The end of the school year is a lot like the holiday season for crafty moms, since there are tons of teacher gifts to make and give. I'm a huge fan of incorporating the kids into class gifts (when appropriate), so anything with handprints or thumbprints get my attention. I also love making personalized gifts for teachers, so something I can embroider or use fabric paint also are on my go-to list.

Here are a few quick gift ideas suitable for the teachers you want to thank:

• Trace around the kids' hands and use the outline to make hands from fabric and a fusible adhesive like Heat N Bond. Write each child's name on his/her hand or let the kids do it with a permanent fabric marking pen. Follow the manufacturers' directions to adhere to a tote bag, then outline the edges with fabric paint (the non puffy variety). Add the teacher's name with fabric paint to finish.

• Use scrapbook paper and letter stickers personalize a travel mug with a customizable insert. Just trace the included template on the scrapbook paper, decorate and reassemble. Your child could also draw a picture to insert instead. If you have an embroidery machine, use it and some fabric to make the insert.

• A ready-made apron is easy to personalize with iron-on letters, fabric paint or an embroidery machine.

• Make a coffee shop cup wrap (this tutorial looks cute) and slip it over an empty cup. Stick a gift card inside to complete it.

• Edible gifts are always a hit. You can make a bouquet of Cake Pops (tutorial here) and "plant" them in a flower pot, or fill a pretty tin with cookies, brownies, muffins or cupcakes. If you're a little more industrious, use some seasonal fruit to make homemade preserves.

What are your favorite teacher gifts to make or give?

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Comment by Karen Lisa on June 3, 2010 at 2:11pm
I think a small plant is a nice gift! Maybe a lucky bamboo plant or one of those little succulents you can get at the garden shop. They aren't expensive but are a gift that your teacher will enjoy for a long time and will always think fondly (hopefully) of your child each time they take care of it. Plus, it's good for the environment!

Comment by Lesley P on June 3, 2010 at 8:01am
My daughter just started making her teacher cards, plus cards for her dance teachers.
If you are short on time & decide to buy a gift, checkout our eBillme blog post on Teacher Gifts.
Comment by Dawn on June 2, 2010 at 4:07am
Great suggestions - I love the Cake Pops!
Comment by Mary on May 29, 2010 at 2:11pm
I love the idea of giving the Sigg bottles. Definitely a fan of useful vs. dust magnet.
Comment by Lesley P on May 27, 2010 at 11:53am
These are great ideas - thanks so much.
I especially love the food.

I do have a friend who is a teacher & she loves the handmade personal gifts. But be sure to avoid the "nick-nacks" .. like the ceramic apple with # 1 teacher. If the teacher has been teaching a few years -- they have WAY too many of these.

I also give some teachers Wine & last year we gave the Sigg Water Bottles (my daughter is in grade 4).

Cheers to all the great teachers - hope you have a great summer!




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