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Giving “thanks,” compliments, or gifts to teachers is such a wonderful thing! Compliments and gifts provide teachers the recognition and value that they deserve after a long quarter, trimester, semester, or year of teaching your child. However, as a special educator, I have noticed a trend in compliments and gift-giving over the years. Many special educators are not acknowledged as much as a general education teacher. In some cases, special educators may be forgotten!
Like any teacher, special educators put in a great deal of time, effort, and patience when working with the students on their caseloads. Special educators work hard to build rapport with their students and create individualized plans to meet the needs of each one. It is understandable that special education teachers do not teach for the recognition. However, it is incredibly important to acknowledge your special educators and let them know that everything they do is important!
Need Ideas to THANK Your SPED Teacher?? Here is a list of great ideas your SPED teacher would appreciate:
The Serious Gifts
Thank you cards: A note with words of appreciation go a long way. SPED teachers are able to take each card or note and here your “thanks” through each word. One of the best gifts I ever received was at the end of my first year teaching. It was a simple thank you card from a parent of a student in my Special Day Class. The card explained how appreciative she was of all the hard work I put in to teaching her child. But the last line stuck with me forever. It read, “You changed my child’s life forever”. I still have the card to this day and I keep in contact with the family.
Personalized gifts: Giving your teacher a gift with a special personalized message on it can be heart-warming for a sped teacher. It shows the teacher that you thought about them, went out of your way to get them a token of appreciation that you want them to keep forever. I can tell you from experience, anything personalized I have kept forever! Click on the pictures to find out where you can buy them!
Flowers: No matter if they are real, fake, or picked from your garden, flowers are a beautiful way of showing someone appreciation. A sped teacher’s nature is caring and beautiful, just like flowers. You can never go wrong with flowers.
The Helpful Gifts
Classroom Items: Donations of any classroom supplies is ALWAYS appreciated, especially in special education! Special education and Resource Center classrooms are often a place many students come to. Imagine a revolving door of students in and out. These students use the pencils, glue, scissors, paper, etc., (not to mention all of the materials that get broken or over-used throughout the year). Lots of the supplies are purchased through the teacher’s personal budget: Tape, Scissors, Glue, Glue Sticks, Staplers, Paperclips, Dry-Erase Markers, Pencils, Hole-Punch, etc. Anything given to a teacher for the classroom is wonderful!
Gift Cards: Gift cards can feel so impersonal sometimes. However, gift cards for something specific such as teacher stores like Teachers Pay Teachers (Check out my TPT Store HERE), Amazon, or any other place teachers can purchase supplies, would be a wonderfully helpful gift to provide your sped teacher. It was very helpful when a parent gave me a gift card for Amazon since I purchase all kind of fidgets, alternative seating, and positive behavior incentives online.
Volunteered Time: A gift that costs you nothing but your personal time, volunteering! As long as you are cleared by your school district to be a volunteer, you can volunteer as much as you can in your SPED teacher’s classroom. Nothing shows that you care and appreciate your sped teacher more than volunteering and helping out in their classrooms. In my class, I always take as much help as I can get. It is always a team effort in a sped or resource classroom. When more members of the team are there, the more help you have available! We love volunteers!
The Funny Gifts
If you have a humorous working relationship with your SPED teacher, you may be interested in giving them a “funny” gift. Personally, I love humorous gifts! Since there are no words to describe this, below are a few of my favorites!
**Be sure to THANK and APPRECIATE your SPED TEACHERS!**
Need SPED resources and curriculum?? Check out my Teachers Pay Teachers store by clicking here: Resources From Rachel