calling all teachers what gifts do you love?

(217 Posts)
mam29 Sat 29-Jun-13 08:41:03

I wnat to do something for dd1s teachers and support staff but not sure what?

Dds old school was very showy with huge collections like 300quid of shopping vouchers, flowers, chocs and wine.

Was horrible.

Last few few years made some pressies.

or brought something small inexpensive xmas was nice notebook and plant.

I dont want to go ott. So any tips /ideas?

Also would be odd to give token gift to head? dont want her to think im bribing her.

Just new school really do extra mile where as old school dident so most unlike me would rather get it sorted early thinking some sort craft project might look on pinterest.

Roshbegosh Sat 29-Jun-13 08:45:54

Gift to head and whoever else is fine.
Wine is always nice or gift vouchers, nothing bathroomy as it's too personal and they may not like it. Chocs are very kind but fattening.

What do teachers really think of homemade edibles (made by parent, not snot-nosed brat)?

Nagoo Sat 29-Jun-13 08:55:17

I am married to one.

Home made things are ace, especially if he I can eat them.

He likes home made cards smile

Please dear god no mugs.

He gets through a bazillion post it notes, and gets excited by nice ones, but that might just be him smile

thegreylady Sat 29-Jun-13 08:57:01

You can't go wrong with vouchers. I always just bought a new book for class/school library. If you wat it for the heady individually an Amazon voucher would be perfect but best of all would be a letter of thanks from you. I have kept all such letters I received over 30+ years of teaching.

Umlauf Sat 29-Jun-13 09:00:13

I love home made things the best!! I have a lot of little friendship bracelets, have had sloe gin and limoncello as well, and peppermint creams. I also loved the Chanel mascara I got one year, but the home made stuff makes me smile the most!!!

Branleuse Sat 29-Jun-13 09:00:51

i usually bring them all bottles of wine

No wine please, I don't drink! Fresh flowers are lovely, but my favourite ever gift was homemade shortbread from a Scottish parent (I'm a v long way from Scotland) because it tasted divine!

As a parent and teacher the best that I have given or received are ...

smile A heartfelt message in a homemade card - this will always be Number One!

smile Canvas bag to carry marking home, personalised and decorated with fabric paint and pens. thecleverbaggers.co.uk/bags/reusable-cotton-shopping-bags and chose one with a gusset

smile Pens, stickers, funky post-it notes

smile Vouchers for Amazon or John Lewis if you're a school that does class collections.

wine Wine , if you KNOW they drink it.

smile Same goes for chocolate.

smile Costume jewellery / hair clips / scarves / etc of a type that you have SEEN them wear.

flowers biscuit Flowers and homemade edibles are wonderful and the effort and thought is always appreciated. Trouble is - imagine if everyone in the class gives cupcakes... how will they get eaten before they go off? Does any teacher have 30 vases? A big box of something for the staffroom well before the end of term so that they get scoffed without wastage is good.

sad Please avoid lotions, shower gels, etc as you cannot know what they like or might be allergic to. Same goes for scented candles. Please no more mugs. Please no ornaments.

KansasCityOctopus Sat 29-Jun-13 09:35:17

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Arisbottle Sat 29-Jun-13 09:38:10

A card saying thankyou.

MadeOfStarDust Sat 29-Jun-13 09:57:35

homemade crumbly condensed milk fudge - with loads extra for the staff room!! DD1 teacher liked it sooo much she raved about it last year to everyone....

scaevola Sat 29-Jun-13 10:02:04

There was an article in TES a few years ago about worst EOY presents. The one that stuck in my mind was an offering from a colourful family of a bottle of whisky with the security tag still on!

Try letting DC loose in a pound shop and see what they choose?

78bunion Sat 29-Jun-13 10:17:59

They were banned at my daughter's school which I think was a great idea. I don't give them ever.

lollypopsicle Sat 29-Jun-13 10:27:15

One if the sweetest things I got was box painted and decorated by a child. It was about 3 yrs ago and still have it. The toiletries in the box were given away as I'm a it fussy about what products I use on my skin.

I am always happy with a bottle of wine or flowers.

I get waaaay too much chocolate and give a lot of it away. I also give away toiletries and often jewellery as it is often not my style.

However, I am always grateful for the thought. I don't think anyone should feel like they need to buy me something for doing my job. I really would be happy and touched to receive a thank you note or even a verbal 'thank you'.

Elibean Sat 29-Jun-13 10:40:57

We always give small gift to head and deputy at end of year - dds love them, and enjoy giving extra silly gifts to Head who has a gsh.

We tend to do class gifts now, at the end of the year, but my kids like making cards/bookmarks etc for their favourite teachers and TAs too.

HesterShaw Sat 29-Jun-13 10:45:21

Wine and chocolate grin

Cards children have made themselves are always very touching.

Tommy Sat 29-Jun-13 10:46:28

I tend to give homemade cakes or biscuits etc to the whole staff (or year group) at the beginning of the last week so they have all week to eat them

at Christmas I give wine (I know all the teachers grin)

Wellthen Sat 29-Jun-13 10:54:26

Cards from the parent saying thank you and some specifics that they or the child have really appreciated are definitely my best - make me want to cry. But I spose you have to actually quite like your child's teacher to do this!

Cards or pictures from the child, especially the little ones.

Homemade cakes I'm always happy with but I have some colleagues who are a bit neat freaky IMHO and always throw away anything made by children.

Chocolates are always good, agree with the poster who said presents for the staff room. Those families are always remembered!

I love flowers but its a tricky one as some teachers go away on the first day and more than 2 bunches is a bit ridiculous. A plant might be better.

Shop bought 'thank you teacher' gifts are the worst I'm afraid. They don't feel personal and are usually tat. To be honest I would ask your kids. If they/you don't feel strongly about buying a gift then don't bother.

zirca Sat 29-Jun-13 10:54:45

Home-made card is nice, with a message written by the child and perhaps one added by the parent. Food-wise, make sure the teacher can eat it and isn't on a diet/has an allergy etc. Same with wine.

Funky post-it notes would be amazing, and pens are always useful. Nice notebook ditto, ginormous eraser that can't be lost, that sort of thing. Most teacher like stationery.

NeoMaxiZoomDweebie Sat 29-Jun-13 11:01:30

Is a plant a nice idea? Do teachers like those? What about some stamps....the kind with "Well done" or even personalised ones like "Mrs Jones says good work!" ??

toomuchicecream Sat 29-Jun-13 11:08:42

My best ever presents include:

Thank you letter from a parent outlining exactly why I'd made such a difference to her child - very useful for quoting in subsequent job applications!! Also cards with similar messages from parents and children.

Fantastic squishy chocolate mousse cake made by year 6 boy.

Small cross stitch with an apple on it & thank you, made by a year 6 girl from a v impoverished background who'd got her nan to help her make it.

This year I've already had a parent offering to spend £100 (!) on resources for my classroom for next year. I've probably had more fun spending that money than any vouchers I've had in the past, and I'll be getting the benefit of the things I've bought for years to come. In fact, I've gently floated the idea past a parent/TA that if she's around when gifts are being discussed, she might like to suggest that to others (NOT that I'm expecting anything).

AntlersInAllOfMyDecorating Sat 29-Jun-13 11:08:46

An email/ card saying thank you - did my teaching make a difference? did your child love a subject?

In my four years of teaching - I have received two emails of thanks from a parent and from a pupil, and a card from my tutor. I treasure them as an affirmation that somewhere I have helped someone and it's meant something. That is better than any box of chocolates or "best teacher mug!"

Jaynebxl Sat 29-Jun-13 11:08:56

Wine is good... Can be drunk or given away. To be honest I never liked the homemade food idea as I never quite trusted it! And actually I used to give lots of the presents away which cut my gift buying bill at Christmas so that was nice! blush

exoticfruits Sat 29-Jun-13 11:09:00

Cards made and written by the child.
Nothing embarrassingly expensive.

NeoMaxiZoomDweebie

Is a plant a nice idea? Do teachers like those? What about some stamps....the kind with "Well done" or even personalised ones like "Mrs Jones says good work!" ??

Not everyone is a plant person, but a personalised stamp is a superb idea! smile

exoticfruits Sat 29-Jun-13 11:14:21

If you get a plant one that could go out on a patio would be safer.

