Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Teacher Survival Kits



This year, I decided to make teacher gifts for the first day of school. (Yes, I'm that excited). The Teacher Survival Kit.

I'm generally a very unoriginal teacher gift giver; bookstore gift cards for every occasion, every teacher, every year. This year I wanted to thank the kids' teachers ahead of time, because this year, I really, really, really mean it! Teachers amaze me.

I struggled on most summer days just to get something other than cereal on the dinner table. I sometimes counted pool time as a bath. (I also counted swimming in the ocean. Or when the kids spilled water/milk/juice on any portion of their bodies). I knew summer would be a challenge - common activities for ages 3, 5 and 7 - all day, in this heat? I can't even take all three to the grocery store for milk without giving myself a pep talk! I had no idea they would work so well together as a team or that I would be the enemy. But 7 is just old enough to realize that you aren't perfect, to map your weaknesses and plot your downfall. And 3 is just old enough to help execute secret missions yet look too young and cute to be guilty. 5 is smart enough to know she can get away with anything as long as the evidence portrays 7 as the brains and 3 as the foot soldier.

So that brings us back to - TEACHERS! The amazing people who take these summer monsters and turn them back into the wonderful children that we haven't seen since June. I wanted to thank the kids' teachers upfront this year, to start the year by acknowledging how much they give and to express how grateful we are for every bit of it.

The Teacher Survival Kit
. The idea is to fill a container with things that might be useful during the year, especially on crazy days when a teacher might be in a rush and need some extra caffeine, vitamins, headache relief, possibly even breakfast or lunch. Add a few convenience items, and definitely a good lip balm and a good hand lotion.


Contents:
Large Pencil Case (as container)
Excedrin Tension Headache
Scott Mini Lint Roller
Purell Hand Sanitizer
BreathSavers
Vitamin C Drops
Luna Lemon Zest Meal Bar
C.O. Bigelow Lemon Lip Balm
Nail File
True Blue Spa Look Ma, New Hands Lotion
Wisp Disposable Toothbrushes
Tide To Go Pen
2 Lipton Energize To Go Iced Tea Mix packets
2 Propel Cherry-Lime Vitamin Enhanced Drink Mix packets


On the inside lid I tried to be funny...


...but then I read that one of the teachers graduated high school in 1998. Can teachers be too young for Seinfeld references? Yikes.

52 comments:

Charlotte said...

Great idea!

Kasey said...

Love the idea!!

Jeff and Brandi Koonce said...

I am a teacher who graduated High School in 2001 and I definitely get your Seinfeld reference! (And have quoted it often!) I plan to do these for some of my teaching friends when the next school year starts.

Lucky Penney said...

I am a teacher that graduated from high school in 2002 and I got your Seinfeld reference!! I love this!

Barb said...

I'm a teacher who graduated high school in'98 and I totally get your Seinfeld reference and would love to get a kit like this!

annakay511 said...

I am a high school teacher who graduated high school in...2006! haha. I love this idea - I'm going to save it for when I have new-teacher colleagues!

Sara Cart said...

So wish I was going to get one of these from my students

Jess said...

I've been looking for something for my daughter's teachers. She is in daycare but still a baby, so her teachers don't need crayons and glue. This is perfect!!

Allison said...

I graduated high school in 2003, and I got the "Serenity Now" reference!! :) I would LOVE a gift like this!

Leslie said...

Totally could have written that first paragraph about my three oldest this summer already!
And what a gray idea for the gift box.

Amber said...

Don't Worry! I graduated 2004 from high school and LOVE that quote! Such a cute idea, thanks!

Louanne said...

Thanks for this great idea! My daughter will start her student teaching semester in a few weeks and I'm going to make 2 of these. One for her and one for her mentor teacher.

Magan Brown said...

I am a teacher who graduated high school in 2007. And no, I don't get the reference... but this idea is beyond sweet. There have been so many days I have needed one or more of these items. So thoughtful of you!

Carrie said...

No worries- I graduated high school in 2004 and totally understand:) But it could be that I watch Seinfeld at least once every night! Great ideas for the "survival kit!" As a fellow teacher, i have needed every one of these items throughout the course of a year! Thanks for sharing!

Jennifer Murchie said...

Fantastic idea!!! As a teacher I love gifts, but appreciate useful ones so much more ;) just a suggestion for 2 other tiny additions, because I keep these on hand...Tums and floss. I wish you had a 1st grader in my class !!!

Jenna Chilton said...

I need to start by saying that, as a teacher AND a mother of three (ages 8, 5, and almost 2), I laughed until I cried at the beginning of this blog! Great idea! I wish I would get this at the beginning of the year. And as a high school graduate class of 2000, I TOTALLY got the Seinfeld reference.

Kris said...

I love you idea! I live (and teach) in Brazil where teachers don't really get gifts. But I think I'm going to do this for my fellow teachers this year. So fun and encouraging!

Rebecca Robinson said...

I Love that you wrote "serenity now" !!!! i have a monogramed bag for car that says that same thing. And yes, if she graduated in 1998, she may not get it. that is so funny!

Amy Schindel said...

BAh! My kids are almost the exact same ages - 8, 6 (just last week) and 3. This week I have TOTALLY counted swimming and sprinklers at baths. (I work full time though, so I do get a little break during the day) I feel your pain, and love your teacher gift idea. Thanks for sharing!

poppy lovesaparty said...

