Teacher Appreciation Week Ideas for Every Day

Teacher Appreciation Week Ideas for Every Day

Themes and thoughts for teacher appreciation, Monday through Friday.

by Lani Harac


Editor’s note: If you choose a theme or activity that includes food, keep dietary restrictions and allergies in mind during planning; offer alternatives like gift cards or prepackaged foods that won’t spoil for those staff members that need it.

Our Favorite Superheroes

  • Decorate a bulletin board with personalized superpowers, such as “Mrs. Smith’s superpower is getting kids excited about reading!”

  • Put a water bottle or two with a superhero label on each teacher’s desk.

  • Offer a variety of “hero” sandwiches for lunch. Borrow some kids’ action figure toys to use for centerpieces.

  • Make T-shirts or capes for each teacher with a “super teacher” iron-on design.

  • Give each teacher a take-home certificate with their superpower on it.

Share a superhero shout-out on your parent group’s Facebook page!

A Little Pampering

  • Stock the staff restrooms with soft toilet paper, nice soap, and rich hand lotion.

  • Put out mini scones and muffins in a basket in the teachers lounge.

  • Set up a tea and coffee bar.

  • Offer gourmet finger sandwiches and mini quiches for lunch one day (have plenty so teachers can fill up!)

  • Provide mini massages in the teachers lounge.


Bar None, You’re the Best Teachers Around!

Five days of buffet-style fun! Our video instructions on how to set up a trail mix bar can work for almost any kind of bar you’d like.

  • Breakfast parfait bar

  • Soup bar (attach a “souper teacher” label to the to-go containers)

  • Trail mix bar

    • For smaller, denser treats like chocolate chips and fruit bits, plan on about 1 oz total per person; for larger, bulkier mix-ins like popcorn and pretzels, figure on 2 oz total per person. This should result in a generous serving to take home.

    • Hit discount stores like the Dollar Store for serving supplies and even snacks, or buy snacks in bulk to cut costs.

  • Popcorn bar

  • Sundae bar

50+ teacher appreciation ideas, plus planning tools, flyers, and more


Our Teachers Are Stars

  • Arrange an applause parade in the hallways as teachers walk to their classrooms.

  • Give out small bags of Starburst candy with a tag that says “You’re the star of our school!”

  • Deliver fan mail (notes from students that start with “My teacher is a star because...”) to teachers during class.

  • Roll out a red carpet Walk of Fame for a VIP lunch in the staff lounge; decorate the carpet with stars showing each teacher’s name.

  • Give each teacher a personalized “You Set the Stage for Success” certificate; use categories like “Most Encouraging” and “Best Team Player,” or draw from students’ fan mail comments.


Major-League Awesome or Thanks for Covering All the Bases

  • Decorate a bulletin board with “stats” on each teacher designed like baseball cards.

  • Give each teacher a baseball cap or baseball jersey-style shirt with the school and PTO name and “Major-League Awesome” or other catchphrase.

  • Provide a “home run” luncheon: hot dogs with all the fixings, chips, large soft pretzels, Cracker Jacks, and Baby Ruth candy bars.

  • Make “baseball and bat” pretzel rods and put a few in a little bag for each teacher.

  • Raffle off four tickets to a weekend home game by your local baseball or farm team.


It’s Such a Treat To Have You as Teachers

Send teachers home each day with something to enjoy whenever they want.


Public Displays of Affection

  • Decorate classroom doors with expressions of love for that room’s teacher.

  • Decorate a bulletin board with “I love my teacher because...” notes.

  • Ask parents to contribute teacher shout-outs for morning announcements.

  • Draw and write chalk messages on the sidewalks outside the school.

  • Give each teacher a take-home autograph book with their “I love my teacher because...” notes inside (print on self-adhesive labels and stick one to each page after taking down off the bulletin board).


It’s the Thought That Counts


Teachers Are Punderful

Your teachers will get a chuckle even while they’re moved by these sentiments.


