When Teacher Appreciation Week Is & How to Thank a Teacher in 2022
Wondering what to do for Teacher Appreciation Week? This year, Teacher Appreciation Week starts on Monday, May 2 and ends on Friday, May 6. And these days, teachers do so very much that if you’re pondering how to thank a teacher, the simple answer is: sky’s the limit. Let’s review all they do (officially and unofficially, on and off the clock):
Health: Not always in the job description, but teachers deliver in the area of health and wellness time and time again, day in and day out. Teachers go the extra mile to ensure kids stay mentally engaged, interpersonally connected, emotionally healthy, and physically safe.
Academics: Oh yeah, and on top of all of the above, they teach them reading, writing, arithmetic, science, history, programming, art, music, and more.
Communication: Teachers communicate with students, parents, administrators, and staff about grades, behavior, learning challenges, and other charged topics that are almost never a walk in the part. Teachers manage to keep their cool while dealing with stakeholders who are sometimes not.
Investment: Teachers of all grades, from pre-school to high school, regularly purchase all manner of supplies out of their own pocket just to make things better and brighter for the kids in their classroom.
Self-Care: Teachers deliver consistently in what is usually a noisy, chaotic, emotionally charged environment—all while managing not to burn out.
Resilience: If this all sounds Herculean, we think it is, too. But there’s even more. Over the past few years these magical teachers, in addition to all of the above, have managed to pivot in many directions including teaching virtually, in-person, and socially distanced. They’ve done this while parenting their own kids and caring for their own families.
It’s clear these teachers deserve a break. We mean a long break. Like a trip to Hawaii. A new car. An unlimited and unending supply of coffee and donuts. Though resources for gifts like these may be non-existent, showing teachers you care doesn’t require unlimited cash. In the absence of deep pockets for gifts for teacher appreciation week, below we share fun, affordable, heart-felt teachers appreciation ideas that include customized gifts, fun contests, and special events that show you get it and are glad they do what they do.
Teacher Appreciation Ideas for Introverted Educators
You may be wondering how to thank a teacher who prefers a good book and a cup of chamomile tea to a zip line obstacle course followed by a karaoke happy hour. Introverts tend to enjoy time alone and when they do socialize, they prefer a small group of one or two friends. They appreciate time to process thoughts and feelings, and to recharge after social activities. Check out these introvert-inspirted gifts for teacher appreciation week that will not rock their world but rather, gently lull them into a spa-like trance.
Cat Café: Chances of a cat lover being bookish are pretty high. A good bet for a teacher for whom solitary confinement is a thing of beauty? A cat café, where quiet and usually aloof house cats roam among coffee drinking quiet types for an ambience that is the perfect combination of quirky and quiet.
Massage (Not the Chair): An extrovert won’t mind sitting on a kneeling chair with a face rest and getting a neck and shoulder massage in the middle of a packed room. On the other hand, for the introvert teacher, the public display may negate any destress benefits the masseuse aims to impart. Give a gift card to a local spa. Or distribute an at-home spa accessory, customized with your special messaging. Consider one of these one of these:
Wordle:Strive Math lets you create your own Wordle, copy the link, and distribute to your amazing teachers to play at their leisure. (We suggest using a winning Wordle word like “teach” or another five-letter word that’s equally relevant to Teacher Appreciation Week, such as “merci”, “chaos”, or “class”.) Have them screenshot their success and email it to you for a gift card associated with the number of tries it took, e.g., six tries earns a $10 gift card, five tries equals $20, three tries equals $30, and so on. Keep the love flowing (and your appreciation on display) by awarding customized gifts as well. We like these:
Teacher Appreciation Ideas for Extroverted Educators
Nothing tops of a week of non-stop multi-tasking and over-exertion better than a night of rollicking parties and fun. Right? For the teacher who starts before the sun goes up and doesn’t stop until someone turns out the lights, consider these activities and gifts for teacher appreciation week.
Escape Room: The smart and clever join forces with the quick-on-their feet for a night out (or “in”, unless you win) that promises to appeal to all the social butterflies teaching at your school. Start with dinner and a cocktail prior, to get everyone fueled up for the fun.
Catered Lunch: Treat your teachers to a special meal in the teacher’s lounge by splurging on a gourmet lunch. Accommodate dietary preferences and restrictions so everyone feels pampered. Abandon the buffet style set up in favor of caterers (or parents, students, or staff) serving each teacher. A little pampering to those who pamper will be remembered well after dishes have been cleared. (Don’t let your teachers do that, either!)
Concert or Sporting Event: Reserve a block of tickets at a local sporting event or concert. Distribute customized t-shirts or promotional caps at the event so it’s clear to all in the vicinity: This is a team of deserving teachers out on the town.
Raffle: You may not be able to afford a group trip to Italy, but if parents are donating or other resources are being pooled, you might be able to raffle off a weekend for two to Mexico, a spa getaway, or a week off at a lakefront home. Kick off one of the events above with raffle entries, and cap off the evening by announcing the winner(s).
Every Educator Feels Special with Customized Gifts for Teacher Appreciation Week
Make sure every teacher gets a little something, big or small. The gesture matters most, and these gifts send a message of thanks without breaking the bank.
Apples get mushy but apple shaped sticky notes make charming desk accessories all year long:
Something for Everyone
Want to show appreciation and not sure what your weary teacher most desires? Check off all the boxes with a gift set like this:
Give that tired teacher a drink! Every educator needs to stay hydrated in the classroom and after hours. Give them a gift they’ll use everywhere with customized drinkware that says you care:
You Care, and They’ll Know It, This Teacher Appreciation Week
Whether it’s a heart-felt email or a gift card to their favorite coffee spot, there is a plethora of things to do for teacher appreciation to give thanks to our hard-working educators. The most important part of how to thank a teacher? The “Thanks” part! To all the teachers everywhere who help our kids to grow into happy, healthy, good-hearted humans: We are awed. We are impressed. We are grateful.
2 years ago
Karleen Wise Andersen
From marketing tips to product recommendations, I’m here to help small businesses be their best.