18 Clutter Free Gifts for Teachers

I have many teacher friends and have seen over the years a pretty serious collection of clutter built up from all their students. Teachers love their students and they love the thought put into a gift given to them, it’s hard to let go of items that remind them of people they love. So, let’s help our teachers out and commit to no more coffee cups or gaudy brooches to be burdened with. šŸ™‚

  1. Coffee Shop Gift Card. Coffee is a favorite morning drink for most, why not gift them something they’ll be sure to use?! Pick a coffee shop that is close to the school, so they can grab a quick pick-me-up whenever they need it.
  2. Restaurant Gift Card. Want something a bit more? Treat your teacher to dinner with a gift card to a Restaurant.
  3. Spa Gift Card. Massage, hair appointment, manicure, let the receiver decide how they want to be pampered most.
  4. Movie Gift Card. Having a gift card to see a movie they’ve been looking forward to is a treat and will help them to take some much needed “me time” without feeling guilty.
  5. Theatre Gift Card. Just like a movie, this is a great way to spoil your teacher, particularly enjoyable for drama and music teacher.
  6. Sports Event Tickets. If you know your teacher is a fan of a certain sport, gift them with the ability to see it in person. In our area, college games are very popular.
  7. A combined gift card. Ask all the students to contribute to an amazon gift card- ask all the parents to contribute $5 and give her a lovely gift!
  8. Farmer’s Market Voucher. Browsing the market and being able to pick out their own gift is useful and appreciated.
  9. Flowers. A bright bouquet is a lovely gift that can be enjoyed for a short amount of time and then disposed of without guilt.
  10. Plants. Plants bring in a bit of outdoors for those stuck in a big building all day- but make sure that the teacher enjoys plants before giving this gift.
  11. Stickers. Elementary school teachers buy many things they use in their classrooms. Getting extra stickers for them to put on completed papers is a great help.
  12. Classroom supplies. Again, this may work more so for elementary teachers, but they often purchase extra supplies to get them through the year. Pencils, tissues, tape, dry erase markers, glue, etc.
  13. Personal Organizer Voucher. Keeping all the supplies organized at the end of the year is a lot of work- how about getting them some help with that? A personal organizer is always helpful and is sure to be a blessing.
  14. Food Basket. As much as I love giving homemade baked items unless the teacher knows your family well, they may not feel comfortable consuming homemade goodies. (You can’t blame them, think of how many kids they see picking their noses!) So, if the teacher doesn’t know your family well, consider a prepackaged food basket or a fruit basket.
  15. Immunity Boosters. Teachers are surrounded by germs and don’t have time to get sick! Give a gift of wellness: A box of Emergen-C, a bottle of Essential Oil or elderberry syrup.
  16. Time. Schedule some time with the teacher in your life to help them organize supplies, make copies, gather supplies for their next unit study or anything else they need.
  17. Portable Humidifier. Technically, not clutter-free, but very useful! You can find little humidifiers that plug into a USB port and some turn a water bottle into a humidifier.
  18. Thank You Note. A handwritten thank you note to let the teacher know the impact they have had and how much you appreciate them giving of themselves is very meaningful and often more welcomed than any material item.

More on gifts:

Clutter-Free Gift Guide – This gift guide is a compilation of all the gift-lists published on the blog, from toddlers to grandparents and everyone in between. Clutter-free and toy-free ideas. Click here to get this 33-page PDF for $7.

About Rachel Jones

Hi there! Iā€™m Rachel Jones, and I founded Nourishing Minimalism in 2012 at the beginning of my minimalist journey after I'd been doing a yearly decluttering challenge for 4 years and started to see a change in my home. If you're looking for encouragement in your journey, please join our FREE Facebook Group: Nourishing Minimalism Facebook Group


  1. Alix Stayton Hernandez on 08/07/2014 at 4:06 pm

    Love these! I hadn’t thought about concerns with homemade foods, so true. I’d like to add Kleenex to both the classroom supplies list AND the immunity boosters list. Classrooms go through a lot if Kleenex in high-illness months (colds in winter, allergies in spring), so that might help with the nose-picking! Also, of necessity, schools buy Kleenex in bulk and it’s usually the generic, scratchy kind. Giving your favorite teacher some “nicer” Kleenex seems thoughtful to me.

    • Rachel on 08/07/2014 at 4:14 pm

      Oh very true! Thanks Alix!

      • Jenni Sternberg on 10/27/2014 at 2:26 am

        I like these ideas but I disagree with school supplies or things for studentd, even though we DO buy our own supplies often, I feel disappointed when I get stuff for the classroom, it is like they are giving ME gifts for THEIR kids, not usually things I can use anyway. My opinion is get something to spoil the teacher, something she/he CANNOT use on the students, they DESERVE to pamper themselves, so no giftcards to places like bookstores, they will just buy another book for the kids, spoil them, they deserve it šŸ˜‰

        • Rachel on 10/27/2014 at 3:00 pm

          Thanks for your input Jenni! When I wrote the post I got both responses from the teachers I talked to, some only wanted to be pampered and others really wanted those classroom supplies. I think you are right though- they deserve to pamper themselves!

          • Kathie on 12/30/2016 at 9:30 am

            It’s best to get to know the teacher’s preferences. I ENJOY a gift card for books & yes, most likely the books that I buy will be for my students. I enjoy sharing great books with my students. I also enjoy the gift of teacher supplies such as nice pens, nice stationary, stickers, etc. I received a colorful tin pencil box with a bow on it this Christmas. Inside were cute stationary items that I enjoyed & found very useful. It was one of my favorite gifts. I also LOVE receiving a thank you note in a Christmas card. It is lovely to be Appreciated for making a Difference in a CHILD’S life. Thank you notes from families mean a lot to me!
            Some teachers enjoy these gifts while Some teachers DO NOT. It’s best to get to know your child’s teacher!

  2. Joy on 12/09/2014 at 1:18 am

    The gift cards are great. I’d be careful about the organizer voucher. Unless you know the teacher well, you don’t know how that would be received.
    About the classroom supplies, I’d recommend a gift card to someplace like Target instead. If the teacher needs supplies, he/she can use it for those. Or, he or she could spend it on sorely needed diapers for a little one at home, like I’ve done.

  3. Evie on 12/16/2014 at 4:38 am

    I normally bake for my kids teachers, this year I decided a nice bottle of wine all wrapped in pretty paper (to keep it hidden from prying eyes, as I’m sure thats a big no no) the teachers really appreciated it. Lets face it, after dealing with kids all day, who wouldn’t enjoy a glass of nice wine#

  4. Melissa on 06/09/2015 at 4:04 pm

    Our elementary school does a teacher appreciation week near the end of the school year. Each day of that week is themed differently and designed to make one large gift from 15-20 small things. Examples: flower day (one cut/bought flower from each kid=large bouquet), school supply day, fruit bowl, treat day (either gift card or favorite snack). My kids love picking out things unique to their teacher’s likes and the teachers love that it’s both personal and professional pampering.

    • Rachel on 06/10/2015 at 4:55 pm

      That sounds nice!

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