Friday, May 4, 2012

Almost Free Teacher Appreciation Gifts

Hello, hello!  Next week is Teacher Appreciation Week at our school.  We are not allowed to spend money on gifts for the teachers, so here’s what I came up with for Kyle’s kindergarten class.

Fingerprint Card

Since I was on the fingerprint bandwagon from Erin’s Mystery Party, it sparked the idea for this card.  I just had each child put one fingerprint on the card to make a couple flowers with everyone’s fingerprints combined.  The card read, “Thanks to you, we are in full bloom!”  Easy and free if you already have the ink pads.




Bucket Filling

Our school, like many other schools, has adopted the bucket filling theme from the book, “Have you filled a bucket today?” by David Messing.  The gist of it is to fill someone’s bucket by doing and saying nice things to each other and not dipping in people’s buckets by saying and doing mean things.

So I thought it’d be fun to play off that idea and literally fill our teachers’ buckets with nice notes.  The lid of the bucket reads, “Thanks for always filling our buckets, now it’s our turn to fill yours.” 



I’ve been itching to do this because I’ve had this bucket sitting in my cupboard for two years!  My son’s third grade teacher had her baby right before Teacher Appreciation Week so we never got to give it to her.  Oh, yes, I did have to buy the buckets, but, shhhh, don’t tell my school.Smile

Since Kyle’s class has two teachers, I was still not able to use that butterfly bucket because Michael’s didn’t have the butterfly print buckets anymore.  I wanted both teachers to have matching ones so I bought plain clear buckets.  To cute it up a bit, I added a monogram with some ribbon.  I actually like it better than the butterfly bucket!  Love it when that happens!








Artwork for the Classroom

This last project is a nod to my cardboard box heart art – completely free and repurposed!  Depending on the supplies you have on hand, it will be free or a very minimal cost.  First, I grabbed a free printable of classroom subway art at eighteen25.  Next, I unfolded the box edges and cut them off so I had a flat piece of cardboard.  Other options would be cereal boxes, old gift boxes, any cardboard. 


I framed it out in “washi” tape that I found at Target in the office supply section.  I think they call it decorative paper tape, comes in a four pack of complimentary colors. 


Then I just punched holes in the top to put a cute ribbon through for hanging on a bulletin board, door handle or wherever it works in the teacher’s class. It’s lightweight, so it makes it easy to hang anywhere. It just took me about 15 minutes to make. Love it!!


Not that anyone will see the back, but just in case it gets flipped around, I wanted it to look better than just the box top logo.  I finished it off by taping the back in a simple horizontal pattern. Yes, you can see the logo from the box peeking through, but that didn’t bother me since it’s not likely that side will be on display.  Actually, now that I’m thinking of it, I will cut a square of cardstock to fit over that spot to say it was from the 2011-2012 class.


I’m in love with this subway art project!  Love that it’s super easy and pretty much free!



So these are my three almost free Teacher Appreciation projects.

Hope you can use them now or even at the end of the school year!

Happy Friday!



  1. Awe so cute! I can't wait until my little guy is that age so I can do some cut teacher gifts too. Actually I can but you know what I mean ;) Great idea!

  2. hi kim!

    thanks so much for your sweet email + for introducing us to your blog!

    your teacher appreciation gifts look wonderful!


  3. These are great gift ideas....I especially love the bucket one. Every teacher I know, including myself, really appreciates the heartfelt notes of appreciation.

    Sharon @ mrs. hines class


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