Nacho Ordinary Teachers or Taco ’Bout Great Teachers

  • Leave a mini potted succulent plant on each teacher’s desk.

  • Set up a taco, burrito, or nacho bar for lunch. For centerpieces, turn 10-gallon hats upside down and fill with classroom supplies.

  • Visit teachers during break periods with a paletas (Mexican popsicles) dessert cart.

  • Offer teachers piñata time in the gym.

  • Churro truffles are relatively easy to make; put a few in a small box for each teacher to take home.


We Think the World of You

  • Decorate a bulletin board with a map showing where your school’s teachers are from and include a fun fact about each person.

  • Offer a breakfast cart with pastries from around the world: scones (England), croissants (France), fried dough sticks (China), blini or sirniki (Russia), and pandesal (Philippines).

  • Represent teachers’ nationalities with food provided potluck-style by volunteers at a “Best Teachers in the World” luncheon. Decorate with flags from different countries and geographic stickers like the ones put on old-fashioned luggage.

  • Design a “passport to free time” that includes coupons for parents to take over lunch duty, recess duty, or supervising the drop-off/pickup line; students can contribute with classroom job coupons, too.

  • Send teachers home with a variety of cookies from around the world; attach a gift tag that says “Thank you!” in different languages.


Let’s Get Real, We Couldn’t Survive Without You (Survivor theme)

  • Survival kit: Bring your teacher supplies or other desired items for their classroom.

  • Immunity challenge: Put together a self-care kit with tea, hand sanitizer, energy bar, etc.

  • Message in a bottle: Write a note to your teacher.

  • Desert island smoothies: Use tropical fruit for a refreshing treat.

  • Life’s a beach: Give each teacher a pair of flip-flops and a beach towel with the school logo.


We’ll Be There for You (Friends theme)

  • The one with the dozen lasagnas

  • The one with all the candy

  • The one with Mac and C.H.E.E.S.E.

  • The one with Phoebe’s cookies

  • The one with the cake


Teamwork Makes the Dream Work

  • #1 fan: Write a letter to a staff member.

  • Time out: Put out small, individually wrapped treats for a quick break.

  • You’re an MVP: Create personalized award certificates.

  • Team colors: Wear your teacher's favorite sports team gear or favorite colors.

  • Saved by the bell: Provide ice cream or coffee treats at the end of the school day.


Fruits and Flowers

  • Seed packets (herbs or flowers): Teachers plant the seeds of knowledge.

  • Fresh flowers or small potted plants: Our garden is in full bloom thanks to you; or, we couldn’t have picked better teachers.

  • Oranges, clementines, tangerines: Orange you glad it’s almost summer?

  • Bananas: We are bananas about you, thank you for all you do!

  • Fresh-squeezed lemonade: Your zest for learning is so refreshing.


Best Staff in the Galaxy (Star Wars theme)

  • May the forks be with you (any meal)

  • Thank you we shall (any treat)

  • After-school refuel (snacks at the end of the day)

  • Yoda best staff member (personal notes for each staffer)

  • Jedi supplies (restock classrooms with favorite school supplies, books, etc.)


We Appreciate You to Pieces

  • We’d be in serious trouble if we didn’t have you

  • We don’t domi-know what we’d do without you

  • Here’s a clue how much we appreciate you

  • We are bowled over by you

  • We’d be completely puzzled without you


You Help Us Take Flight

  • Snack service (snack cart or room service)

  • Drink service (drink cart or new insulated mugs filled with coffee)

  • In-flight meal (food truck or other)

  • In-flight entertainment (movie passes)

  • Baggage claim (take-home treat)


Our Staff Takes the Gold

  • Gold medal goodies (fridge restock)

  • Breakfast of champions

  • Refueling station (coffee or tea)

  • Winners circle (snacks)

  • Finish line (dessert bar)


Originally posted in 2017 and updated regularly.

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