by Jennifer of The Life of Jennifer Dawn for See Vanessa Craft
As the school year draws to a close and summer looms before us, you may be looking for a way to show the special teacher or teachers in your child’s life some appreciation. As a former educator, I’ve been asked numerous times, “What are good gift ideas for teachers?” and “What do teachers like to receive?” Here is my personal answer to those questions…
I just wanted to know that the countless hours I spent away from my own children pouring into the lives of my students were valued. I loved the handmade cards that held beautiful words of appreciation. I wanted to know that my efforts had made a difference. Isn’t that what any teacher really wants? They set out to positively impact the lives of their students, and at the end of the year, they just want to know they were successful. A simple thank means everything! But words of thanks are hard to box up. With a little creativity, it can be done though.
One gift in particular still stand outs. It was a copy of Mrs. Spitzer’s Garden, a beautifully illustrated book that compares a teacher tending to her students to the care and love that goes into tending a garden of plants and blooms.
A sweet student gave me the book along with a handwritten note that read, “Thanks for helping me grow!” What the student said next meant more to me than any gift though. She tearfully whispered, “I just wanted you to know that I love you. I’ll never forget how you’ve helped me.” I’m crying just thinking back to those precious moments. Gifts from the heart are priceless. Whatever way you choose to show your appreciation, I’m sure it will be heartfelt and beautiful! This is just one idea inspired by a gift I received years ago…
Book Page Garden Kit Supplies:
old book pages
wooden craft sticks
1. Gather all of your materials. Use the circle punch to cut out circles from the book page scraps.
2. Apply the book page circles to the top rim of the terracotta pot with a sponge brush and generous coat of Mod Podge.
3. Allow the Mod Podge to dry completely.
4. Use the stamps and craft sticks to make garden markers.
5. For a more detailed tutorial on making stamped garden markers, you can visit here.
6. Tie up the garden markers with twine.
7. Add a little twine and even a label to the outside of your garden pot.
8. Place tissue paper, the garden markers, seek packets, and a card inside your terracotta pot.
Chalkboard Garden Kit Supplies:
wooden craft sticks
1. Use the sponge brush to paint the top rim of the terracotta pot. Apply 2-3 coats allowing each coat to dry before applying the next one.
2. Apply 2-3 coats of chalkboard paint to wooden craft sticks too. Tip: Grip one half of the craft stick and paint the other half. Once that half has dried, you can hold onto it to paint the rest of the stick.
3. When the paint has completely dried, rub a piece of chalk over both the painted part of the pot and the painted craft sticks. Rub the excess chalk off with a dry towel. Chalkboard paint is porous and this step primes and prepares the chalkboard portions to be written on. Write a message or words on the chalkboard portion of the pot. Write plant names on the chalkboard craft sticks to turn them into fun indoor garden markers.
4. Tie up your chalkboard garden markers with twine. Place them inside the pot along with some tissue paper, seek packets, card, or label.
Jennifer is a wife, mommy, and former teacher who left the classroom to stay home with her three little ones. She’s an avid crafter who loves to dapple in all things creative. Through blogging she’s found a way to share her love of craftiness and spread a little happiness. She blogs at The Life of Jennifer Dawn.