We love our teachers!

National Teacher Day 2013

“The art of teaching is the art of assisting discovery,” said Mark Van Doren.

Today is National Teacher Day, and this week marks National Teacher Appreciation Week. Let’s all take time to honor our teachers and show them that they have made a difference in our lives.

For crafters and older children, I’d like to share some beautiful, fun, creative gifts to give to teachers. Tip Junkie has compiled two awesome lists: “24 Teacher Appreciation Gifts” and “32 Beautiful Teacher Appreciation Thank You Gifts” (some with free printables), on everything from a jar of appreciation and door decorations to candy lei and apple Rice Krispie treats.

For children of all ages and younger children especially, here are 7 simple, inexpensive ways that children can show their teachers how important they are, individually or as a class:

1. Write a heartfelt thank you note. Make it more meaningful by adding something specific the teacher has said or done to inspire your child, advises Karen Bantuveris on Cozi.com.

2. Write an acrostic poem. Children can spell out their teacher’s name and write a poem about them.

3. Give a bouquet of flowers. Whether you made tissue paper flowers or pick real flowers from your garden, children can make their bouquet fun by adding a self-portrait. There’s a nice picture of a bouquet and wooden spoon people at PiggyGiggles.com.

4. Make a box of love notes. Choose a small box and cute notepaper to fit the box. Children can decorate each paper with a short note or message, from every child in the class, suggests the CurlyBirds blog.

5. Create a feel-good flipbook. Give each student a blank card and ask them to decorate it with notes, artwork, or photos, suggests Spoonful.com. The cards can be bound together with book rings and presented on a stand, so teachers can keep it on their desk year-round.

6. Compile a classroom gratitude book. Buy an inexpensive autograph book, and ask students (and parents too) to write a note to their teacher, along with a picture or photo, suggests PTOToday.com.

7. Plant a tree. With support from parents and the school principal, plant a tree at the school in honor of the teachers. Students can watch it grow every year, recommends Baudville.com (there are 59 other suggestions in their free PDF “Teacher Appreciation Ideas eBook”).

Even if it’s been years since you’ve been in a classroom, it’s never too late to write a letter to our favorite teacher, telling them how much we admire them and how they changed our life.

What teachers have inspired you? If you’re a teacher, what is the best gift that you have received?

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