My daughter graduated from high school in '98. Her second year of teaching put her back at the elementary school that she attended as a child. The first time she had to wear "spirit wear" she only had her fifth grade t-shirt from the school and it still fit!(sometimes she's not my favorite child)She wore it and caught a lot of grief for how young she was, especially among a few of the teachers who had once had her in their classes as a student. It's funny how young, young seems when you're middle age.

Betsy Gratiot said...

My niece is just starting her first teaching job in a few weeks and I wanted to send her something to celebrate her job. This is perfect! Going tomorrow to gather the goodies! Thanks

jenny said...

I saw this pinned on Pintrest. I'm a teacher and think it's great. I plan on getting it together for a student teacher (if I get one this fall). Great idea.

Mel said...

I love this idea. I agree, teachers go through a lot. Not only is this a great beginning school idea, but Christmas gift idea too... cuz we all know they will probably use this within the first month.. LOL. Great idea!!!

Christy Denkins said...

Love this idea :)

Molly said...

Never read your blog before - great post - especially love the first have (about the 3, 5 and 7 working together). :) Thanks.

Eri said...

I'm a middle school teacher who graduated high school in 2008. I totally got your Seinfeld reference! :)

teachermomof2 said...

Great idea and great blog! I'm a teacher and I would love a kit like this to survive the year. I will be making one for dd's teacher and maybe even for some fellow teachers.

Lori Lucas said...

I saw this on Pinterest. As a high school teacher I would absolutely LOVE it if I received this. High school teachers usually don't get too many gifts! ha! What a great idea you have. I also read the blog that went with your idea. I just wanted to say as a teacher, I would LOVE to have your children in my class. You totally get it! Thanks from teachers everywhere! Lori Lucas

wsmith said...

Artscow runs sales on their cosmetic bags quite often so I got an extra large cosmetic bag and put most of these items in it for our first day of first grade. I am glad to see the comments from teachers that this is something good. May have to plan on doing it every year :)

Brooke said...

I graduated high school in 2003 and I got the reference! Maybe it's due to my older siblings, but I love Seinfeld!

Lisa Julian said...

I'm a teacher and I totally love this gift idea! I have a son starting 8th grade. Though, I too teach older kids (6th), I can't imagine teaching 120 hormonal 8th graders each day! I may have to make some of these for them. Thanks for the idea and for supporting your children's teachers. I can't tell you how much a kind word or gesture from a parent or student can mean in the first days of school!

VSPCMOPS said...

So cute! I graduated in 98 and was a teacher until I had kids (we're even old enough for that ;)) and I totally get your reference.

~The Bargain Babe from *Zucchini Summer Blog* said...

"7 as the brains and 3 as the foot soldier." hahaha. Great survival kit! I did one for my 2nd graders teacher last year...I had the advil, stain pen, a $5 gc to teacher store, gum and a couple other things.

Blair said...

No, not all of us are too young for Seinfeld! I'm a kindergarten teacher and graduated high school in 2006 and I would absolutely DIE if a parent did something so thoughtful for me! It's nice to be appreciated!

Templesteachingtales.blogspot.com

Craig . Kate . Xavier . Cass said...

Um, one of my son's teachers graduated in 2007 ... so yeah. Maybe an iCarly reference might be more appropriate.

MareMare said...

I graduated hs in 1999 and we were huge Seinfeld fans. Junior year when Seinfeld ended we had a party at my house, with the episode playing in 3 different rooms.

Theresa said...

Love this! School started Monday, but I think I can whip this up by the end of the week! I already have most everything I need from couponing!

stephanie falcon said...

I teach fourth grade...and I graduated high school in 2005. :) Totally understood the reference.

Mary Gallagher said...

I love it. My twins teacher is going to have my twin boys & a set of triplets and other kids starting school this year. I think she could definetly use a couple of these. Thank you so much for sharing

Jaclyn Griffith said...

I am a teacher and your thoughtfulness brought tears to my eyes. The things you included are ABSOLUTELY PERFECT! Your kiddos' teachers will be so blessed to have you as a parent!

Get Your Sexy Back said...

As a teacher, I love this idea! I would be delighted to receive this! What a fun idea. Plus, I loved your sense of humor...spilled juice as bath time? Love it!

staciessj said...

My daughter just got her first teaching job, I am putting together a kit for her first day :-)

Nicole Romel said...

I am team leader and made one for each teacher on the team (including myself). That is everything I ask for from other teachers during the school year. I even went a little farther and added a tampon (it is an all female team) and a couple of large safety pins. They are going to LOVE it. Wonderful idea.

Miranda Marshall said...

I'm teacher that graduated in..wait for it... 2006. But thanks to my parents I get your Seinfeld reference!

Miranda Marshall said...

Also, I am making this kit for myself and more importantly my husband who has a class of high school kids that seem to eat a lot of sugar at lunch and want to fight everyone. :/

Oh, Detroit Public Schools.

Ms. Miller said...

Loved your box of thoughtful gifts! I would be so touched to receive a gift like this!

Tom said...

Congratulations Admin! Thank you so much for taking the time to share this exciting information.
survivalkit.com

Daniel Wescott said...

Hey I just finished reading your blog and I think it's great!! Being a teacher is tough and knowing that somebody cares makes me feel happy. I'm mostly accompanying kindergarten on excursion trips so I usually maintain a 72 hour kit that includes wet wipes, aspirin, Band-Aids and some chewing gum. I'll definitely improve my kit now. Thanks.

ethan said...



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Susan G. said...

Thanks so much for this great idea! Did it this year for back to school and the teachers both really loved it! I would post a picture for you if I knew how!!

JenFefee11 said...

How did you print out the tags?? I have everything don't but tag idea.

Mr Aipoi said...

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