Teacher Appreciation Week, which also incorporates National Teacher Day, is a week-long celebration that honors and celebrates teachers for the contributions they make to education. It offers students, families, and administrators an opportunity to show their appreciation and gratitude for the things they do for their students.
Teacher Appreciation Week is celebrated the first full week of May each year. And in case you’re wondering, Teacher Appreciation Day is celebrated on the Tuesday of Teacher Appreciation Week.
In 2020, Teacher Appreciation Week was celebrated May 4th – 8th, with Teacher Appreciation Day on May 5th.
In 2021, Teacher Appreciation Week will fall May 3rd – May 7th, with Teacher Appreciation Day on May 4th.
This year’s Teacher Appreciation Week is probably more well-deserved than ever before. With families now at the center of their child’s learning at home, the respect for what teachers do every day is at an all-time high. Parents and families across the globe have humorously expressed their new respect for teachers on social media:
At some point this school year, most teachers showed up to school with no idea that it would be their last day physically in-class together with their students. And their response to that was extraordinary. Ken Buck’s social media post said it best:
Teachers flipped learning overnight with no playbook to go off of, and they are feeling just as much stress as everyone else. Teachers deserve our appreciation now more than ever before. But with schools closed and most of the country in quarantine due to the Coronavirus pandemic, this year proves a little more difficult to celebrate Teacher Appreciation Week. With teachers at home, rather than in their classrooms, it’s not as easy to deliver tokens of appreciation. In fact, if your mind immediately just went to mailing them something, remember that most teachers probably aren’t comfortable giving out their home address.
This year, Teacher Appreciation Week will look a little different due to the Coronavirus quarantines and school closures. Below are some ideas to show your appreciation.
This one might take some planning and coordination, and it’s also kind of our favorite, so we’ve put it first to give you some time to plan. Since the beginning of the school closures, schools have coordinated efforts among their teachers to make photo collage messages for their students like this one posted by Briarmeadow Charter School:
This would be a clever idea to duplicate. It could even be as simple as teaming up with four other families and their children to create a short message like “Thank-You-To-Our-Teachers.” But, the more the merrier!
If teachers aren’t in their classrooms, a physical card likely won’t work. However, it’s still possible to send them a digital card or e-card while in quarantine! There are a variety of websites that you can use to send a digital card or video to your child’s teacher.
One option is to use Canva. Their easy-to-use site allows you to design your own thank you cards or choose from a variety of templates. You can check out Canva’s Thank You Card Hub to explore all of their options.
Another option you can explore is Hallmark’s Teacher Appreciation Day cards. If you’re looking for a premade option that you can just purchase and send, they have a number of e-card options to choose from.
With everyone at home in quarantine, creating home-videos has really taken off. This opens a creative, personal way to show your appreciation to teachers. You can even turn it into the next home learning project for your child: have them write a script, record the video, edit it with a free video editing app or program, and publish it online for their teacher to see.
If you don’t have the means, or if you’re are a little camera-shy, creating a voice recording to say thank you is just as meaningful. Letting teachers hear their student’s voice is a very personal way to thank them for all of their hard work.
Even though you can’t physically mail it or send it with your child to take to their teacher, you can certainty scan or upload a picture of it! Have your child draw, write, color, or paint a thank you and send it to their inbox! If your teacher is on Livingtree Engage, use the inbox feature and send it as a direct message.
Gift cards are certainty still an option, especially since most are available to send via email. Here are a few great options to consider:
Teachers can always use Amazon gift cards, whether it be for school supplies, home goods, groceries, or a movie night on Amazon Video.
Speaking of movie nights, a $10 gift card to Netflix or Hulu could mean a month of movie nights at home, or binge-watching an addicting show.
Purchase them a gift card to the local grocery store in your community. Taking care of the essentials is always appreciated, especially during difficult times.
Purchasing them a gift card for a food or grocery delivery service is the perfect quarantine gift. A gift card to a grocery delivery service like Instacart enables your teacher to receive groceries while staying safe and healthy at home. Gift cards for food delivery services like Uber Eats, Doordash, Favor, and Postmates also make great meal gifts, and support your local delivery workers and restaurants.
Gift cards to local places help support your community during these difficult times, and make a great gift that teachers will appreciate.
Many teachers fundraise online for classroom supplies and projects. Sometimes funding requests for their projects and ideas are also posted and made available online as grants through their education foundations. Either way, if your child’s teacher has a fundraising project on an online school fundraising site like Livingtree Give, consider supporting it. A small donation, or even just sharing it out on social media can be a big help.
Since we can’t show up this year and personally express our appreciation, or physically present teachers with a token of gratitude, it’s important to truly communicate how much their work means. It’s important to provide teachers with recognition of how amazing they are, how much they are appreciated, and tell them the stories and examples of how they’ve made a difference.
Teachers not only want to hear this from current students, but also their families, administrators, and even former students.
As challenging as you may find it to educate your child, just remember, teachers CHOOSE to do it day in and day out. Not for the money, and definitely not for the hours, but for the special opportunity to make a difference and move a child towards a successful future.
We hope this inspires you with a great idea for thanking a teacher during Teacher Appreciation Week. And to all teachers around the world, all of us here at Livingtree give you our biggest THANK YOU!
Are you a school or district leader looking to better connect families with their child’s teacher and school? Schools can benefit from a unified platform that enhances teacher-family communication, especially during remote learning. Download our free guide for engaging families through technology, or visit the Livingtree Engage platform page.