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We’re nearing the end of another school year and I’m finding it hard to believe that my ‘baby’ will be starting his final year at infant school in a matter of months. Where does the time go?
But before I have to deal with those emotions, there’s a more pressing problem: remembering to buy my sons’ teachers a gift at the end of term.
Certainly at infant and junior school level, every child seems to turn up at school on the final day of the summer term, clutching a beautifully wrapped gift. Teachers suddenly become expert jugglers as their arms are piled high with flowers, boxes and bottle shaped gifts.
Woe betide any teacher who has just started a diet, or for that matter, suffers from hay fever.
At the end of the final term, it’s a lovely gesture to thank the teacher for putting up with your little darlings all year and I’m sure that teachers appreciate the thought.
However, while they might not say anything, I’m sure they’d be even more grateful for a change from the usual coffee creams or tropical bath foam.
I have to admit that the end of year seems to sneak up on me and I usually find myself frantically rushing round the supermarket a couple of days before the last day, looking for something different. But inevitably, I end up with either chocolates or body wash.
So this year, I’m trying to be a bit more organised. With three weeks left until the end of term, I’ve already started thinking of a few ideas that I decided to share with you.
If you’re friendly with other mums in your child’s class, why not suggest clubbing together to buy the teacher a gift voucher for a department store. That way they can buy something a little bit bigger that they really want.
An alternative idea, which works especially well for female teachers, is a voucher for a spa treatment. It might be just what they need to recover from a year of teaching.
You could always get them something useful. A nice pen will come in handy, for instance – you’ll just have to hope that the other parents from your child’s class aren’t reading this, or the teacher could end up with a full stationery set.
Alternatively, something for the classroom would be useful. For infant and nursery school teachers, what about a soft toy book character? Not only will your child love to give their teacher a cute, cuddly toy (assuming that they don’t want to keep it for themselves) but it can also be used as a teaching aid.
Character soft toys like Paddington Bear, Elmer the Elephant and The Hungry Caterpillar are great fun. And, in association with the book, can be used to illustrate a variety of educational lessons for years to come.
If you start thinking now, you’ll have time to do a bit of research. Take note of the style your child’s teacher prefers. If they have a female teacher, does she wear accessories and fashion jewellery or have her ears pierced? If it’s a man, does he use cufflinks?
Just be careful that you’re not too obvious or you could be mistaken for a stalker!
While a coffee mug with your child’s face on it may make a great gift for dads and grandparents, it’s probably a bit over the top for their teacher.
But what about something that shows the positive influence of their teaching skills? Ask your child to write a thank you note to their teacher in their own words, which you can frame. This can be especially effective if your child has shown real progress over the year.
If you're still not sure what to buy, we've some thank you balloons that will make a fun surprise - they're also very light for the teacher to carry. And if all else fails, our selection of Belgian chocolates are bound to be a welcome treat for the staff room.
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