Our Top 5 Unique Teacher Group Gift Ideas (That They Actually Want!)
When I was younger I remember seeing my teacher in Sainsbury's. The prospect made my jaw swing. A teacher? Doing normal things? I was flabbergasted. Up until this point, I had assumed that all teachers lived in the school, sleeping hung up in the pencil closets like giant bats.
Now that I'm older I can laugh at these false pretences, but the reality stands up. Teachers are regular people, the same as you and I.
Who would have thought?
My mother used to fret around the kitchen baking cookies for my teachers, hustling to ensure they reached their destination with the earnest sentiment. An expression of gratitude for removing the stress of childcare five days a week, mildly educating her son in the process.
A wholesome tradition that has largely stuck. Take it from me, there is some gap between what teachers actually want versus what they receive. They’re human at the end of the day, as we previously established.
So beyond the cheap wine, chocolates and hand-painted mugs, a group gift maybe a better route in avoiding all the standard clichés!
1. Spa Day
I’m biased towards the positive effects of a spa day; being from Bath, it’s a reflection of pride for my upbringing. But there’s no alternative to frame it with - spa days are awesome, for teachers, relaxing becomes a necessity. Especially with younger children, teachers find themselves being pulled apart in different directions. Standing, sitting, running and crouching. A massage seems to be an obvious cure for all the aches and pains that may have built up over the year spent chasing youngsters around a classroom!
2. A Games Console
Upon researching for this blog I came across a story about a teacher who would use a Wii in the classroom to teach more interactively. The parents had all clubbed together at the end of the year to buy the teacher a games console in reference to the efforts of the teacher not going unnoticed.
I had two immediate thoughts. Firstly, bloody hell that must be one big class to afford a gift of that magnitude! But second, what a damn wholesome way to express gratitude to somebody, that’s a really thoughtful and meaningful gift that; also really bloody cool for the teacher who has now walked away with a Switch!
Later I had an additional muse, something along the lines of being jealous that my teachers weren’t able to conjure up such ingenious ways to wrestle my attention. What an engaging teacher I thought, "somebody give that man a raise!"
Now, I'm not suggesting every teacher wants a games console, what I am saying is that a gift tailored made to the quirks of each teacher will go a long way; It shows that you really appreciate all the work they have done!
3. A Night Out (Or Day!)
Continuing on the ‘give a gift’ theme. Why not treat them to an evening out? Depending on where you live you can briefly scour the best restaurants in the area or maybe a trip to the cinema? Or both?
You could even throw in a bottle of wine resurrecting a spin on the old classic! Teachers' gifts are all about being thoughtful and expressing thanks, there isn’t a more wholesome way to do so than to simply give them a break in the form of a fun evening and the chance to escape for a while!
They will appreciate it!
4. Digital Media Subscription
Dressed in the forms of Spotify, Netflix and so on, Digital media consumption has long become the most prominent form of entertainment within our society. Everybody I know has got either a Netflix subscription or has nicked the password from their mate's account. These payments seem sprinkled about here and there but eventually they begin to pile up; It’s slightly terrifying.
I see a theme building here. The most pertinent expression of gratitude is the contribution to relaxation for teachers. Good news for Spotify, Amazon and any other content providers as they also double up as awesome teachers gifts!
You should consider buying your teacher a year's worth of subscription fees to any of the aforementioned. Perhaps go beyond a digital subscription, maybe they’re into fitness? Try a gym membership or a climbing centre annual pass?
5. Stone Cold Cash!
It may be obvious, instead of wading through the uncertainty of what teachers might really want, why don’t you just go with what teachers really want? A bit crass, but what person doesn't appreciate a wad of cold hard cash? That way, you remove doubt and ensure that they can spend the money in whatever way they feel is best, You can’t really go wrong with that!
How to put a thoughtful spin on this very English tradition?
Above is outlined a few out of the box suggestions for consideration, designed to build a personal connection.
Thinking back to my mother, fretting over those cookies; ever the ingenious proprietor of innovation, what would she have achieved with a little outside thinking and a group of willing Contributors I wonder? Something more eclectic, unique and memorable for all those teachers who made a career of putting up with me!
Food for thought.