NeoMaxiZoomDweebie Sat 29-Jun-13 11:23:43

Thanks ReadytoOrderSir I thought it might be cute and usable! smile

I love giving jewellery but that rarely meets with approval on here (I do M&S stuff with gift receipts with a note sayj g please exchange for wine or chocs if not to your taste). Lovely stationery is nice for women I think (Paperchase sale on at the mo). I need a very special present for a very special teacher at the moment and am completely stumped.

mam29 Sat 29-Jun-13 12:56:26

Thanks everyone some fab tips there

god no more mugs!
A teacher who does not drink?

dd actually on teacher no 3 year 2

partly because we moved and last one left at xmas.

so teacher no 3 longest and shes liked her.

but she has has 2other teachers

just for re and pe so maybe token something for them.

but has had 3tas help out in class.

school rceptionist definatly deserves a pressie and no idea what to get head as dont know here very well.

lollypop man was chufed with his 31 box chocs at xmas.

we never went all out at last school i was only one who did homemade pressies for year teacher whilst other parents did £300 vouchers she was nice woman but she dident go extra mile or make huge diffrence but dd massivly improved and happy in new school so wanted to say thanks.

so far thinking tote bag painted.
plant
homemade stuff .

like fact new schools less showy.

her current teacher always wearing scarfs did notice that.

shes fairly newly qualified always fisrt there in class at 8am and last to leave at 4.30-5. shes really enthusiastic.

Periwinkle007 Sat 29-Jun-13 15:07:38

my daughters have drawn pictures of their teachers on little canvases. the preschool have put my youngest daughter's ones up on the wall as there is one for each member of staff.

If the teacher is in school at 8am - 5pm, she would be one of the last in and the first to leave in my school! I'm normally 7.45 - 5.45 but there are others in from about 7.15. Though I will admit to spending time on Mumsnet before I leave to walk home sometimes

Jaynebxl Sat 29-Jun-13 15:26:27

Unless you've had a lot of contact with the head I wouldn't buy a present for them. Or the PE and RE teachers. Or the receptionist unless again you've had a lot of contact and she has had to sort you out a lot!

stargirl1701 Sat 29-Jun-13 15:27:19

Wine grin
Something home made (a framed drawing is nice)
Nice pens, pencils, notebooks, etc
Percy Pigs - that's just me grin
A plant grown by the child
A gift to use with next class - game, puzzle, etc.
Post its - cute, funky ones

But, it's not needed. I don't teach for gifts - I teach because I love teaching.

Moleyjay Sat 29-Jun-13 15:28:23

I love receiving really nice quality pens - fine liners- for marking. I spend a lot of time using pens and a nice pie makes me happy!!

stargirl1701 Sat 29-Jun-13 15:29:11

Best gift ever was a letter written by the parent to the HT outlining what a difference I had made in their child's life. I framed it.

Total ego boost and boast grin

I think the decorated bag ideas is great but I'd echo those saying a letter of thanks with some details of what the teacher has done that was so great! this really is the best of all especially if sent to headteacher!

spanieleyes Sat 29-Jun-13 20:10:23

Stationary!
Most teachers I know are obsessed with stationary, we love pens ( I have around 10 different green ones to pick and choose from!) highlighters, post its, almost anything ( I second the vote for huge erasers!!) Stickers are another good idea, I must spend a fortune on my own so it would be nice if someone else did!
Oh and pencil pots
and pencil sharpeners, I would kill for an electric one!

( Rushes off to search Amazon for giant erasersgrin

spanieleyes Sat 29-Jun-13 20:20:46

and a spell checker would be good too blush

mam29 Sat 29-Jun-13 20:56:42

Thanks the receptionist /school admin is one woman super woman otherwise known as school mummy. shes showed daughter around as head ident have the time, made us feel welcome rang me any issues, deals with all the ill kids just made moving so much easier I never forget anything she keeps me posted and phones
She is the best alwways happy and freindly no matter what time see her.

The lollipop man crosses us daily all weathers with a smile and a chat.

had very little to do with pe and re teacher.

as for teacher no 3 since jan dd1 likes her.
compared to last school she seems hardworking.
guess will ahve to see when school report how shes done but she informs me daughters improved and talks highly of her.

The 3 tas

one has given dd additional help as she moved a sshe was behind spo she needs something.

The other 2 gave daughter prsents at christmas and easter and 1 helped run after school libary club for free which daughter enjoed.,
really si hard as small village school feel like little familiy.

Not had much top do with head other tahn when we joined and few hio in playground.

but she inspres me with conidence and daughter loves her.

I relived its not showy and huge competition.

I was touched how much xmas presenets were appreciated and like i said was quite anti teachers gifts in old school.

seen a few things on pinterst going to have a go that wont cost the earth.
a
Always handy to hear from teachers.

just pout interest whats been

funniest
oddest
weird gift ever got?

Frikadellen Sat 29-Jun-13 20:57:31

I go to Costa Coffee and buy them each a £5 gift voucher. I have done so for 2 years now and each time I get told OMG I love this.. even if you dont drink coffee usually you can find something in there you like.

mam29 Sat 29-Jun-13 20:57:45

ps one xmas made jaimie oliver chocolates saw on his programme and year 1 teacher looked bit shocked not sure if she liked that or the xmas cookies?

Schmedz Sat 29-Jun-13 22:03:54

Best gifts I have ever received are nice bottles of champagne, vouchers for a department store, live plants ( that always remind me if the student who gave it to me, even many years later), and the very best are personal gifts chosen because the student knows I like that particular thing.
One child made a cake which was decorated with lots of things to do with the subject I teach...very lovely and unexpected.
Handwritten notes are ALWAYS appreciated if they are done from the heart and not out of a sense of duty smile
Best gifts colleagues abroad have received are iPhones, iPads, designer jewellery, exclusive tickets to international artists' concerts...I kid you not!!!
Agree...no mugs, chocolates or 'smellies' which unfortunately cannot always be used by the recipient.
However, any gift given from the heart means a great deal (even if you can't always use it, or don't even particularly like it!). It amazes me that people even think to give anything at all, as I certainly don't expect anything...gifts are a real bonus and appreciated.

ninah Sat 29-Jun-13 22:04:48

alcohol. Or cash

Catmint Sat 29-Jun-13 22:36:39

Dd y1 began to learn a bit of sewing this year. So today she painstakingly sewed together and stuffed a felt heart and decorated with buttons ready to give to class teacher.

All the others will get biscuits for the staff room.

Catmint that will be treasured!

Fuzzymum1 Sat 29-Jun-13 23:26:45

I plan to get DS to draw/colour a thank you picture which I will then scan and transfer onto a simple white plant pot (one for the teacher, one for the TA). In the pot will be a spider plant from a bigger one DS and I have been growing together. Simple, inexpensive but personal. I plan to include a card for the teacher with our thanks for everything she has done this year - she's an amazing teacher who has suited DS so well and I'm so happy he will be taught by her again next year.

Noggie Sat 29-Jun-13 23:38:25

I bought ceramic tiles from baker Ross and got DDs to draw on them with porcelain pens- they wrote sweet messages of thanks with hearts and flowers and portraits of their teachers! Baked them in oven so can have hot coffee cups placed on them etc quite pleased with my thank yous this year!
As a teacher I got a summer beach towel once which I loved grin

littlelz Sun 30-Jun-13 12:58:24

just wonder how much gift voucher did you give to the teachers. I am planning to give DD's teachers Amazon gift voucher.

Schmedz Sun 30-Jun-13 17:12:49

Teachers at our school often receive vouchers to which most(if not all of the class families contribute). Usually around £100. Extremely generous IMHO!

MissM Sun 30-Jun-13 21:49:26

DH is a teacher and wine always goes down well! He also uses a bowl and mug that a child made him with a picture of him in his team's kit. He loves it! I agree with others that a thank you message is the most valuable though - he works bloody hard and it helps him realise that it's not gone unnoticed!

Pyrrah Mon 01-Jul-13 12:27:44

Can anyone clarify... I was told that any gift over £10 has to be declared by the teacher and so to keep gifts under that price?

For Xmas, I managed to get a half-price deal on really good champagne so they each got a bottle of that. I reckoned that if they didn't drink it themselves they could always re-gift it.

Was shocked at how much I got thanked by them the next term. Considering that a babysitter round here is almost £10 and hour, a measly bottle of champagne for putting up with DD for an entire term seemed positively cheap to me!

Tiggles Mon 01-Jul-13 12:38:29

Most schools will have a bribery policy. At the university I work at, I have to declare if anyone gives a gift of over £10 in value.

Periwinkle007 Mon 01-Jul-13 19:33:54

What if the class parents do a collection though to give vouchers? does that have to be declared as it isn't a gift from one individual so technically even if it was £30 it could be 10 gifts of £3 each

stargirl1701 Mon 01-Jul-13 19:55:27

Any gift over £25 must be reported to the HT, LEA & HMRC. The teacher will either not be allowed to accept it or will have to pay tax on the gift.

