Back to school season is right around the corner. Help your kids kick off a new year on the right note with thoughtful tokens for their teachers. Appreciation gifts are a great way to break the ice and show teachers their hard work is worthwhile.
From practical office décor to personal indulgences, these DIY teacher appreciation gifts are quick, easy, and totally adorable. And to continue the fun, check out these ideas for back to school traditions that will have kids excited for fall
1. Washi tape sticky note pads
Sticky notes are an organizational must-have for everyone, especially teachers. Give them pads that are both practical and pretty by decorating them with versatile washi tape. This easy project is fun for kids and takes less than five minutes per pad.
- Sticky note pads
- Washi tape
- Thick black pen
- Begin by covering the back of your sticky note pad. Adhere strips of washi tape horizontally, lining them up or overlapping them a bit until the entire back is covered. Once a row is done simply tear the tape, leaving extra on both ends.
- Once the back is covered, cut away the extra bits (it’s easier to do this with the front side of the pad facing up). Depending on the tape, you might want to add another layer so no words show through on the bottom of the pad.
- Add a single strip of tape along the top on the front of the pad, again trimming off extra bits and using two layers if you like. (This adds a bit of decoration to your teacher’s first note. Be sure to not fold over your washi tape, though, as this will make it so the sticky note pad can’t be opened!)
- If you want, add a note to your teacher using a permanent marker.
2. Crayon pencil vase
Source: A Pumpkin and a Princess
It’s super easy to use double-sided tape to cover an old tin jar in crayons. Finish it off with twine and alphabet ribbon, then fill it with pencils.
3. Apple jars
Source: The 36th Avenue
A coat of paint transforms a mason jar into an apple-like container that’s perfect for fall. Top it off with a cardstock leaf and wooden peg stem, then fill with anything from candy to office supplies.
4. Alphabet bouquet
Source: One Charming Party
A simple bouquet is a winning gift, and when filled with plastic alphabet letters it’s especially teacher-appropriate. To make one, place plastic letters in a glass jar, then add flowers in a small cup inside.
5. Art teacher necklace
Source: A Beautiful Mess
This necklace gets its name from a funky aesthetic, but it’s also a perfect gift for an art teacher — or any teacher. Decorating and stringing the jumbo beads is a perfect activity for little fingers.
6. USB drive
Source: Mad in Crafts
This adorable printable turns a USB drive into a practical gift. Make the apple tag using the linked wood dyeing tutorial, and add the free printable card for a gift that’s both charming and useful.
7. Apple hoop art
Source: Live Laugh Rowe
These pretty apple hangings are a cinch to make. Just stretch red fabric in an embroidery hoop, add felt leaves, and use cord to hang them up.
8. Colored pencil coaster
Source: Crafts Unleashed
Make a bright and cheerful place for a teacher to keep their much-needed coffee. When making this coaster, adults will need to cut the pencils into small pieces, but kids can help glue them to a cork base.
9. Alphabet stamp set
Source: The Casual Craftlete
This super easy gift turns a store-bought alphabet stamp set into something special. Simply put the stamps in a decorated mason jar with a little stamped note, and you’re good to go.
10. Glitter scissors
Source: Persia Lou
Spruce up a teacher’s collection of office supplies by covering scissor handles in glitter. Finish it off with the free printable note.
11. Duct tape bookmark
Source: Uncommon Designs
You can make these cheerful bookmarks out of duct tape. Since this inexpensive tape comes in a wide array of colors and patterns, the design possibilities are endless.
12. Craft stick planter
Source: Mad in Crafts
Every desk could use a bit more color — and a low-maintenance plant. To make this cheerful décor, glue colored craft sticks around a succulent pot, then adhere a watering can silhouette.
13. Chocolate chalkboards
Source: Lindsay Ann Bakes
These mini chalkboards are an adorable way to show your appreciation — and are actually just chocolate, powdered sugar, caramel candies, and sprinkles. Scratch messages into chocolate using toothpicks, then fill in the marks with powdered sugar for a super fun and delicious way to say thanks.
14. Personalized notepad tote
Source: Handmade Mood
Give them something for hauling all those books and office supplies. Embroider a plain white tote to look like notepad paper, then stitch or write your teacher’s name.
15. Teacher’s essentials kit
Source: Hi Sugarplum!
Teachers will appreciate the thoughtfulness of a truly useful gift. To make this kit, fill a bead organizer with essential office supplies, including erasers, paper clips, tape, and pushpins, then decorate the top with pretty patterned paper.
16. Straw pouches
Source: Design Eat Repeat
Turn yellow straws into faux pencils by adding paper tips and erasers. Combine them with a drink mix, stick them in mason jars, and add eraser labels for a cute gift. You may want to remember this one for the end of the year and pair it with lemonade to celebrate summer!
These sweet gifts are a win-win: They’re fun for kids to put together and will brighten their teacher’s day. So take advantage of the remaining days of summer and use them to show some appreciation and get excited for the upcoming school year.