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May 12, 2015

Teacher Gifts: Theme Baskets on a Budget

By Meghan Everette
Grades PreK–K, 1–2, 3–5, 6–8, 9–12

    The end of year is approaching! I enjoy selecting gifts for my son’s teachers as well as my coworkers who have been supportive throughout the year. The problem is finding a gift that a teacher actually wants and that won’t break the bank. Themed baskets for each educator’s interest assembled at the dollar store are easy to create. The possibilities are endless and everyone feels special when thought clearly went into the gift.

     

    Assembly Tips

    • Use a creative container that fits the theme

    • Stuff the bottom with newspaper, plastic bags, or tissue paper to appear fuller

    • Tape helps hold objects in place for picture-perfect baskets

    • Keep objects in a color theme for maximum impact

     

    dog gift basket

    Animal Lovers

    Put treats and toys in a water bowl for the animal lover. Use dry food or treats for “stuffing.” Add a lint roller and scented candle for keeping the owner’s home looking and smelling great. Look for brand names and USA-made items for discriminating owners.

     

    Add on: go the extra mile by adding a donation to a local rescue.

     

    beach themed gift basket

    Beach Bums

    Grab a plastic pail and fill it with goodies needed for the beach. Flip flops, aloe, and a plastic water bottle are fun for the sun. Tuck in water or small snacks from your pantry to fill out the basket.

     

    Add on: throw in a great beach read or a monogrammed towel.

     

    baking themed gift basket

    Brownie Points

    Dollar stores have great small-sized snacks and unique baking goods. Throw a few spatulas in a mixing bowl and add a dry mix, icing, cupcake liners, and matching silly straws. If the foodie in your life prefers savory foods, select dip mixes and spices and pair with a whisk or measuring spoons.

     

    Add on: a cookbook or gift card to a local ice cream place pair well with fresh-baked cake.

     

    craft themed gift basket

    Crafty Critters

    If there’s a crafter in your school, they will love a selection of new odds and ends to try. Pick up fun stickers, specialty paper, pom-poms, paints, glitter, and decorative tape for the creative types. Include a blank canvas, wooden letter, or journal for a project starter.

     

    Add on: tuck in a gift card to a local craft store or be really generous and give the gift of enrollment to a local art class.

    gardening themed gift basket

    Green Thumbs

    Summer is a great time to tend to the garden. Fill a pot with seed starters, hand tools, gloves, and sprinkler heads. A few solar lights and garden decorations are great for any landscape artist.

     

    Add on: include a few potted plants or locally-grown vegetables to bring this gift to life.

     

    movie themed gift basket

    Red Carpet

    Treat your teacher to a night on the red carpet. Fill a popcorn box with popcorn packs, soda, candy, and movies. Our dollar store usually carries outdated films, but splurge and get a rental card for the local movie box or a new hit DVD.

     

    Add on: local theaters have gift cards, as does Redbox, so set the scene for great movie watching.

     

     

    The types of baskets are limitless. These baskets were all assembled for under $15 in one quick trip to the discount store. Selection always varies by store, but the idea is the same: use color and theme to help tie together a present that will be remembered.

     

    What are your best teacher gifts for the end of the year?

    The end of year is approaching! I enjoy selecting gifts for my son’s teachers as well as my coworkers who have been supportive throughout the year. The problem is finding a gift that a teacher actually wants and that won’t break the bank. Themed baskets for each educator’s interest assembled at the dollar store are easy to create. The possibilities are endless and everyone feels special when thought clearly went into the gift.

     

    Assembly Tips

    • Use a creative container that fits the theme

    • Stuff the bottom with newspaper, plastic bags, or tissue paper to appear fuller

    • Tape helps hold objects in place for picture-perfect baskets

    • Keep objects in a color theme for maximum impact

     

    dog gift basket

    Animal Lovers

    Put treats and toys in a water bowl for the animal lover. Use dry food or treats for “stuffing.” Add a lint roller and scented candle for keeping the owner’s home looking and smelling great. Look for brand names and USA-made items for discriminating owners.

     

    Add on: go the extra mile by adding a donation to a local rescue.

     

    beach themed gift basket

    Beach Bums

    Grab a plastic pail and fill it with goodies needed for the beach. Flip flops, aloe, and a plastic water bottle are fun for the sun. Tuck in water or small snacks from your pantry to fill out the basket.

     

    Add on: throw in a great beach read or a monogrammed towel.

     

    baking themed gift basket

    Brownie Points

    Dollar stores have great small-sized snacks and unique baking goods. Throw a few spatulas in a mixing bowl and add a dry mix, icing, cupcake liners, and matching silly straws. If the foodie in your life prefers savory foods, select dip mixes and spices and pair with a whisk or measuring spoons.

     

    Add on: a cookbook or gift card to a local ice cream place pair well with fresh-baked cake.

     

    craft themed gift basket

    Crafty Critters

    If there’s a crafter in your school, they will love a selection of new odds and ends to try. Pick up fun stickers, specialty paper, pom-poms, paints, glitter, and decorative tape for the creative types. Include a blank canvas, wooden letter, or journal for a project starter.

     

    Add on: tuck in a gift card to a local craft store or be really generous and give the gift of enrollment to a local art class.

    gardening themed gift basket

    Green Thumbs

    Summer is a great time to tend to the garden. Fill a pot with seed starters, hand tools, gloves, and sprinkler heads. A few solar lights and garden decorations are great for any landscape artist.

     

    Add on: include a few potted plants or locally-grown vegetables to bring this gift to life.

     

    movie themed gift basket

    Red Carpet

    Treat your teacher to a night on the red carpet. Fill a popcorn box with popcorn packs, soda, candy, and movies. Our dollar store usually carries outdated films, but splurge and get a rental card for the local movie box or a new hit DVD.

     

    Add on: local theaters have gift cards, as does Redbox, so set the scene for great movie watching.

     

     

    The types of baskets are limitless. These baskets were all assembled for under $15 in one quick trip to the discount store. Selection always varies by store, but the idea is the same: use color and theme to help tie together a present that will be remembered.

     

    What are your best teacher gifts for the end of the year?

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