colored music notes dancing, the Teacher Appreciation Plaque is an excellent teacher award idea for musicians and music teachers.
- Teaching Excellence Award – Teaching Excellence Award recognizes and rewards best teachers. The star accents make it a perfect choice for “Teacher of the Year Award”.
- Teacher Achievement Award – Teacher Achievement Award highlights and celebrates outstanding achievements of an educator, a popular teacher award idea for “Teacher of the Year” award.
- Best Teacher Award – Best Teacher Award recognizes and honors stars of the profession for going above and beyond the classroom making a difference in the student’s lives.
Have your own ideas for Teacher Appreciation Week 2012? Leave them in the comments!