Most Requested End of Year Teacher Appreciation Gifts, by Teachers (& What to Avoid)!
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Shop these teacher appreciation gifts that actual teachers recommended!
We sure love our teachers! ❤️
Don’t buy any other teacher gifts other than these ideas! Coming from actual teachers, trust us when we say these ideas are all they really want this year.
Teacher Appreciation Week is Monday, May 2 to Friday, May 6, 2022!
From most requested, these are the best teacher gifts to buy for today’s modern teachers:
1. Gifts cards so they can treat themselves to something they really want.
Teachers deserve to treat themselves to something special after a long, exhausting year in the classroom. After hearing from hundreds of teachers, it was clear gift cards were the top most requested gift idea they’ll never tire of receiving. Even just $5 to cover a coffee is such a special treat.
Want to go all out for your kiddo’s teacher?
Consider asking the entire class to participate in organizing one large gift card for their teacher as this Hip reader did:
“We’ve been doing one large gift card to Amazon. It’s so much easier for the teachers to load one card rather than 25 little ones onto their account and it feels like a bigger gift too.” – Chelsea, Hip reader
Need more ideas? Here are the top requested gift cards to consider for teacher gifts:
Hip Tip: Teachers…did you receive a gift card you’ll never use? Here’s how to turn gift cards into cash fast!
2. A hand-written card they can look back on.
We heard from hundreds of teachers across the country and of all the things they’ve kept over the years, the handwritten cards of appreciation are the ones they have always held onto above everything else.
As some teachers mentioned… “There are only so many trinkets you can hold onto”.
On rough days, it’ll be the perfect sentiment for them to look back on when they’re needing some words of encouragement. We know now more than ever teachers could use them. ❤️
Here’s what some of our Hip Teachers said:
“Special Education teacher here. I love to get a homemade card! Even a little flower they picked from the garden. We are often forgotten. A hug and a smile are always welcomed too!” – Roxanne, Hip2Save reader and teacher
“A thank you card! I love getting notes of affirmation from students and parents that are heartfelt. I don’t need things, just really hope for respect for what I do for others’ children!” – Ann, Hip2Save reader and teacher
“Gift cards are always nice, but a handmade card from your student will always take the cake! I have every card/note/picture my students have given me in a box in my classroom…they’re nice reminders on tough school days.” – Bailee, Hip2Save reader and teacher
“For those with tiny or no budgets for teacher gifts, I can honestly tell you, a sincere note of appreciation, especially if you can be specific about something the teacher did, is way more meaningful than any gift.” – Anne, Hip2Save reader and teacher
Hip Tip: Send a handwritten card for FREE with Hallmark Sign and Send.
3. A hot meal since they never get to eat lunch out.
Teachers take their lunch to school nearly every single day of the year with zero days to treat themselves to lunch at their favorite spot. One of the most requested teacher gifts (by teachers themselves) was simply a fresh hot meal!
Whether it’s a gift card to a meal delivery service or you’re having it delivered right to their classroom, this is one teacher appreciation gift idea that will surely be appreciated by anyone. Just be sure to find out what their favorite food is and whether they have any dietary restrictions so your generous gift won’t go to waste!
4. Flair pens, and Flair pens only.
Papermate Flair Pens – $11.94+
If you’re unsure what a teacher’s love language is, it’s Flair pens (and Flair pens only). 😂 According to numerous teachers across the country, gift a pack of Papermate Flair pens and they’ll be thrilled with this top-requested school supply. If you know, you know. 😉
Since we’re pretty Hip around here, I took it one step further to make this affordable gift even better with a cute card to go with them! If you have a Cricut Joy you can easily print my card to complete this easy teacher gift idea.
Don’t have a Cricut? No problem, my friend! I also created a free downloadable gift tag you can print right at home. It doesn’t get any easier than that!
5. A gift basket filled with goodies.
The Original Hotpop Popcorn Maker – $10.19 (regularly $11.99)
While popcorn wasn’t a specific item that teachers requested, many of them commented about how much they loved thoughtful apprecation gift baskets with treats and foods they’ll actually enjoy.
Even better, to create our popcorn gift basket idea, all you need is our favorite collapsible silicone popcorn maker, some kernels, a drink, and a little note to tie your vision together! 🤩 It’s the gift that will keep on giving for years to come! 🙌🏻
Read our full review on this collapsible Hotpop Popcorn Maker.
