By now you’re back into the swing of the school year. Your children have succumbed to earlier bedtimes and frighteningly early wake times. You’ve even accepted your new chore of making school lunches before you make your own. The school year is upon us and it is easy to slip back into old routines and forget about the people you are entrusting your children to each and every day. Your children’s teachers are back at work, too.
Treats for teachers might be the last thing on your mind. After all, they’ve had a lazy summer of studying curricula and spending their own money on countless classroom resources to be used this school year when they are back into the classroom with little time for preparation and even less time for lunch. They’ve greeted your children with excitement for the year’s possibilities and they are ready work and play and learn all day long. Don’t forget they won’t be taking a long lunch at a local restaurant with friends because they eat lunch at their desk while helping students catch up in Math. They won’t be meeting their friends to see the new film tonight because they have a pile of marking to do before morning. And, don’t look for them after four o’clock because they are coaching or directing or tutoring on their own time because they so love their jobs. If you’ve noticed a teachers’s hard work and allegiance to your children then here are a few things you can do to show them you appreciate all that they do and the best part; they won’t cost you a cent.
Send in a Special Lunch
I kid you not, teachers (if they remember to make one) will often hand their lunches to a student who’s forgotten their own. They likely have no time to eat it anyway so feeding a hungry kid is the next best thing. If you’re making yourself a nice lunch for work in the AM, why not make two? Throw in a note explaining that you figured they might have been too busy inspiring your child to make a proper lunch so you’ve decided to treat them. As they are chasing a group of kindergartners in a game of tag they’ll be grateful for the treats for teachers waiting on their desk.
Offer to Take a Teacher’s Duty Once in A while
Often teachers spend so-called ‘breaks’ on duty supervising hundreds of children in the school yard or the cafeteria. It is during these times teachers make a choice: during their break will they eat or visit the restroom because there will certainly not be time for both. If you can commit to a weekly or even monthly visit to take over a duty for your child’s teacher their belly and their bladder will thank you.
Volunteer in the Class
Do you have a special skill to share? Could you spend an afternoon reading with some of the students in the class. With great demands for assessment data teachers are trying desperately to fit in curriculum outcomes and testing during the school day. If you could spend some time with the students that teacher might be able to spend some time assessing her class.
Cut, Copy and Paste
Can you handle a pair of scissors and some glue? Then you could be a teacher’s dream if you’re willing to do some of the prep work for the lessons that require cutting, photocopying or gluing enough resources for the whole class. Many a teacher have suffered a hand cramp or two from numerous marathon cutting sessions. If you can help out with preparations like these you might even get a ‘teacher’s pet’ prize.
Write a Note of Thanks
Seems simple enough, right? Teachers often don’t receive much public support with many misconceptions, about their jobs, floating around. The foolish myth of teachers working only ’til three o’clock is a favorite. The idea that teachers do not work during their summer away from the classroom is another. If you feel your child’s teacher is going above and beyond, send a little note to say thank you. It just might give them the boost they need to get through another busy school year.
You’ve spent some time and effort thanking the teacher but you haven’t spent a cent. Now, take all that money you’ve saved and go buy that teacher a large coffee and something chocolate because sometimes that’s just what they need.