Reasons to Shop for Holiday Gifts for Special Education Teachers
Acknowledge special education teachers with simple holiday gifts.
The end of the calendar year tends to be challenging for students, teachers and parents of exceptional children. The expectations are high on both sides and many times, parents get nervous and try to rush the process before year-end. An article I wrote for Piedmont Parent explains the reasons why parents might become frustrated this time of year.
Now is a good time to set aside differences and acknowledge the challenges and opportunities ahead.
The big payoff
Parents looking for changes in their child's plan, or even for more classroom interactions, could benefit by buying a gift or two. Now, I am not suggesting that you bribe the teacher, but that you offer a small token of appreciation, or maybe even a gift card, to make the situation more manageable. You can do that with a gift, and let's face it — everyone loves to get a gift.
High school teachers are especially needy this time of year. Sometimes, they get overlooked because our teenagers want us to steer clear of the high school property. These teachers are working hard to transition our children to the outside world after graduation; it’s important to acknowledge their efforts.
While we don't always agree with teachers’ ideas or lesson plans, we agree we want the best for our children.
Generic winter gifts such as candy bags can go a long way. If money is tight (whose isn't?), perhaps you could surprise the special education department with a couple dozen doughnuts one morning. Teachers love to get food and candy.
A gift card to a favorite restaurant, or even movie vouchers to the local theater, work well for quick gifts. For a male teacher, I once gave a couple car wash gift cards. He commented on what a great idea it was because he had not really ever been given a gift he could actually use. Score!
Steer clear of the coffee mugs and apple-themed items. I mean, seriously, how many “World’s Greatest Teacher” mugs or apple jewelry can one person use?
Not sure what to get for a teacher or possibly one who does not celebrate Christmas? Then, don’t worry about getting creative. Parents should understand that school budget cuts have forced some teachers to spend their own money to teach our students. Parents might put together classroom supplies such as tissues, hand wipes, sanitizer, pencils, lined paper as well as copy paper, or dry erase markers. The choices are endless. Put it all together in a nice bag with a “Thank-you” card and there, voila! — a nice holiday package.
Any little gesture will support positive communication and assistance for the remainder of the year.
Go ahead, buy your kids’ teacher a gift — you know you want to.
C.C. Malloy lives in Greensboro and is a steadfast supporter of children with disabilities. Any information here should not be considered legal advice and counsel should be sought for personal educational guidance. For additional support, please visit her website, Bizigal's Exceptional Blooms.