Every weekday morning, your children's teachers help your kids learn everything from taking turns to algebraic equations. Give their teachers little tokens of your appreciation -- a personal letter or a basket of classroom supplies -- to let them know how they're making a difference in your kids' lives. We asked teachers everywhere what their favorite gifts have been, and these are the top eight gifts they loved.
Mark It Up. You wouldn't believe it, but all teachers crave at the end of the day isn't a stiff drink -- it's a dry-erase marker that works. They spend countless hours writing words of knowledge on the whiteboard for your kiddos to absorb. Help your kids get smarter by supplying classrooms with new dry-erase markers in a crayon-box array of colors, plus a few erasers to keep the board clean.
Story Time. The best stories are ones created in the classrooms. Rally the classroom parents to have each child submit a picture and write a note or story to the teacher about a favorite memory from the year. Collect the pages and bind them together to create a one-of-a-kind memory book.
Clean Sweep. A basket of goodies may mean one thing to you, but to a teacher it means a basket of classroom cleaning supplies. Keyboard lint removers, cleaning wipes, hand sanitizer, antibacterial hand lotion, whiteboard cleaner, microfiber cloths, and/or hand soap can be a teacher's dream come true.
Did You Get the Memo? Notes and checklists are an adult's best friend. When there is more than one thing happening at the same time -- a frequent occurence in the classroom -- it can be easy to forget little things. Give notepads, memo books, repositionable notes, paper, pens, pencils, markers, and/or crayons to help your kids' teachers keep things straight.
More than A, B, C. Important letters aren't just those in the alphabet. A handwritten letter to your kids' teachers, either from you or your children, can have a strong impact. Let them know how much their hard work is paying off for your little ones or why your children are having such a great year. Those letters might not be memorized, but they'll never be forgotten.
Let Them Eat Lunch. Often times, teachers will have a hard time getting a long lunch break, especially if they have lunch duty. Give them the chance to pack their lunch with style in a cute, reusable lunch tote and insulated food containers.
Better than Recess. Kids go bonkers when they get a chance to play in the classroom. A brainteaser or educational-based game allows them to have fun while they're learning -- and games can give the teacher a short break to regroup and prepare for the next lesson. You'll make teachers extra-happy with classroom games related to what they teach: for example, a book of Mad Libs for an English teacher's room and a book of Sudoku for a Math teacher's room are perfect gifts.
The Gift Card Says It All. Clothing stores. Book stores. Shoot, give them a gift card for a fast-food restaurant and your kids' teachers will love you. Gift cards -- enough said.