As another idea, check out this s’mores gift basket idea from our Hip reader:
“Include stuff for s’mores, telescoping roasting forks, fire flame colors, s’mores themed towel, etc. with a card that reads ‘Wish I had s’more time with you, but I’m off to ____ grade or but it’s time to enjoy summer!’ They’re the perfect teacher gifts for summer!” – Sarah, Hip2Save reader
Hip Tip: Is your teacher following a keto lifestyle? Head to our sister site, Hip2Keto, to read about our favorite keto chocolate!
6. A beautiful plant they can keep in their classroom or take home.
Costa Farms Potted Plants on Amazon – $16.34+
Our amazing teachers help our children grow every day and showing your appreciation of their growth in the literal form will be a constant reminder of you and your kiddo’s gratitude.
With potted plants on Amazon starting under $20 shipped and our free printable below, these make for another affordable and easy teacher gifts idea! 😍
“One year I got my kiddo’s teachers tomato plants. They loved them and it wasn’t a momento they had to hang onto. They thought it was the perfect teacher’s gift because summer was here so they could grow and produce tomatoes.” – Tiff, Hip2Save reader
Want to make your own planter?
As another idea, Lina created this cute and easy ruler planter as a thoughtful teacher gifts idea. It’s minimal enough to go with any teacher’s classroom and will look perfect on their desk in the new school year. 🤩
Hip Tip: Save on succulents to gift with this inexpensive subscription!
7. A jar of mixed and matched pens was the most memorable gift a Special Education teacher ever received.
Well, if this idea doesn’t bring you to tears, I’m not sure what will. 😭 Some special education teachers mentioned they tend to be overlooked so let us not forget to remind them just how special they are too!
If you want to stock up your jar with the highest-rated crayons and pencils, I tested them all so you know just what to buy! Even better, this teacher gift idea could potentially be free if you already have a bunch of new pens and pencils lying around.
“I was a Special Ed teacher and the best teacher appreciation gift I ever received was a box of mismatched pens and pencils.” – Lynette, Hip2Save reader and teacher
8. A citronella candle they can enjoy outside all summer long.
- Or shop all the trendy and affordable citronella candles at Walmart!
If there’s one thing teachers plan on doing once summer break hits, it’s soaking up the outdoors and kicking back to relax. It’s no wonder a citronella candle is at the top of the list for great teacher gifts!
“Each year I always give a nice outdoor citronella candle with wishes for a wonderful summer. It’s inexpensive but I feel it’s useful and timely and sends a nice message about relaxing and enjoying summer break.” – Lori, Hip2Save reader
9. Air freshener to keep their classroom smelling fresh.
Mrs. Meyer’s Room Freshener – $4.96 (regularly $4.99)
There’s no denying when kiddos get to a certain age maintaining a fresh classroom can be a job in itself. 😬 While some may find air freshener to be a funny gift idea, it’s a pretty practical one too. Plus, it’s something teachers are sure to appreciate! 😉
While there’s an endless amount of options to choose from and so many possibilities for gifting, sticking to a safe and chemical-free product is what I’d recommend gifting to appeal to all teachers.
Hip Tip: Love Mrs. Meyer’s products? Find out how you can score over $50 in freebies from Grove Collaborative when you place your first order!
10. Just showing your teacher appreciation is enough.
While I know I said I listed these teacher gifts in order of most requested, this one actually trumps them all. After reading through hundreds of sweet teacher sentiments, it was very clear what teachers really want is to feel valued and appreciated. 🥺
So this is a reminder to think of the teachers your kiddo may only see once a week or if you can’t afford a gift at all…just say a special thanks before the last day of the school year and leave them with words that will resonate forever. ❤️
“Please remember the ‘specials’ teachers. A little thank you would be great – we may only see your child once a week but it’s nice to be remembered.” – Erin, Hip2Save reader and teacher
“We are all broken this year… any sign of appreciation is loved and gives us joy. Yard flowers in a pickle jar! A middle School Math Teacher. ❤️“ – Julia, Hip2Save reader and teacher
Wondering what NOT to buy your kiddo’s teachers?
Here’s a list of the top requested items they could live without:
- Body lotion
- ANYTHING that says “Best teacher” or “#1 Teacher”
- No more apples…unless it’s made by Apple 😆
Thanks for all you do, teachers! And we hope you enjoy the contents of this teacher appreciation gift list as well. 😉