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The Best and Worst Teacher Gifts: 5 Top Tips

After a couple of years in school, a teacher has probably had it all when it comes to end of year gifts. Teachers are a major part of a child’s life, and it makes sense for kids to want to shower them with gifts that show what a great job they’ve been doing and just how much they’re appreciated.
While teachers never expect gifts and – as with any gift giving – it is definitely the thought that counts, it’s just plain fact that some gifts tend to go down better than others.
From the good to the bad to the just plain weird, we wanted the lowdown on teacher gifts from those who know best. We spoke to some real life teachers to teach us the do’s and don’ts of teacher gift giving, and have put together some top tips to help you find the perfect gift no matter your budget.

Tip #1: (Don’t) let them eat cake
We know, we know – who doesn’t love a cake or three?! We hate to be the bearers of bad news, but baked treats as gifts don’t go down quite as well with teachers as you might think. One teacher of a Year 2 class told us;
“the golden rule in teaching is never eat anything a child has made, which is awkward when it comes to gifts as mums love sending children with homemade cupcakes!” Just think about it – while you may find it adorable to gather up your brood and spend an afternoon baking treats for their fave teacher, when said teacher is faced with a truck load of baked goods from half a class of children, they may not quite share your glowing sentiment. Particularly with much younger kiddos who may be partial to the odd finger dip and taste test during the mixing process, baking can be messy and pretty unhygienic business. Teachers see kids day in and day out, and know better than anyone just how grimy they can get! Even if your kids are perfect little angels with freshly washed hands, hair nets and Mary Berry’s baking skills, there’s still a good chance the teacher will err on the side of caution and choose not to enjoy their wares. Stick to baking treats for their (equally messy) friends, and for a teacher opt for bought sweet treats with a long shelf life to ensure your gift is enjoyed to its full potential!

Tip #2: Teamwork makes the dream work
If you’re struggling to think of or find the perfect gift for your child’s favourite teacher, why not club together with some other mums and dads? Putting your money (and brains!) together will allow you to opt for something much more substantial and significant, plus the knowledge that parents have secretly got together to organise a surprise treat will bring an extra special touch. One primary school teacher told us; “The best gifts have been when there is a parent organised enough to get everyone to chuck in a few quid towards something”. Of course, there are a couple of guidelines to clubbing together for a gift. First and foremost, contribution should always be voluntary. Secondly, consider varying budgets and stick to something that is affordable for everyone – no parent should feel obliged or pressured into putting in for a bank-breaking gift!

Tip #3: Wine not?
A go-to gift for teachers is alcohol, and it’s not difficult to see why; it’s incredibly easy to pop a bottle in a gift bag, and you know it’s always going to go to good use. However, some teachers (particularly those who don’t drink very much) can quickly become snowed under with copious amounts of booze at the end of the school year and at Christmas. If you know a teacher, you’ve no doubt seen the amount of alcohol they have sitting around at home during end of term time (and if you don’t know a teacher, you should befriend one – they make exceptional party hosts at these times of year!).
So rather than the cliche bottle of bubbly, why not break the mold a little and treat them to alcohol related accessories? From hand painted wine glasses to allow them to enjoy their other gifts in true style to funky decorative ice stirrers, here at Flamingo Gifts we offer a whole host of options that any teacher is sure to love! For an extra special teacher, or if you’re clubbing together with other parents à la Tip #2, why not treat them to a luxury bath caddy? With a space to put a glass of wine and a book or iPad, this ultimate bath accessory will allow them to relax and unwind to their heart’s content – and you know after a long day with 30 kids, they definitely deserve it!

Our Name Is Mud Thank You Wine Glass
Paladone Pink Flamingo Ice Stirrers
Umbra Aquala Bathtub Caddy

Tip #4: Speak from the heart
It’s not all about how much money you spend, and you definitely shouldn’t feel pressured into spending more than you can afford on a teacher’s gift. A teacher loves feeling appreciated, so a heartfelt greetings card, homemade gift or a drawn picture has a wonderful and sweet sentiment that will definitely make an impression. Get crafty with your kids and help them create something that speaks from the heart. You can explore a selection of children’s stationary at Flamingo Gifts to help your little ones get creative – the thought really does count here! BUT – keep it appropriate! Personal gifts are great, but avoid getting too personal. Teachers have spoken of receiving underwear from parents (yes, really!) which we’re sure caused some awkwardness at parents evening! Overly personal gifts related to your children are also a no-go – while it’s lovely to be given a gift with meaning, a teacher may not appreciate a framed picture of your child (it happens!). One primary school teacher told us of an overly personal gift that, while given with the best intentions, didn’t go down quite as intended; “I once got a biscuit tin with a voice recording from a child that I did NOT enjoy. It spoke a high pitched squeal every time I went for a biscuit… Those biscuits were never eaten!”.

Tip #5: Dare to be different
The key thing to consider when buying a gift for a teacher is have they been given this before? There’s only so many keyrings, mousemats and teacher mugs one person can use – while the sentiment is there and the teacher no doubt loves the gift, they can’t use them all at once! Try and find something that every other kid won’t be buying; something memorable and unique that will stand out from the crowd. If you’re looking for the perfect unique gift, you’re in luck – Flamingo gifts offer an extensive selection of quirky gifts for teachers from favourite brands such as Sass & Belle and Happy Jackson. Here’s just a small selection of our favourites:

Paladone Pug In A Mug Silicone Tea Infuser
F In Retakes Book: Even More Test Paper Blunders
Happy Jackson Here’s The Plan Notebook

Sass & Belle Marbled Planter
Sass & Belle Wire Mesh Round Copper Basket
Sass & Belle Pastel Button Coasters

For a further selection of unique and quirky gifts for any occasion, be sure to explore the full Flamingo Gifts range. From home and garden accessories and kitchen accessories to beauty gifts, you can discover the perfect treat to bring a smile to anyone’s face.

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