Big crackdown at the moment. We got emails before the end of term (Scotland).

Periwinkle007 Mon 01-Jul-13 20:10:47

ok I will ask at the office tomorrow then what the rules are at our school and make sure we don't go over whatever the amount is. If it is £10 then we will just get 3 different gifts presented by 3 different groups of parents.

thanks

HappyAsEyeAm Mon 01-Jul-13 20:31:31

Thanks for the inspiration. DS finishes reception in two weeks' time and his teacher has been wonderful. Have ordered a self inking stamp which says 'Mrs X says fantastic work'.

I love it! Hope she is as pleased smile

Periwinkle007 Mon 01-Jul-13 20:34:17

ooh I like the sound of that stamp. can I ask where you got it from?

BabiesAreLikeBuses Mon 01-Jul-13 20:51:59

Haven't heard anything about declaring gifts before, mind you i work for a small la generally ten years behind

Agree to personal card or letter. One child wrote me a poem last year, lovely.

Worst i had was half used mascara clearly nicked from mum's make up bag. It's the thought that counts?

stargirl1701 Mon 01-Jul-13 20:54:08

This is the first year in 15 years of teaching I heard about it.

Periwinkle007 Mon 01-Jul-13 20:57:27

I knew there were some rules about what had to be declared but I gather that last year a few classes parents did collections and noone commented when I mentioned it. We always had rules in my previous jobs so I assumed the same applied.

Last time this came up the conclusion was that the limits apply per child/family - so a £100 collection from twenty children doesn't trigger a £25 limit, but a £26 bottle of champagne from one family does.

Phantomteadrinker Mon 01-Jul-13 23:02:41

Just ordered our personalised stamp from eBay. 'Miss x thinks you're a star' perfect! Thanks for the tip grin

Periwinkle007 Tue 02-Jul-13 10:37:42

ah ok thanks Horry - I have emailed the office just asking for clarification.
sounds good phantom

HappyAsEyeAm Tue 02-Jul-13 11:18:17

I ordered the personalised stamp from ebay. £10.49 including postage. You can choose your colour, wording and picture.

Periwinkle007 Tue 02-Jul-13 11:46:03

thanks Happy - I have just looked it up, and found some stickers as well. amazing how much you can get personalised now isn't it?

HappyAsEyeAm Tue 02-Jul-13 11:49:23

I now - I am such a fan of personalised things. You could never get anything with my name on when I was a kid, so I am probably making up for that now as I buy loads! I hope DS' teacher likes the stamp. Its not like she can regift it if she doesn't! I wouldn't ever have thought of it if it wasn't for this thread thanks

MadeOfStarDust Tue 02-Jul-13 11:50:00

the gifts should fall under the same tax rules as "tips" really.... but they don't yet

Nagoo Tue 02-Jul-13 13:32:07

I got some stickers, great idea thank you.

Have just come across an idea of what NOT to do please ... www.myfamilyclub.co.uk/shopping/savvy-shopping/5-cheap-but-cheerful-end-of-term-gifts-for-teachers-11839
Number 2 is to give the teacher a photo of your child, in a decorated frame. I'm sorry but, even if your child was a perfect angel and the brightest of the bright, I can't imagine me wanting to keep a framed photo of them. I've got the whole class pic. That'll suit me just fine thank you.

HappyAsEyeAm Fri 05-Jul-13 13:20:42

Got my stamp today. Very fast turn around! I am going to give it with some gel pens, so I need to buy a nice box or bag. The box the stamp came in was squished and I would like it to be better presented. Otherwise very happy!

mixedmamameansbusiness Fri 05-Jul-13 14:40:55

We are contributing to the collection of DS1 teacher who was great but not more so than anyone else. DS1 loved him so will write a card.

DS2 teacher was just incredible and so was the TA and I will be taking in a big box of something lovely for the staff room for both classes and DS2 teacher is into music and plays the guitar so is getting a guitar pick which we can inscribe, he may never use it but we really thought hard about it and I hope he will see that.

All will get a letter from me outlining why I think they are great and DS2 team will get a letter to the Head - I am that impressed ( and I am generally impressed with the school anyway )

Just sharing an idea that was posted on a similar thread ... these bags were recommended by another teacher and I've just ordered some for my TAs :-)

www.thegoodbagco.com/collections/work-hobbies/teachers

www.thegoodbagco.com/collections/work-hobbies/teaching-assistants

Ooh I'd like the TA one if it didn't have that cringey spelling correction on it.

Hmm, there must be other sites with similar ... <Googles> ... if nothing else it would be a nice way to present the homemade edibles.

BadRoly Fri 05-Jul-13 19:30:42

Having read through, can I ask if a book token for each child's class rather than for the teacher would be a good idea please? So that the teacher/TA can choose books for their classroom/the library.

I have in the past made a tray bake cake for the staff room with a card thanking everyone who is involved in helping my dc at school which seemed to go down well.

Book token or books would be lovely thank you :-). I know of several families who do that.

We had homemade scones with clotted cream and homemade jam in our staffroom today from one family.

HorryIsUpduffed

Could decorate with your own design or message? thecleverbaggers.co.uk/bags/reusable-cotton-shopping-bags
I've used many of these bags in the past and they last for years. Go for one of the gusseted ones and get wild with the fabric paints, or iron-on printer transfer paper.

Great tip!

lilackaty Fri 05-Jul-13 21:52:08

As others have said it is the cards that are the best, when the parent has written a meaningful message; those are my favourite presents. I also love anything that shows the gift giver has put some thought into it. For example, today I got a beautiful mauve scarf. I love purple & I wear scarves a lot. Once I got a set of nail varnishes because the child I taught had told her mum that I always wear nail varinish. I often get mugs because I drink loads of tea.

Generally - chocolates, smellies, wine & candles are good though I think.

Dancingqueen17 Fri 05-Jul-13 23:14:29

Today I received John Lewis vouchers, a scarf, wine and posh hotel chocolate set all very much appreciated but none quite as much as the accompanying cards with personal messages.

zingally Sat 06-Jul-13 16:48:32

Shop bought 'thank you teacher' gifts are the worst I'm afraid. They don't feel personal and are usually tat. To be honest I would ask your kids. If they/you don't feel strongly about buying a gift then don't bother.

^ Absolutely this. Keyrings, teddies, photo-frames, anything of the "best teacher ever!" variety generally get binned or charity-shopped within the week. Mugs are also quietly donated to the staffroom mug collection.

The things I've treasured were the letters/cards with messages of thanks inside. I've kept them from my very first year in teaching.
Bunches of flowers, or a plant are very nice as well.

2 of the sweetest presents I ever got were a Wispa chocolate bar from a kid, who'd obviously listened when I'd told them my favourite chocolate months previously! And the grandpa who did volunteer reading in my class, who slipped a £20 note in my hand and told me to "buy myself something nice". He wrote me the sweetest card as well.

exoticfruits Sat 06-Jul-13 16:55:00

Yes- avoid anything with teacher written on it and cards produced for teachers.

sayithowitis Sat 06-Jul-13 20:50:56

I am not a teacher, but am a TA. I always consider myself extremely fortunate if I am given a gift at the end of the year. I do not drink and have so many bottles of wine here that I could probably give Threshers a run for their money. And that's after giving many, many of them away! I quite like some of the smaller candles but I agree about mugs! Our staffroom cupboard is already full to overflowing with them! My favourite gifts are the ones clearly chosen by the children - one gave me a bag of about 50 penny sweets once and proceeded to tell me they were all his favourites. We shared them! My ultimate favourite is always the card. Homemade is lovely, especially when the child or parent has written a thoughtful message. I have kept every card I have been given and love to re-read them now and again. Oh, and I was once given a wonderful set of colouring pencils, really good quality, which I still use even now.

Getting a present isn't the reason I do my job and a heartfelt thank you, verbal or in a card or note, really is enough.

Ok, judge away

<<braces self>>

(bags and wine carrier all made by me, bags contain fudge and are in addition to class present, wine/carrier is sole present as there is no class present)

I like, stealthsquiggle!

We're giving the teachers a homemade card and a jar of fruit from our garden (it's a good year for fruit). DCs will decorate each jar with glass pens.
Last year I gave them a decorated jar of nice coffee each.

Theselittlelightsofmine Mon 08-Jul-13 09:50:22

What do you buy a head teacher?

I'm stuck for ideas?

I have in the past done the same for the head as for the class teacher, but not this year because I am fed up with her inability to think things through DD didn't ask. We do Christmas cakes for more teachers - generally including the head, and DS picks his favourite subject teachers.

