Teacher’s day is just around the corner again. This year, Teacher’s day is scheduled for Friday 7th September, that being the first Friday of the month. However, since it coincide with the September school holiday this year, many schools are celebrating the occasion on 31 st August instead.
This is one of those meaningful occasions which we both look forward to but sometimes stress over.We welcome the opportunity to show our appreciation for our kids’ teachers for passing on knowledge, skills and values to them. It’s also a great time to teach our kids the about giving thanks and appreciation. Sometimes, we stress over the etiquette and nuances involved in gift-giving (and explaining to our kids about it)
It is easy to just say that it is the thought that counts. However, there are quite a lot of other consideration that comes in.
Culture, the the country’s gift-giving etiquette, the organization the teachers work for all play a part. Once, while my boy is in preschool, a mum form another Asian country asked what is the appropriate gift to give to show appreciation to teachers in Singapore. I was surprised when she shares that in her country, it is the norm to give expensive gifts such as wine and gift vouchers to teachers. She further shares that parents there believe that kids may be treated less favorably by teachers if the gifts are deemed to be too “light”. I was very surprised and asked if that is really the case? I was relieve to hear that there is really no evidence that it is, but parents just felt oblige to give expensive gifts thinking that the teachers expected it.
In Singapore, the opposite is often the case., especially when the teacher belongs to a government affiliate school. There is a strict code of conduct among civil servants about receiving expensive gifts. Overly expensive gifts may in fact cause the teacher more trouble than joy at times even though the intention of giving out the gifts are good. Most teachers from government affiliated schools and even private organizations shared that they will usually decline the more expensive gifts by well meaning parents. One parent I know even shared that her kid’s government affiliated childcare sent out a note before the big day asking parents to refrain from giving gifts at all. The note suggests that should the parent really wish to show appreciation to a particular teacher, writing a letter commending the teacher will be a more meaningful gesture.
So with all that considerations, just what is a appropriate to give for the occasion? A hand made /written card will be a nice gesture as is other little tokens like flowers. Practical little gifts like red pens, post-it pads and exercise books from the school’s book shop are also common gifts. Homemade crafts and bake goods are also nice, affordable gifts.
Coming soon… Ideas and crafts for Teachers Day Gift Giving.