A+ ideas to celebrate teachers this year

Alyssa Evans is an IXL Professional Learning Specialist with experience as a middle and high school teacher.

The 2020-21 school year has required teachers to tackle a unique set of challenges. In spite of everything, teachers have continued to do amazing work to educate and nurture relationships with their students. 

Whether your child is attending school virtually, in person, or a hybrid of the two, Teacher Appreciation Week (May 3-7) is a wonderful opportunity to let the educators in your child’s life know just how much they’ve meant to your student and your family.

There are many different ways to show that you care. Here are a few ideas to try this year! 

Send a special message

One of the most heartwarming things you can do is remind your child’s teacher of the positive impact they’ve had on their students. If you and your child work together to create a special shoutout, it will be extremely meaningful. And since the message can take many forms, it’s a great opportunity to let your child’s creativity shine! Here are a few ideas:

  • Take a video of your child responding to the prompt “Thank you for ___”.
  • Share photos of the schoolwork that your child is most proud of, and include a note explaining how their teacher supported them.
  • Have your child write a story about their favorite memory from this year.
  • Ask your child to share words that describe their teacher, and turn them into a fun word cloud.
  • Write about the growth you’ve noticed in your child over the past year, and have them share how their teacher helped them get there.

And if you’re comfortable, you can even share the message as a shoutout on social media. You can request to tag the teacher and even the school to make sure they see it!


Fuel your teacher

Teachers are extremely busy, and they don’t always have time to meal prep or step out for food during the day. To help an educator stay energized, you can buy them a gift card to a food delivery service, so they can have their favorite meal delivered to them! 

If your child is attending school in person, you can also have them bring in their teacher’s favorite snack or treat. 

Bonus tip: teachers often love a good theme. Here are a few ideas to incorporate a fun food-related pun into your gratitude:

  • “You’ve made lemonade out of lemons” (with fresh squeezed lemonade or lemon bars)
  • “Words can not espresso how great you are” (with the teacher’s favorite coffee or a giftcard to a local coffee shop)
  • “Thanks a choco-lot” (the educator’s favorite sweet treat)

Virtual fun

If your child is attending school virtually, you can create a fun virtual background that the teacher will love. The image could incorporate one of the teacher’s interests, or it could be a simple “thank you”! 

When the teacher notices the background, your child can wish them a “Happy Teacher Appreciation Week”! For an added touch, reach out to the other families in your child’s class, and ask them to use the background as well. 

Want even more inspiration? Check out these additional ideas that are social-distance friendly. Plus, there are fun recipes, crafts, and more on the IXL Teacher Appreciation Pinterest board.