Theselittlelightsofmine Mon 08-Jul-13 10:08:33

Might just bake something, cookies or biscuits or something?

What kind of biscuits or cookies?

Theselittlelightsofmine Mon 08-Jul-13 10:08:52

Or I can do mini scones?

Kendodd Mon 08-Jul-13 10:30:53

I tend to just give one card for all the staff in the school, including office and support staff with the biggest box of chocs I can find for them all to share about two weeks before the end of term.

My children all had a really wonderful reception teacher, brilliant beyond words, I nominated her for this www.teachingawards.com/home She deserved it. I also emailed the LEA to tell them how good she was. If your child's teacher was really good maybe you could consider that?

As an aside, one thing my children's school did that just appalled me, a teacher was leaving so they set up a collection for him if anyone wanted to donate (fine) but them we were bombarded with emails, texts, letters telling us and updating us about the collection. They even listed his collection on parent pay (cue another letter/text/email telling us about it). I didn't donate and wish I'd complained.

Theas18 Mon 08-Jul-13 10:39:08

DH teaches.

Home made pressies/cards are fantastic. We eat the home made stuff honest! After all he's taught these kids for a year. He knows who washes their hands and who doesn't ( and those who don't are unlikely to bring gifts TBH!) . A little message written by the child is treasured.

Otherwise wine is great. Chocs less so but family appreciate them...

Dh can spot an unthinking poundland mug a mile off. Better nothing than this really .

Flowers not good ( a male teacher doesn't get flowers fortunately) as many teachers go away soon after the end of term.

Best card ever- child with english as 2nd language- almost no english at the start of the year. Drew a fab card . Wrote in it " Dear Mr X So sorry you are living" . We knew what he meant!

(spelling list for next term LEAVING!)

Theas18 Mon 08-Jul-13 10:39:50

stealthsquiggle they are lovely!

Thea So sorry you are living I love it!

FriskyHenderson Mon 08-Jul-13 10:52:05

Theas DS once wrote in his TA's card "good luck being a proper teacher next year" - TA was leaving to do a PGCE <whoops>

sheridand Mon 08-Jul-13 18:58:35

Best present ever: letter from a student saying how i'd improved her learning, handwritten, and also photocopied and sent to the Head. It had lovehearts on it, lots of lovely reasons, and some haribo in the envelope. I still have it, 12 years down the line, as it's the most thoughtful gift i've ever received. Any teacher loves something personal.

hhdavies Fri 12-Jul-13 00:15:59

I've taken a gamble and bought nice leaf tea that came with its own (nice!) strainer. I figured most teachers must drink tea, or if not they can re-gift it?

Wishing I'd gone with book tokens now though. Really wouldn't mind if they used them for themselves or for the class. If the tea is a really bad idea, I'm sure I can use it for rellies at Christmas and go for boooks/toys/stickers instead! Opinions please!

Jaynebxl Fri 12-Jul-13 06:50:48

I think tea is a lovely idea. Just have a slight doubt about leaf tea cos personally I find it too much faff, but the nice strainer probably makes up for that. Is it in a nice tin?

blue2 Fri 12-Jul-13 07:15:15

I used to make jams and chutneys for DS's teachers. They would always say how much they loved it, and would approach me the following term with a clean jam jar and a slightly pleading look in their eyes....

"Same again at the end of this term??" I'd say!!

madeit Fri 12-Jul-13 07:35:50

love getting a bottle of wine, photo frames, book voucher

missbopeep Fri 12-Jul-13 08:28:42

I'd be wary of eating anything homemade as ' you just never know'....sorry.

exoticfruits Fri 12-Jul-13 08:47:56

It depends which child gives it too you, missbopeep!

AbbyR1973 Fri 12-Jul-13 10:52:10

Ok tell me if this is ok... I wanted to get DS1's absolutely amazing year R teachers a nice present but not embarrassingly high value: I have gone for a bag of goodies approach. It will have a small "pip studio" ceramic bowl with a robin on it, some mini hotel chocolate bars, Cath Kidston hand cream and lip balm and some flower seeds (maybe poppies for WWi next year or forget-me-nots.) I will get DS to write a thank you letter.

hhdavies Fri 12-Jul-13 11:32:05

Jaynebxl I think tea is a lovely idea ... Is it in a nice tin?

No, unfortunately it's not in a tin, but the package is quite nice. Nice tins next year, doesn't everybody like a nice tin? (or is that just me...)

Glad it's not the worst idea I ever had though.

sydenhamhiller Fri 12-Jul-13 11:37:28

Interesting thread, thanks OP!

Kendodd, hope you don't mind me asking about something, just interested.

We've got a long-standing Head leaving, and I've arranged a collection for him, just sent a flyer for book bags saying HT leaving, we'd like to get a gift to show our appreciation, any donations gratefully received. I feel really nervous now - we didn't think anyone would mind... Was it the idea of a collection, or more the bombarding that bothered you. <Contemplates hitting the gin at 11.34...>

We really didn't want anyone to feel it was coming from the school, or expected, so the note had a very light touch - but I can see how some people might feel a bit harassed...

Iwaswatchingthat Fri 12-Jul-13 11:43:58

Lottery ticket with a good luck wish.

giddywithglee Fri 12-Jul-13 12:17:29

My DH teaches, so I'm approaching this from the long-suffering wife who has to find homes for all the tat he comes home with (sorry, folks!).

Homemade is great as long as it is good - we've got loads of slightly weird things made by children that it feels mean to throw out but that is crap (again, sorry!).. Bear in mind many teachers have children of their own so already have all the things they come home from school having made! However, he has come home with handmade candles which were beautiful.

Personally, I really appreciate the wine! But actually plants are fab, homemade jams and chutneys, my DH has a sweet tooth so sweets.

And I agree - avoid anything with 'teacher' on it because those things go to the back of the cupboard!

I LOVE the lottery ticket idea, my DH would probably think that was his best present ever!

BardOfBarking Fri 12-Jul-13 12:47:13

I love it when I am bought a ceramic mug with a lid. They are the only kind of cups we are allowed to have in the classroom, even before/after school and they are like gold dust in our staffroom.

I have taught for .... forever! and still have every single letter written to me by children and/or parents. It has always been really special when parents have followed that up with a note to The Head saying that I had been amazing grin

mummamagic Fri 12-Jul-13 13:38:15

Recipe please??

mummamagic Fri 12-Jul-13 13:40:52

Oh, whoops! Thought my reply requesting recipe would appear directly under the one I was relying to... the one about homemade, crumbly condensed-milk fudge.

wherearemysocka Fri 12-Jul-13 13:55:16

I think anything personal is nice - something your child remembers the teacher saying they liked or something that reminds your child of a fun lesson they had or a topic that interested them. I was so chuffed to get a card in German (I'm a secondary teacher) from some of my year eleven students which included a grammar point I'd been on and on about for the two years I had them!

That said, anything edible is great ;-) - but I agree with all of those who have said the thought means much more than the expense.

Lucielou123 Fri 12-Jul-13 14:21:20

A card with a genuine message of thanks always went down well with me. I was always grateful for any gift but the things that I enjoyed receiving the most were the handmade things, a small stocking at Christmas with some pens and pencils inside and a picture frame that one of my class had decorated with shells she had collected on holiday to make it for me. I still have it in my bathroom nearly 3 years later!

Lucielou123 Fri 12-Jul-13 14:27:53

I also got a fancy jar of olives once... we had been learning about where our food comes from before Christmas and my year 1 class had tasted foods from lots of different countries - I had mentioned that I loved olives as we were tasting them and this one boy kept that memory until the July. So sweet and thoughtful!! A personal touch is always appreciated.

badfaketan Fri 12-Jul-13 15:00:14

Reading this for inspiration.
Want to get something for DS pre-school teacher and on any one day there is usually a teaching assistant,ESL assistant and a student as well.
So need to get 4/5 small things.
DS likes Percy Pigs.Would 5 bags of those be ok,or 5 small 6 choc Hotel du Chocolat packs?

101handbags Fri 12-Jul-13 15:37:44

I can only echo the above - my brother-in-law and sister are both teachers. Wine and chocolate are always good. Particularly as my sister will get about 20 boxes next week and just have to share them. I know it's really unimaginative but it's true. Don't feel you have to get something different/amazing/memorable.

claireindevon Fri 12-Jul-13 15:45:54

Is all this gift giving obligatory then? They are doing paid work they've chosen after all.

giddywithglee Fri 12-Jul-13 15:51:33

Definitely not obligatory, I can't speak for other teachers but my DH definitely doesn't expect gifts.

