Gifts for teachers.

Do you do them or not?

gifts for teachers, the norm or not - Bubbablueandme

The last day of term before Christmas I spotted children going into school with gifts, and with horror realised that it hadn’t even occurred to me to sort a gift out.  We weren’t totally rubbish.  N did do cards.

I know in the past I’ve discussed it with other mums as the children left their nurseries to go to school.  Lots did do gifts.  We didn’t.

I debated doing chocolates or making something.  But at his day nursery that would have needed to cover a lot of people who’d looked after N while he was there, and he’d likely be going back there to do some holiday clubs.  His nursery school he was leaving nursery, but would be going back to after school club there.

School’s a bit different.  We’re not directly paying for him to go there unlike nurseries.  There’s only (probably) 2 people, a teacher and teaching assistant to give gifts to.

When we were at school, it would have been extremely rare for children to take in gifts.  Even when I left primary school I don’t recall having taken a gift in.  Nowadays it seems to be more the norm.

I remember being at a teacher friend’s house when she opened the cupboard with all the previous Christmas and end of term gifts she’d been given.  Even months later, full of biscuits, chocolates, wine, photo frames, plants and more.  Most of which she would never get through.  Most people want to declutter and have less stuff, not 30 odd gifts that won’t get used or eaten.

I think if N wanted to take a gift then we’d have to do something handmade and small.  Maybe some fudge, biscotti, or a little decorated box of seeds.

The alternative is to give something back to the teacher for their class.  Last year I spotted people giving a creatively made up bundle of pens and stationery which I thought would be a good idea, especially for a preschool.

I’m still not that comfortable about giving presents to teachers.  Now there are teaching assistants to think about too, and morning club supervisors, after school club.  The list goes on.  I think if a teacher has done something to really solve a problem going on with N, or really been an inspiration etc, that’s where I’d be more comfortable in giving a small gift to say thank you, but not for Christmas.  For that, I think a card suffices.

Maybe schools should have a little tip box like at the newsagents or hairdressers, and everyone gets a cut, or that goes towards their christmas night out.

Do your children give presents to their teachers for Christmas? Is it the norm in your schools? What kind of things do they give?

10 Comments

  1. As a teaching assistant I can say that personally it’s really not necessary although will always be appreciated.

    For me personally all I like to see is a card they’ve written themselves as that shows that my hard work helping them with their handwriting and spelling is going to wonderful use

  2. My friend is a teacher and I think they all really need gifts, they work hard !

  3. Teachers deserve a gift, and as parents we should remember how much they do for our little ones and recognize that, loved this…i really have not seen that it is the norm but that does not keep us from doing it

  4. whatlauraloves

    I’m 27 and as far as I can remember, we didn’t give gifts to teachers at school. I’m not sure if I would do it with my own kids. Perhaps a card? xxx

  5. It was normal when I was at school. I did it every year. I remember one of my teachers were a vegan so mum and I struggled as I’d normally just get chocolates. I believe we ended up finding Vegan chocolate for him.

  6. When I was at school I always used to give my teacher a present as a little thank you. I think people are 50/50 on this issue so there’s no need to give one if you don’t feel it’s appropriate!

  7. I’m a secondary school teacher working in a multicultural comprehensive school in London. Gifts at Christmas are rare as most students do not celebrate Christmas – I mostly receive presents at the end of the school year. Last June my Year 11 GCSE class bought me a hamper full of ‘teacher gifts’, 2 tickets for a trip on the London Eye and a 3 course meal at Gordon RAmsay’s restaurant and they also framed a photo of all of us 🙂 I was overwhelmed with their generosity and appreciation. I still have to go and I’m so looking forward to this treat. This isn’t the norm! I’m usually very happy with a ‘thank you’ 🙂 xx

  8. We give gifts but generally something the teacher can regift if they don’t need/want it – and steer clear of teacher tat! This year it was boxes of chocolates x

    • That makes sense. At ours, if people had given presents earlier, any regiftable ones could have gone into the charity Christmas hampers they raffled off…although we all gave for that anyway.

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