Giving thank you gifts for your high school teachers is one of life's underrated challenges. How are you supposed to cram four years of heartfelt gratitude into one material object? It is difficult to find the line between genuine thankfulness and generic schmaltz. Hopefully, the following list of potential teacher gifts will alleviate your fears and even spark some original ideas.
1. The classic homemade card.
Pros: Heartfelt and cost-effective.
Cons: Takes time and creative energy to look really special and it might feel a bit awkward to put into actual words what your teachers mean to you.
Top tip: If you don't consider yourself visually artistic, you can try writing a simple and funny limerick or haiku about your teacher's class for a minimalist and memorable front cover.
2. Baked goods.
Pros: A solid option that is easy and affordable. Also, you can bake in bulk and give a piece to each of your teachers for an easy and delicious solution to your gift problem!
Cons: Unless you're very skilled at personalised icing, baked goods might not have the personal touch your teacher deserves. Furthermore, your teacher might have dietary restrictions that you were not aware of, rendering your gift a waste.
Top tip: If you're an avid baker, you may have already given your teachers several edible gifts over the years and so your parting gift might not be given the gravitas it deserves.
3. A picture frame with a picture of your class in it.
Pros: A cute gesture to make sure your teacher doesn't forget your class.
Cons: This requires organization from your classmates and frames can be expensive, although this might pose less of a problem if you are splitting the cost between the members of the class.
4. A classy edition of a book you know they like.
Pros: This is a really genuine present they can keep and use, and you already know that they'll appreciate it.
Cons: This can be quite pricey, especially if you're looking at antique editions. Additionally, if your teacher is one of mathematics or science, their favorite book might not have as ornate or interesting editions as an English teacher's favorite book might.
5. Novelty mug.
Pros: Always a classic choice and has great capacity for everyday use.
Cons: If you misjudge your teacher's sense of humour, this gift may never leave their cupboard!
6. Tickets to a play or lecture related to their subject.
Pros: This would be a fantastic opportunity for you to really show your teacher how much you enjoy their subject, as well as providing them an experience they'll surely enjoy.
Cons: You would have to make sure to book their ticket well in advance to make certain that your teacher would be available on that date. Also, this gift might be expensive or even entirely unfeasible depending on where you live.
7. A simple knitted scarf.
Pros: Very easy to make and, depending on the weather around your high school, has the potential to be very useful.
Cons: Extremely time-consuming!
Top tip: If you don't have enough time to make the whole scarf by yourself, get a bunch of your classmates to knit rectangles that you can sew together. You can even sew the initials of each knitter on their respective rectangle for double the heartwarming effect!
8. Devise a short comedy skit between your classmates of a typical lesson with your teacher in which you all play parodies of yourselves.
Pros: Has the capacity to be absolutely hilarious and there is no way your teacher will forget your class any time soon!
Cons: Quite a time-consuming project. Additionally, you have to convince several of your classmates to get on board with it, and have to decide whether you want to make fun of your teacher or not.
Top tip: If your classmates aren't willing to put in the time and you can draw, consider making a short comic instead!
9. A video of all your classmates thanking your teacher.
Pros: Quite simple and easy to edit if you have a camera on your phone and access to iMovie or a similar video editor on your computer.
Cons: You have to make sure your whole class is happy to be filmed, as this gift loses its effect if a few students from the class are missing.
Although some of these gift ideas may seem like overly-ambitious projects, the life-lessons that we received from our most inspirational teachers are truly priceless and should be acknowledged. And, much like a high school education, the more thought that you put into a gift, the more valuable and long-lasting that gift will be.
Lead Image Credit: Wikimedia Commons