It is nice to feel appreciated if they've gone that extra mile for a particular child, though.

Levvylife Fri 12-Jul-13 16:05:56

I think I'm just going to make a couple of batches of brownies for them to share. Both kids seem to have about three teachers each so seems the simplest choice...

Reastie Fri 12-Jul-13 16:18:11

YY to a nice thoughtful note in a card being the best present of all.

A tin of cakes/biscuits in the staff room for everyone to help themselves to always goes down very well.

As for wine/chocs - I'd say a pretty safe bet unless you're a teacher like me who doesn't drink and has a special diet and I appreciate the thought when I'm given these.

Personally, I wouldn't eat any homemade things as I'm wary of their provenance (you never know....) but I'm fussy in this respect and I'm sure most people wouldn't think twice about this.

Love the lottery ticket idea - that would be fab (but then depends how strict your morals are as to encouraging betting with explaining it to your DC wink )

Re: homemade tat gifts, nice idea if they are genuinely nice or lots of time/thought taken to do them (and preferably not that big!) but I can imagine every year 30 homemade gifts would overtake the poor teachers house a bit grin . I'm secondary so children don't seem bothered about making things for me!

grants1000 Fri 12-Jul-13 17:00:50

"Any gift over £25 must be reported to the HT, LEA & HMRC. The teacher will either not be allowed to accept it or will have to pay tax on the gift.

Big crackdown at the moment. We got emails before the end of term (Scotland)"

Jesus! Party pooping bastards! So Scottish!!wink

exoticfruits Fri 12-Jul-13 17:20:02

Do Scots buy gifts over £25? grin

puffinnuffin Fri 12-Jul-13 18:23:29

The nicest (and only present) I got this year is a pot of cress grown by the Nursery children especially for me. They decorated the pot too. That meant so much to me and such a lovely thing to do. They also painted a sweet thank you card.

I am a part time teacher so don't get get gifts/cards/verbal thank you's or anything. However when I was a full time teacher I loved little homemade cards with lovely words. I have kept them all over 20 years. I actually do like mugs and cards with teacher on! Anything personal, not costing very much was lovely. It really is the thought that counts.

At my children's school and also where I work, we were forced into giving 'donations' of £20 for one class and a similar amount for another class, split between the teachers and TA's. The teachers were given over £100 vouchers plus individual presents (even though we were supposed to club together). As a teacher I find this awful- it is completely impersonal, far too much money and way OTT! I can understand possibly if a teacher was leaving and had been there a long time but this seems to be the done thing every year.

eviekingston Fri 12-Jul-13 19:05:20

Ha ha! Was thinking how lovely it was that there was actually a thread appreciating teachers and even considering getting them (gasp!) a small gift when of course on page 5 some cheery soul chimes in with the ' they're just doing their job, why get them a present' comment...ah well, maybe next time we'll get through a whole thread..

Periwinkle007 Fri 12-Jul-13 19:13:37

we have done a collection for the Teacher and TAs in my daughter's class. I hope they don't think it is impersonal Puffinnuffinsad

mind having said that we didn't request a specific amount so people just gave a few pounds and I have tried to buy suitable but personal gifts for the ladies.

we have personalised stickers for the teacher (I know how much my mum used to spend on buying things like that herself when teaching), accessorize jewellery I got in the sale but tailored to their styles so bracelet for one who wears them but not necklaces and necklaces that match the other 2s individual tastes. and then a small M&S voucher as I thought they could then buy one of those meals for £10 things if they wanted to and treat themselves.

It is from about 2/3rds of the parents in the class.

PickleFish Fri 12-Jul-13 19:23:04

I really like vouchers - even for the tiniest amount - to somewhere that they know or think I might shop at/eat at/drink coffee at, because I can always use them and there's no need to have to find places for things that I might not really have chosen myself. I always feel badly if I do end up giving away something that was well-intentioned, but just not something I can find room for or would wear or use, so I do end up keeping it but feel cluttered. Otherwise edible presents also good from that point of view.

I don't expect gifts, but do really appreciate it if I am given something, and especially with a card or verbal thank you.

Voodika Fri 12-Jul-13 19:31:22

Presents are lovely but handmade cards are my absolute favourite. If I'm honest homemade chutney isn't the best idea!

Oblomov Fri 12-Jul-13 20:18:55

I have nominated myself to collect the teachers present this year. She is lovely. And she is leaving.
I was thinking m&s jewellery, plus receipt. And then John Lewis vouchers. Plus all children to draw a picture, to thank her, which I will put in a scrapbook. And card for parents to sign.
Now seen the idea of the eBay personalised stamp. I like that.

Threewindmills Fri 12-Jul-13 21:04:24

I got my dc's teacher a box of really special biscuits from biscuiteers and a homemade card

yorkshirepuddings Fri 12-Jul-13 21:29:56

A few years ago I wrote a letter to the HT saying exactly why I was so pleased with the teacher he had and how happy the school made all the children feel. It was very much appreciated - I actually received a lovely letter back, thanking me for my letter.

I am a secondary school teacher so we don't get as many. I did once get a lovely letter from a parent that made me cry. Yesterday I got a homemade keyring which meant a huge amount.

TBH us secondary school teachers accept anything, because the thought that a child who you only see for such a small part of the week wants to thank you means sooooo much.

puffinnuffin Fri 12-Jul-13 21:40:57

Periwinkle- your collection sounds very thoughtful as you have tailored the presents to match the people. Personalised stickers sound great!

CharmingCats Fri 12-Jul-13 21:49:47

I agree with previous posts on heartfelt gifts and cards being lovely. But I'd like to add something to the mix, perhaps controversially. I attended a governors' meeting at a school a few years ago where it was discussed that gifts should be declared in a public register under bribery and corruption guidelines. with all the outcry about public sector workers' expenses and gifts, it might start being more widespread. This school also agreed that alcohol isn't an appropriate gift and would be communicated to parents. I've never heard of this in another school, but just some food for thought.
I always keep any chocs given to me and put them in the staff room when we're running low a few weeks into term.

pennygallops Fri 12-Jul-13 22:41:37

I've had two gifts so far this term - both fantastic.

One is a little plastic stationary box with a poem inside the lid link to m and m (marvellous and magnificent teacher), in the little spaces are m and ms and bits of stationary. I've copied this idea and so has a friend.

The other was from a parent I see at parkruns, her son and I discuss times on Monday morning. They gave me running socks and sweat bands!

So basically I like a homemade present or something linked to me. I got some jars of coffee at Christmas because I like my coffee.

I put DDs teacher a stamper last year, because she'd been asking my DD about where she could get a specific one.

rabbitlady Fri 12-Jul-13 23:03:46

home made card with a message about something good they've done - how the child enjoyed being in the class/lesson, or a particular event enjoyed...
or a message from parents about care and education.

Joskar Fri 12-Jul-13 23:25:46

I'm a teacher and I have to say it's very rare that we get gifts at my school. Perhaps it's more common in primary schools. Anyway the best thing is a card. If you really must buy something then booze or cake is always welcome but tbh I think it's really not necessary and I would certainly discourage my kids from thinking they should buy me anything. Believe me thanks is something that teachers rarely get and a card will be spot on. Mind you that notion of resources isn't half bad. I spend a fortune on resources. Teaching: the only job you steal supplies from home to take into work!

margot1962 Sat 13-Jul-13 01:25:00

How dull ...

margot1962 Sat 13-Jul-13 01:31:27

In response to someone saying gifts had been banned! If parents want to give gifts, that's lovely and I would never proscribe what!

herecomesthsun Sat 13-Jul-13 05:09:43

We get bottles of wine on meal deals, supposedly £6 or £7 in value, and don't use them. So I donated 3 to the 3 classroom staff at Xmas, knowing that the lead teacher and partner do like a bottle of wine on a weekend evening.

Not sure what to do as a leaving pressie. DS can write and draw now, and couldn't when he started school so trying to get him to draw a card/write thank you would be good. It has been a really great year. I am sure the other parents would happily club together for a big pressie mind you.

Accidentallyquirky Sat 13-Jul-13 06:14:02

At Christmas for my dds key worker (nursery) I know she has a similar aged dc so made a little Christmas gift pack with a £3 DVD, popcorn, sweeties, Xmas activity book etc for them to do together and a mini bottle of wine for her to drink herself.

I spent around £10 and I'm pretty sure she liked it as she cried when thanking me at home time.

I bought a big box of biscuits for the rest of the staff to share.

