No amount of gifts or “thank you” cards could make up for a teacher’s dedication, but we could try, writes Marchelle Abrahams.
I remember my Grade 6 teacher as being one of the most thoughtful, considerate people I knew. She pushed us to be the best versions of ourselves we could be, and even taught us to swim after the school bell rang and the books were closed.
I now have so much respect for teachers. Like parenting, it is most probably one of the most difficult jobs in the world. A calling of sorts, being a teacher isn’t easy, especially when tasked with shaping the minds of a young nation.
And yes, it might seem that sometimes teachers are not appreciated as much by their learners, but as parents we have so much admiration for the the thankless hours they put in.
No amount of gifts or “thank you” cards could make up for their dedication, but we could try...
To make things a little easier, we’ve asked teachers, far and wide, what their idea of the most appreciated gift would be. Here’s what they had to say…
Shamini Govender, Grades 8 - 12
“A cup saying ‘thank you’ and a little message on it. I think it is all about effort and what they can afford - even a pen with a little message would be appreciated. It really shows the thought behind the gift.”
Theresa Mc Keith, Grade 3
“Anything nice would be appreciated.”
Cheryl Crouch, a Grade 1
“I think a gift must be something that you can keep for a long time,” she says.
“Like a mug, ornament or jewellery, so that it can remind me of the learner much later.”
It’s not just school teachers should be be shown love. What about tertiary educators? Former journalism lecturer Gustav Swart has a somewhat unusual gift request:
“I once overheard a student saying to another ‘if it was me…’
“And her friend interjected: ‘If it were I…’
“I was so damn happy!”
But it seems the No. 1 gift most teachers would treasure has nothing to do with material things. Instead, they value watching their pupils reach their full potential.
“I think my best gift would be reaping the benefits from my hard work, such as my children receiving rewards for their creative writing, designing their own ‘thank you’ cards and writing newspaper articles,” notes Grade 1-5 teacher Margaret Josias.
Just recently three of her learners’ story books were published. “That was the best highlight in my teaching career thus far!”
Fellow teacher Amanda Libala concurs: “Appreciation and cooperation - nothing beats that. I always say this to my pupils: ‘appreciate the effort we as teachers do for you.’
“At the end of the day I want nothing tangible;I want something priceless.”
Top gift suggestions based on our Facebook survey:
- Gift vouchers
- Personalised mug/cup