Still Agonizing Over What To Get Teachers for the Holidays? Money. Give Them Money.

No teacher will ask for cash (but it’s what they really want).

Paired image of a pop up card and child writing note to show ways to give cash to teachers

Let’s get the big teacher gifting disclaimers out of the way, shall we?

Teachers don’t expect gifts from families.

The absolute best gift is a note about what they mean to you or your child.

Teachers are grateful for your kindness and that you thought about them.

And more than any physical gift, teachers appreciate your support.


Whew. OK.

That being said, if you’re insistent about giving gifts to the teachers you care about this holiday season, there is one gift I can guarantee every teacher is happy to receive and will definitely put to good use: cash. (Gift cards are great too.)

Many teachers this holiday season could really use money to put toward bills, businesses, or situations that don’t accept gift cards.

Giving cash or a gift card frees up your favorite teacher to get what they’re really needing. I think a lot about a former teacher I knew who said the parking for her cancer treatment hospital was $12 per visit, even if she was just doing a quick pickup. How nice would it have been for her students to pool their money into a cash gift to cover her parking fees for the rest of her treatment?

It’s hard to know what teachers have been gifted in the past.

I personally don’t have many teacher mugs, but other teachers I know are loaded down with entire cabinets full. On the other hand, I had a ton of little literature-related figurines and tchotchkes gifted to me (that I love), but other teachers might hate that kind of thing.

You might not realize that certain gifts are unhelpful to teachers.

Some teachers might not want to receive food or beverage gifts because of allergies, dietary restrictions, or just preferences in taste. Some might not have use for the gift at all because of storage or space restrictions at their house.

It’s totally possible to make a cash or gift card feel personalized and special.

I understand feeling like cash might feel impersonal or tacky if you’re trying to communicate how much a special teacher means to you. These are some ways you can add in your own personal flair:

Consider a personalized gift card sleeve, like these mini stockings:

Photo of miniature stockings as gift card holders

Or these coffee cups:

Photo of coffee cup gift card holders

You can also pair money with a really cool card and heartfelt note:

Photo of pop-up snowflake card

Or have your child write a cute little poem with it:

Roses are red

Christmas is upon us

Thanks for all you do

Your next coffee’s on us!

Or if you have the patience and skill, folding it into something cool:

Money origami examples from Homemade Gifts Made Easy

Source: Homemade Gifts Made Easy

Again, if you feel like you have to give a physical gift, no teacher will turn up their nose at your thoughtfulness. (But if you’ve ever wanted to give cash and needed a nudge of permission from a teacher, let us be that for you.)

What do you think about cash gifts for teachers? Let us know in the comments.

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