For the end of the school year I'm making a few tray bakes for the staff room and haven't decided yet what token gift to give her key worker so getting some inspiration from this thread smile

Accidentallyquirky Sat 13-Jul-13 06:14:11

At Christmas for my dds key worker (nursery) I know she has a similar aged dc so made a little Christmas gift pack with a £3 DVD, popcorn, sweeties, Xmas activity book etc for them to do together and a mini bottle of wine for her to drink herself.

I spent around £10 and I'm pretty sure she liked it as she cried when thanking me at home time.

I bought a big box of biscuits for the rest of the staff to share.

For the end of the school year I'm making a few tray bakes for the staff room and haven't decided yet what token gift to give her key worker so getting some inspiration from this thread smile

comelywenchlywoo Sat 13-Jul-13 09:11:39

Well I wasn't sure about buying a posh candle, but I did and she loved it, so there! (it was a risk tho)

giddywithglee Sat 13-Jul-13 09:13:38

Handmade cards are lovely, they always go on display in our house and then we keep them afterwards.

justgivemeareason Sat 13-Jul-13 09:28:08

Any gift would be well-received BUT

I wouldn't touch any homemade food, whether it was made by a child or parent. I don't think many teachers would to be honest, even if they act delighted.

Teachers always get too much chocolate.

You can never have too many mugs because in my school they always go missing.

I would be embarrassed if parents clubbed together to give money or vouchers.

Flowers can be tricky as sometimes at the end of term you get so many you don't have anywhere to put them all.

I always appreciate wine and almost every teacher I know would as well. I can only think of one non-drinker on my staff.

I don't personally like stationery although some teachers do.

A gift that is chosen by the child is always nice.

intheshed Sat 13-Jul-13 09:46:40

I decided to get something for the classroom rather than the teacher... DD has loved her reception year so much, and especially liked their minibeasts topic so I have got a couple of lovely books about minibeasts and some minibeast finger puppets. I plan to write a note to the teacher and TAs to say we wanted to leave something behind for the new reception children, so that they could enjoy it as much as DD had. And the usual homemade cards too.

Just hope they don't go hmm what no wine?

kimmills222 Sat 13-Jul-13 11:15:46

I would also suggest you to go for some home made cookies, cakes or biscuits with some nice decorations on them or very neatly packaging. Home- made stuff is always a welcome change from the ones available in the market.

DaddyPigsMistress Sat 13-Jul-13 12:38:34

Ive bought a paperchase notebook for the teacher aand the TA. I tend to just do a card but both have helped my son so much this year. I might write a letter to the head but every draft has sounded really cheesey so I will have to see how it turns out

DaddyPigsMistress (fab name BTW!) Do please send the letter to the Head.

One of my parents sent one this week. The Head showed me and I cried! I will treasure the words always.... cheesy or otherwise smile

katydid02 Sat 13-Jul-13 14:00:08

My youngest had an exceptionally good year this year and his teacher has gone above and beyond the call of duty. I bought her an Accessorise gift card and I hope she can find herself something lovely in there, or put it towards something lovely. That said, I am now worrying in case she thinks it was a silly gift to give sad

DaddyPigsMistress Sat 13-Jul-13 14:42:34

I think after reading through the thread I will def send it although I will have my dad look ove it as he is much more eloquent then me. I tend to ramble and over explain things. Ds will have the teacher for year six next year too so I dont want to come across as weird grin

They really did so much for ds he went from levels below his age to bang on or slightly above,not to mention the confidence and pride they has given him after 3 years of solid bullying at his old school. He really is a different boy.

Your second paragraph - in fact, your last sentence - is just what they will want to hear, I'm sure!

RonaldMcDonald Sat 13-Jul-13 15:45:34

Pizza Express Card or House of Fraser card
Teacher TA and School Sec seemed happy

Periwinkle007 Sat 13-Jul-13 16:42:20

phew - thanks Puffinnuffin

rabbitrabbitrabbit Sat 13-Jul-13 23:40:38

At half term my DD (reception) planted marigold seeds for each member of her teaching team (4). She’s been watching the plants grow for weeks. Last weekend she painted the pots and sprinkled them with glitter. I figure if they are going away the plant would survive in the garden/ outside. I’ve also saved pictures and writing that she has done about reception that we’re going to make into cards. DD has asked to make biscuits too. I figure we are going the disposable homemade gift route. It is well meant, she has had a great year and has really settled into school. I can’t decide if it is too much or not enough, but it has all involved DD.

I am a secondary school teacher and have loved every gift I have ever been given.
The best are letters and cards showing appreciation though, and they cost very little to do. I have one from a Polish pupil that says "My English is better because you learn me good." I've kept it for ten years.
I wrote a letter to DS' reception teacher last year and she loved it. I'm going to do the same for his Year 1 teacher as it was her NQT year and she was great for DS. Then I'll do homemade cake for the staffroom - which they all eat because they tell me! It always gets eaten in our staffroom too.
I would love book tokens/amazon vouchers/paperchase stationary and I'm pretty sure all other teachers would too. I would also be happy to receive mugs, wine and chocolate - they can be re-gifted.
It isn't necessary to give anything at all, and I hate the idea of collections, but I think it's a lovely thing to do. Primary school teachers work bloody hard and when the pupils respond well it's great to get some recognition. rabbitrabbitrabbit,that sounds lovely.

JiltedJohnsJulie Sun 14-Jul-13 08:49:30

How do you feel about homemade chocolates? We know DDs teacher is a bit of a chocoholic and I thought of making some truffles with dd for her. Do you think they would be ok?

exoticfruits Sun 14-Jul-13 11:10:50

Depends entirely on which child is providing them!

Charlieb57 Sun 14-Jul-13 13:18:17

I am a secondary school teacher and have to say that I was shocked to find out that this is standard practice in primary schools and that parents club together to give huge amounts of money/valuable presents to primary school teachers and staff. Let me reassure parents that it is not common practice in secondary schools (you are lucky if you get a thank you at parents' evening). My friend is now feeling under pressure to give at least £20 to her eldest son's teacher for the end of year 'gift' and is dreading the 'request' from the parents of children in her younger son's class

exoticfruits Sun 14-Jul-13 15:40:34

You need to stop the class collection and just tell them you are doing your own thing- e.g a bunch of sweetpeas from your garden would be lovely. My DSs never gave presents to secondary teachers.

mynameisnotmichaelcaine Sun 14-Jul-13 16:07:20

The school my kids go to do a thing where they have a "special person" of the week in KS1. When mine were in KS1 I used to do a "special person" certificate for the teacher and TAs, basing it on what my DD/DS had said were their favourite things about the teacher.

Every time I made one I was told it was going to be framed in their house, and had made them cry. I have no way of knowing if this is true, of course, but they seemed to be genuine!

I am secondary teacher, so tend to get less gifts, and they tend to be chocolate, which is fine by me! The best things to get for me are keyrings made by the kids, I have a large collection which has made my keys quite heavy, but I love them all.

Also second the funky post-it notes - I get through loads.

mynameisnotmichaelcaine Sun 14-Jul-13 16:14:26

fewer gifts! Shame on me!

starfishmummy Sun 14-Jul-13 16:41:46

Whatever you do, do not delegate to your OH.

Last year, a few hours after making my usual choc truffles, I went down with d&v so decided the chocs needed to go in the bin. Being in no fit state to go shopping for last minute alternatives, it was delegated to dh.
Admittedly the jars were very pretty, but dolly mixtures???!!!!!

Beccadugs Sun 14-Jul-13 17:12:14

When I worked in a school I used to love it when parents bought new books for the class library or my story chest. Brilliant as useful going forward, and also totally my thing.

DollyWhite Sun 14-Jul-13 17:28:20

My mother used to get nothing but chocolates in her teaching days. She was very pleased and grateful ('twas the gesture) and my friends and I were allowed to eat them a few at a time until they were gone, which could take months <selfish>

redrubyshoes Sun 14-Jul-13 17:52:32

A hand made card from the child with a photo and no more. Just enough. Make sure it is signed (legibly) and dated for a teacher to look back at in years to come.

Phaedra11 Sun 14-Jul-13 18:11:09

I used to be a primary school teacher and when it got to the end of my first year I couldn't believe how much chocolate I acquired. My favourite gift was a basket of fruit and I always said that was what I'd give the teacher when I had kids. I think I did for one year and then realised a box of Roses was so much simpler. Sorry teachers!

pennygallops Sun 14-Jul-13 20:32:20

I'd love Costa vouchers too.

lisad123everybodydancenow Sun 14-Jul-13 20:36:52

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

zipzap Sun 14-Jul-13 20:42:26

I was thinking of a bottle of pimms but I seem to have missed the cheap offers so might have to rethink that! Plus a plant grown by ds and a handmade Christmas decoration in the shape of the class mascot (which she would have got at Xmas except the little bells I'd ordered from eBay didn't come in time and there are lots in distinctly unchristmassy colours so it can hang around the bottle instead).

