It’s that time of year again. Time for school to be out , and time to say good bye to that favorite teacher. With 3 boys, I have bought many teacher gifts through the years. And as a teacher myself for the last 18 years, I have received many also. So, as a favor to those of you who do not teach…here’s a little helpful info: Do NOT give us another mug. We have mugs out the wazoo. We have mugs with every imaginable saying…for every season. We have mugs stuffed with yucky hard candy, individual packets of coffee or hot chocolate, or with a tea towel. We will NEVER need another mug…ever. We shop the dollar stores, too. So it is kind of insulting to us when you give us something we saw in the 1/2 off bin at the EVERYTHING’S a DOLLAR store. Yes, I know it is the thought that counts… but I hope I counted more than $.50 in your child’s life. We also have a plethora of note pads, cutesy pencils, and stationary with our initials. (But, I do like the stationary…I just have more than I can ever use.) And, I know how easy it is to run into Bath and Body and get a cute little gift pack already wrapped up and all, BUT…everyone has their own favorite fragrance and it just might not be Tangy Orange Blueberry Sizzle! Oh, and those cutesy teacher pins and necklaces….we do not enjoy these. They are NOT cute.
Now, here is a list of things that any teacher would be proud to be presented with: a picnic in a box…one year I was presented with an inexpensive tote filled with cute paper plate, napkins, cups, utensils, tablecloth , a selection of soft drinks, and a gift certificate to KFC. I loved it! This year a group of 3 children gave me a momogrammed jewelry and ring holder shaped like a hand. Very useful! Hanging plants or dish gardens are always nice, too. All the hard work is done, all I have to add is water. And I got a set of note pads monogrammed with ‘A NOTE FROM MRS. OWENS….these have been very helpful. My favorite though are the gift cards. This year I got them to several restaurants in town like Sonic, Chick-Fil-A, Olive Garden. Outback. I also got one to Wal-mart, and one to Atlanta Bread . In recent years, I have gotten them for Lifeway and Books A Million. These are the ones I have enjoyed the most! Since I love to read and summer is the time I am most able to.
There is 1 family in our school who does the neatest thing for me each year. They have 2 children and they have both gone through 3 years with us. Each year, the Mom has the child write a personal note telling why they liked that teacher. She copies( before they can write) exactly what they say. This is a treasured surprise every year. Hope this helps when you start that gift buying this year.

I’d like to document 2 of those sweet letter from the Smith children.
From CAROLINE: “You teach us songs. You make us be in programs. I love you because you love me and you teach us. When we had the last program, you laid sheep out for us to hold if we needed to and we sat down when the program was over and you told us how good we sang and we practised a fun song. You brought a little finger puppet sheep and you made music fun.”

From SPENCER:”Mrs. Owens, you’re the best music teacher ever! We love you, Mrs. Owens. Everybody loves you. You’re funny and kind. You are the best music teacher in the whole wide world! You are a good music player. You pick out good songs. Everybody loves you. Thank you for doing everything for us.”

Now, if that doesn’t melt the heart of a teacher…I don’t know what will.