Friday, June 14, 2013

Gift Kit: 1-2-3-Teach!

I'd think the 3 biggest bar nights of the year in the States are: St. Patrick's Day, Cinco de Mayo, and the day before spring commencement.  Unless you're in Michigan where you'd have to account for the day before Thanksgiving.  You could argue that they're giving thanks for the bartenders that care for them throughout the year, and that help them "remember" the recipe for the best Bloody Mary that they'll be making the next morning while splashing a bit into the stuffing.

I'm sure in the morning you actually look like Bloody Mary as well
Amongst these graduates opening their hung-over-from-college eyes, are several that will join the next wave of the people that helped get them there.  Yes, these wonderful, tolerant, generous, sweet, and currently enjoying the first summer break from the other side of the desk people are collecting their red pens and gearing up for the start of the new school year.  I have a great deal of respect for teachers; anyone who is willing to deal with a) small children, b) bratty tweens, and c) entitled and lazy teenagers is under appreciated within our society.  The last thing most young people do is want to learn, and a lot of what school teaches you is only understood later.  The ones that teach for the passion of learning and for the children are some of the most valuable shapers of society. </soapbox>
This is about how old I sound right now.  Next they'll be getting on my yard.  I'm so crotchety I didn't pay for the picture :P
For more about the state of education today, you can peruse Netflix's category with several documentaries on the subject that bring up problems from money to incentives to kids' behaviors.  Ok, really they're not all that bad, but there's always the one.... even in the "real world" there's alllllways the one.  Straight talk: teachers bring in a lot of their own stuff to help create the classroom environment to encourage learning and discovery of the world's secrets.  I'm sure that everyone has a teacher they remember from school.  A tall drink says they brought in their own stuff.

90% funded out of the generosity of their hearts and 100% reused for years

So, we're putting together a graduation gift kit for those awesome new teachers that will get some essentials for all levels and the flexibility to customize per grade level.  These are a few of the basics that will free up your new teach to get specifics based on curriculum.  Congrats new grads and welcome new teachers!

Elements of this gift kit:
+ Pens - black/blue/red  --  highly recommend going the crafty route with the clay covered pen tutorial from Creative in Chicago.  I made a few and use them all the time at work!
+ Sharpies - multiple colors for multiple reasons!  "All teachers need sharpies" - an old pro
+ Sticky notes - you can never have enough sticky notes.  Ever.  I got 2 because one had funny sayings on it and everyone needs a partial to do list on a sticky note.  You can usually find fun ones at Fred & Friends.
+ Journal - notes for the day and other teacherly commentary
+ Page Flags - mark places in the text book or other
+ Paper clips - get to gradin!
+ Desk Bin - for holding kit
+ Target Gift Card - the universal Teachers' Mart
&&& the most important & appreciated element: emergency chocolate

I got pretty much everything here from Target.  Because you get me going in the dollar bin section and there's no stopping me.  What's nice is that meant that I was able to assemble a lot of things that were essentials & not feel like breaking the bank with the gift card.

Other things that teachers <3
Pencils - if you're bored of mechanical ones, and you've got a green thumb check out Sprout
Dry erase markers
Apples/apple related things  (yessss easy birthday gifts) :)
Magnetic clips for their chalkboards
Badge holders
Watch - clip or wrist
Fun and indestructible bins of all sizes

If your teacher is mobile; I suggest getting a rolling cart or file cabinet cart to hold everything.  If you're really ambitious and the teacher knows he/she'd like a desk, check out some tutorials on nomadic furniture.  You yourself might learn a few tricks.  Education: the gift that keeps on giving.


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