Liking the idea of a stamp for the other teacher who uses them lots in other DS's book. How long did they take to come - and which eBay supplier did you use?

PickleFish Sun 14-Jul-13 20:45:47

Oh I'd have loved Pimms.

And coffee shop vouchers, even the smallest amount.

Not generally keen on decorative stuff for the house for reasons of space and dusting, but Christmas decorations have the advantage of just being able to use them for a while, then put them away, so they can be nice.

Periwinkle007 Sun 14-Jul-13 20:49:27

zipzap - can't help on the stamp because the ones I looked at were going to take too long but I got these stickers from this seller and they came within 48hrs.
http://compare.ebay.co.uk/like/140920042930?var=gv&ltyp=AllFixedPriceItemTypes&var=sbar&_lwgsi=y&cbt=y&device=c&adtype=pla&crdt=0&ff3=1&ff11=ICEP3.0.0&ff12=67&ff13=80&ff14=65

nurseneedshelp Sun 14-Jul-13 20:49:33

I've never ever given a present!

Although I'm very grateful for their input its their job and they get paid to do it!

If I got a present from every patient I cared for I'd be inundated.

Can't get my head around it tbh.

Periwinkle007 Sun 14-Jul-13 20:55:55

I am only doing it for reception and only really because I really feel my daughter's staff have gone above and beyond what they have to do IMO. I would have just got them something each but people were mumbling about a collection so as the daughter of a teacher so I have some insight into things people are less keen on receiving I said I would organise it. About half the parents have contributed a small amount which has then been split between the 3 members of staff.

next year we will probably give the teacher a small thank you individually but I won't be doing another collection (well except for the reception teachers for my other daughter)

Those si

Bollocks. Stupid phone.

Have just ordered some stickers, they look great and dd1's reception teacher does love a sticker!

DD1 has written in a card (not homemade sadly) and I've put a note in too. There's also a class collection. I think we're covered!

pennygallops Sun 14-Jul-13 21:31:57

My DS and I have finished putting together the presents they will be giving to their teachers, the head and one very special teaching assistant (who also runs breakfast club).

nurseneedshelp my mum was a district nurse and I clearly remember she was given many gifts from patients or their families either at Christmas or a different times throughout the year. And when she died, my family took flowers and biscuits to the staff on the ward who helped make her last few days more comfortable.

i think a lot of public sector workers are there for the love of the job, sometimes get a 'kicking' from the press. The gift is just a little show of thanks for their hard work.

peacefuleasyfeeling Sun 14-Jul-13 22:28:49

I'm a primary school teacher. If you're lucky, your child will have a teacher who shares of him or herself in the classroom, and who isn't afraid to be a real person. Children are naturally curious and will have picked up lots of snippets of information about what their teacher is into. My most treasured end of year gifts have been the ones which reflect that; plants for the garden, seed packets, a pocket field guide to wild flowers.
Ask your child about their teacher, and what they're into. Their teacher will be touched that your child has paid such attention to them as a real person.

lardprao Sun 14-Jul-13 22:38:20

MY worst was a bar of obviously used soap rewrapped in admittedly gorgeous paper and the best was a Spa day voucher. Agree with the post that said a letter specifying the difference The teacher had made...they are the absolute best.

katydid02 Mon 15-Jul-13 07:22:55

I agree with the letters as well; my DCs write what they have liked best about the year.
I'm sorting out a card for a teacher at the moment, I work in a school as a TA and I have got each child in the class to write what they have liked best about the teacher and draw a little picture. I am putting them altogether inside a big homemade card. That way every child has done something and it doesn't matter a jot whether their parents do anything or not, the teacher has a personal gift from each child. Just hope they appreciate it!

HappyAsEyeAm Mon 15-Jul-13 08:48:39

*zipzap& I bought a personalised stamp from ebay. The seller was instamp. I bought it maybe two weeks ago (see my posts on this thread for the actual dates as I think I posted when I bought it and when I received it) and I think it took about 5 days to get to me. I am really pleased with it, and DS1's teacher liked it too.

StepAwayFromTheEcclesCakes Mon 15-Jul-13 09:18:19

personalised post its from somewhere online, pot up a tomato plant or strawberry plant in a plain pot and get DC to personalise it with ceramic paint. get some UV beads and make a bracelet or keyring thing for a bag (they change colour in the sun to show when the UV rays are strong enough to remind when to apply / reapply suncream) or start a new trend for homemade cards only, nothing else at all. grin

Crabbypink Mon 15-Jul-13 10:15:03

My children are in secondary. We give like this:
champagne to teachers who went OTT for my children personally
bottle of a sultry red to teachers who we appreciate
bottle of nice cordial and some biscuits (sometimes homemade) for the head, because she doesn't drink alcohol.
Seems to work. Everyone smiles.

speedyboots Mon 15-Jul-13 11:06:18

I agree with lots of the ideas on here - I'm always grateful for any gifts. However a whole class present that I've received and loved is a photo book with photos and comments from each child and photos from throughout the year (of trips, performances etc). It could just be done as a scrapbook with the different bits stuck in. Slightly off topic, but before I went on maternity leave I was given a scrapbook with a drawing/letter from each child (Reception), a picture of each child as a baby and a list of (helpful) advice from the mums. It was lovely as totally personal and so much effort had gone into it.

I was going to start a thread like this.

I'm thinking of an M&S voucher, home made fudge and a nice card made my little one with her picture and nice words. Is that O.K??

We do have 3 teachers in the class and my daughters one to one lady, so maybe the vouchers could just be for her main teacher and one to one.

leobeebs Mon 15-Jul-13 11:37:28

I've just bought some stickers thanks that's a great idea. Am also considering an battery pencil sharpener.

I'm useless got my sons leavers assembly tomorrow before he starts juniors and crying already. Even reading this thread had got tears rolling.

Dds first teacher hinted that she had particularly loved the Chocolate Guinness cake I made for the fayre so made one for her.
This year dd has had 2 teachers jobsharing and I have to say I haven't really gelled with them for several reasons so didn't bother with a pressie. Next year she has her favourite ever teacher again so I'm guessing she'll want to give her something very good! Loving all the ideas here.

Elibean Mon 15-Jul-13 12:46:17

We figure out what we can buy with the money we have collected, once almost done.

So this year, for example, dd's main class teacher has a lovely big basket with leather handles (from a shop I can see she shops from wink), filled with flowers and a Jo Malone something or other. TA has a multicoloured basket with flowers in in. Male p/t teacher has a mini chess set (he runs chess club) with wine gadgets/corkscrew etc in and two nice bottles of wine.

And cards, with messages and thanks from all the parents and carers.

The dds like to do their own, home made cards too - but that's separate.

justgivemeareason - really? no homemade food at all? That's discouraging, although I do see your reasoning. OTOH, I know the staff at DC's school like my cakes because they buy them before they get as far as the stall for cake sales thus making me look like I didn't bring anything so I hope/believe that doesn't apply.

I have just established (after DS tried to sell her a cake at the village fete) that his favourite subject teacher is coeliac, so I think I will be looking for a good gluten free Christmas cake recipe.

YummmyMummy Mon 15-Jul-13 17:33:48

I've made a bundle of my 'favourite things'. Chocolate, wine, yankee candle, magazine, moroccan oil, a lip gloss, costa voucher and a few other cheapish but luxurious bits that I love and think the teacher and TA's may also love and have put them in an oilcloth book bag. Probably spent about £120 for all 2 of them in total and that's just for one class but my daughter will be leaving them at the end of term. The preschool teachers will just have the oilcloth bag each as my son is returning to them in September so we're not saying goodbye as it were, just thanks for a great term and I will be doing the 'favourite things' parcel for them at Christmas. In the past have bought teachers a jo malone travel candle for TA and Jo malone home candle for teacher. Just over £60 for the two of them but a lovely gift they were thrilled with. I'm by no means well off but I think they deserve to be appreciated. I'm a medical typey professional and do get thank you gifts often. It's certainly the thought that counts but for most people, not much thought goes in a tin of roses.

my dd who is 5 has just drawn a picture for her reception teacher with the words 'I wish you could be my mum' written on it biscuit and me and dh will get her a bottle of wine or a book voucher. She is a really lovely lady and has made my dd's first experience of school so lovely.

