The silly season is approaching fast and those wonderful teachers who have helped your children grow, shouldn’t be forgotten! I have put together my top 8 creative ideas for teacher appreciation gifts and not one of them includes an apple, chocolates or a mug! I also spoke with a few teachers to find out their thoughts on the end of year gifts and the ones that always mean the most are the handmade, even if it is just a handmade card. On the flip side, in eight year of teaching, one teacher informed me she has received over 20 mugs but doesn’t drink tea or coffee. We are all guilty of the classic fall back of chocolates but if we actually stop and think, these teachers are receiving more than 20 gifts, usually in the same last week of school!


Lets be more proactive this year my friends and perhaps choose something from the list below…


  1. Buy a plain mdf clipboard, do a painting on it and then gather the letters of the teachers name with magazine letters and glue them down. A water based clear varnish over the top will seal the deal. These clipboards can then be hung in classroom (they usually have that little clip) or actually used!
  2. Grab a shoe box or similar, decoupage outside in any paper you wish (just to fancy it up) and fill it with cool sticky notes, pens, markers, sticky tape etc. Wrap it in clear cellophane so that is resembles as bouquet. Remember, teachers have to buy their own stationery so these little
  3. Buy a plain white egg cups and some porcelain pens and draw a mini picture onto them. You can order these pens through Mrs Red’s (allow 2 weeks) or buy online.
  4. Get your hands on an old (or new) straw dispenser, decoupage it, perhaps with your teachers first initial of surname (magazine letters), fill it with graphite pencils so they can dispense easily.
  5. Buy a small terracotta flower pot, paint it with acrylic paint or Posca paint pens (buy from Mrs Red’s), maybe stick some beads on it (need a hot glue gun for this) and buy a small cactus plant as these can sit anywhere, no sun required!
  6. There are websites that sell artists works as prints on travel mugs etc. Mrs Red’s art works are all on Society6 and you can order cushion covers, travel mugs, ipad covers, even shower curtains! If the teacher really loves pineapples for example, order them something with an artists pineapple artwork on it. It will be fairly original! (2 to 3 week delivery)
  7. Handmade Christmas Tree decorations are always great here in Australia because we end the school year just before Christmas. One teacher told me she still hangs this gorgeous bauble a young boy made her, on the tree every year and this boy would now be well into his 20’s.
  8. Vouchers! If you own a business like my own, give the teachers a voucher. My kids are all handing out Wine & Untangle vouchers this year! Especially nice for high school teachers that may not receive many end of year appreciation gifts.


DID YOU KNOW… Largs Public School, near Maitland NSW, is Australia’s oldest, still operating school. It opened in 1838 as a Church school and became official in 1943 – wow!


“Books are the quietest and most constant of friends; they are the most accessible and wisest of counselors, and the most patient of teachers.”  ― Charles William Eliot


Visit www.mrsredsartroom.com.au for information on the art programs for children & adults. Visit the shop at Burleigh Heads for all your art supplies and classes!


Mrs Red

Mrs Red  

Jane Whittred (aka Mrs. Red) has a Bachelor of Art under one arm, a PG Diploma of Education under the other, three children and a hubby in one hand and a mini farm in the Gold Coast’s hinterland in the other hand. Jane owns Mrs. Red’s art room in Miami and believes this business found her mixing two degrees together and using these skills to open an art room to teach both children and adults visual art. www.mrsredsartroom.com.au