FasterStronger Mon 15-Jul-13 19:43:50

DP is a HT and was a classroom teacher for many years.

some of these presents sound lovely but something tiny or homemade or cheap is also appreciated very much.

or nothing.

eviekingston Mon 15-Jul-13 20:01:56

I don't expect anything, but it's always nice to receive a token of appreciation whether that is a gift or a cake or a card. I would love homemade cakes or sweets! I often get vouchers from the whole class, and that is lovely, but i would hate to think that anybody had been pressurised into contributing. I am delighted with anything because it shows that parents have been happy with what i have been doing for their children, and that really matters to me. Teaching is a profession which is become less and less respected by many - yes it's bloody hard work (so are a lot of jobs) but actually what I am always grateful for is the recognition that I am actually caring for and nurturing the children in my class not just educating them. For my own son's teacher, I have contributed to a class collection as well as bought small individual presents for the TA and LSA. I will also write cards expressing how incredibly grateful I am for their care and support during his first year at school.

Snowyelephantshavewrinkles Tue 16-Jul-13 06:54:38

Am an LSA not teacher but I received petrol vouchers with a nice home made card once. That was one of my favourites.

zipzap Tue 16-Jul-13 06:58:41

But yummymummy surely what you are doing is pretty much the same as getting a box of chocolates but on a bigger scale?

For people that don't have £120 to spend on the leaving presents they may have chosen just one of the things in your oilskin bag as goodies with just as much care as you have - for all you know, they may think that you've just grabbed a load of bits that you regularly use when you were buying them for yourself. Or that it's a bit controlling to give them your favourite things. You haven't gone out and chosen one special thing each for them with the same money.

I think it's a pretty mean thing to suggest that a box of roses automatically equals no thought. Whilst it can do in some cases in others a box of roses (or any other chocolates for that matter) is chosen precisely because for them it's something they love and hope the teacher will too - exactly the same as your sentiments.

LottieJenkins Tue 16-Jul-13 07:48:48

Willow Tree Angels do a lovely Angel of Learning. I have bought that for Wilf's teacher before as well as Angel Signing Love and Angel of Friendship. She has also had a Suffolk Rose which went to Kent! smile

secretarybird1 Tue 16-Jul-13 10:18:33

Best ever was a card (made by 'accident prone' child) which said "Thank you for all the plasters" - I'll never forget it. Spent 24 wonderful years as school secretary.

carrie74 Tue 16-Jul-13 11:35:54

Thank you for these ideas for my last minute panic. I've organised class collections in the past, but this year time and life got in the way.

Have ordered some good pen sets for the 2 teachers, plus some stamps for the 2TAs for my children's teachers, and will try and get an Ocado order in before the end of the week with a big yin of biscuits for the staff room (that can be kept until Sept if required).

I've also put a reminder in my diary to sort this out at the beginning of July next year!!!

carrie74 Tue 16-Jul-13 11:36:46

Oh, and I'll also write my (honest, and heartfelt) thanks for both teachers who've been fantastic this year, and hopefully persuade the children to do one as well.

MickeyMixer Tue 16-Jul-13 12:11:52

I have homemade Fimo coasters which say 'from Zoe with love' which I have kept and used ob my desk since I was given them in 1997! Home made and personal is best IMHO.
Also I like mugs - but I prefer them to be china and NOT to say 'best teacher' etc. on them!

MickeyMixer Tue 16-Jul-13 12:12:34

On my desk - not ob! Obviously!

insanityscratching Tue 16-Jul-13 12:43:44

Ds now 23 through his job (Local Government) emailed his old y6 teacher who is now a HT elsewhere. He was amazed when he not only remembered him but also what he had written in a card to him when ds moved into secondary and referred to it. "The work was good, the games were great, the ties and the jokes were awful" HT assured him that his dress sense had improved more than his jokes grin Proof I suppose that a card with a heartfelt message is always appreciated.

LurcioLovesFrankie Tue 16-Jul-13 13:18:40

The bottle of whisky with the security tag on story has reminded me of one of my mum's lovely anecdotes. She was a secondary teacher and had a rare knack of getting on with the particularly difficult teenagers (and she taught in a succession of sink schools, so difficult usually meant a combination of behavioural difficulties and severe social deprivation). One day she came home with a bag of cream cakes, and explained that it was the non-exam stream 5th form's last day in school. Three of the real tearaways had come in (first time in about a year, they were habitual truants) specially to say goodbye to her, and handed over the bag with the words "look, miss, they're in the baker's bag, we didn't nick 'em."

When she told this story in later years, she was able to update on their progress - two had ended up in borstal (as it was then called) and the other in Strangeways!

auntiezzzzz Tue 16-Jul-13 13:59:45

DD is leaving her primary this week after 8 years inc nursery. I will do the usual bottle of wine for her class teacher, but would like to do something for the school.

I asked her what she'd like to contribute and she said a climbing frame! Might just fall outside my budget of £25.

Any ideas? I was thinking of something to add to the playground toys collection or maybe a shrub for their new play area. Has anyone done this? would it be better to just write a cheque to the PTA or is that a bit impersonal?

insanityscratching Tue 16-Jul-13 14:12:43

When ds left his ASD unit after five years I sent a cheque to the head of the unit asking that they use the money as they saw fit He phoned to say that they would be purchasing a piece of equipment for the unit so that they would remember ds each time it was used.

auntiezzzzz Tue 16-Jul-13 14:14:54

That's lovely insanity. Yes I'll do that. Thanks.

acsec Tue 16-Jul-13 21:26:10

I love a heartfelt thank you note or card smile

Handmade gifts are lovely, please no mugs or ornaments though!

BlackeyedSusan Tue 16-Jul-13 22:11:53

my favourite prresents are a plastic box covered with glitter and plastic jewels, chosen by the child in question

a minature rose bush with hand written message by a reception child.

and a mug with a forever friends teddy on.

lottieandmia Tue 16-Jul-13 22:32:49

Thanks for the advice on this thread - I bought a gift voucher which was well received.

Riv Tue 16-Jul-13 22:58:05

I don't expect anything. I''m doing my job and I do get paid for it, but it's lovely to get a card or even better a note saying thanks - preferably home made by the pupil.
One year I got a real lemon a tiny can of slimline tonic and a minature bottle of gin (the one drink type). Lovely. (grin)
Anything expensive (over a fiver) makes me feel uncomfortable. Anything chosen or, even better, made by your DC is particularly special

JennyWren Wed 17-Jul-13 03:02:42

I am planning to take ice creams in for the staff room at lunchtime. The last week of term has crept up on me and it has occurred to me that they'll probably be the best thing I can arrange in a hurry!

Ooh Jenny that does sound good. An old boss of mine used to send his PA out to the ice cream van on super hot days and it was always vastly appreciated!

MABS Wed 17-Jul-13 10:28:09

always champagne, for his 3 teachers, head and matron. He broke up in late June and wrote personal notes to all of them too, albeit reluctantly!

NigellaEllaElla Wed 17-Jul-13 10:34:16

I have bought DS1's teacher a gift voucher for 2 seats in the deluxe screen of the local cinema with popcorn and drinks. Thought it would be a nice treat during the holidays.

MangoJuiceAddict Wed 17-Jul-13 10:48:14

Every year I usually go for the fail safe option of flowers, a homemade 'thank you' card made by DD and a box of chocolates, maybe an M&S voucher if the teacher has been particularly helpful that year. Not particularly exciting or original but everybody likes flowers and chocolates. And my DD makes fantastic cards.

alispu Wed 17-Jul-13 12:09:36

Hi - as a teacher a lovely card with a geniune message of thanks is really appreciated and something to be treasured or recycled appropriately (beautiful cards always go down well)

littlemrssleepy Wed 17-Jul-13 12:11:56

We got these Bargain at £3.
And a homemade card.

GW297 Wed 17-Jul-13 12:23:44

Nigella - that's one of my favourite ideas. Another friend does that with popcorn and minstrels 'night out on us!'

snigger Wed 17-Jul-13 13:46:11

I usually gift something as personal as possible to a max of £10 to each individual teacher, and twice that to the school secretary because she's a living goddess.

This year it was gardening gloves (TK Maxx, steal, ex-Laura Ashley, ponce alert) hand cream and organic soap to one, tartan tie (this teacher has a wee 'thing' going on with theme ties, according to DD2) and shortie to another, and a large lidded glass jar full of individually wrapped cakes, biscuits, and penny-tray lollies to the head.

If you think hard and shop in advance you can make up a really personal gift based on that year's feedback for not too much.

I always hope they see that DD, and by extension, I have listened and cared about them as much as they have.

clarasebal Wed 18-Sep-13 19:11:02

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