If your kids haven't started school yet, you may not realize it, but this week is Teacher Appreciation week, and if anyone needs to be appreciated, it's those loving teachers educating our precious little ones. The PTA started this event over 20 years ago and this year there's even Teacher Appreciation 2.0 on facebook. While I really appreciate my kid's teachers, and try to show them that by volunteering, and bringing in cups of coffee when I'm missed a few months, this year is really challenging my organization skills, not to mention my memory (and by memory, I mean programming my phone to alert me each morning with instructions.)
Last year I got off easy, as we were at a preschool where most of the parents could not afford tuition, much less gifts for the teachers, and pretty much all free time by administrators and volunteers were spent writing grants. I brought in goodies for the teachers and they thought it was for Mother's Day. This year I'm at an elementary school with a thriving PTA, who I also appreciate. I'm a member of the PTA, meaning I paid my $10, but don't exactly consider myself a PTA Parent. I went to one meeting, ready for some juicy stories, and found a small group of nice women (and one man, the president), not a designer sweatsuit among them, and it was, well, pretty boring. But they organize all sorts of events, and for that I am grateful. They ask for lots of volunteers, and I do my best, but not a single person at the school has ever made me feel guilty for not stepping up when asked.
So they not only collected money for this week, including a deal struck with Mabel's Labels to raise extra funds, but they planned the whole week out.
Day "0" - turn in two teacher appreciation forms. Each child is supposed to fill one out for a teacher, and one for another adult at the school. A girl scout troop has volunteered to compile them in a book for each teacher.
Day 1 - each kid brings a flower to his or her teacher
Day 2 - snacks in the teacher lounge
Day 3 - cookies in the teacher lounge
Day 4 - I honestly don't even know
Day 5 - Teacher Appreciation Books
Here's how our family's participation went:
Day "0" - Completely missed the packet with the form, and stumbled across a message on the yahoo group about it so picked up a copy in the office. Knowing how things get destroyed or lost in the house, thought we might need a few extra copies. The next day I see this email message:
"If anyone's children are like mine, they may need extra copies of the appreciation page for others they'd like to thank . This made me think other families MAY have similar needs and thought I would post it to the group."
Ya, right. I talked to my son about this for a week, and he could not come up with a single extra name. Of course it probably didn't help that my husband kept whispering daddy when I asked. Daddy may coach soccer at the school, but he doesn't count for his own child. I managed to get him to draw a picture of his teacher, write "Es un mi Maestra Raimerez" and his name and room number. Forget the suggested prompts (My teacher is special because..., I will always remember my teacher because..., I admire my teacher because...). Maybe next year.
I was the only one of the family that got all hot and bothered here, and I know I really just need to let it go. While he's said some lovely things about his teacher in the past, right now he doesn't like school, if pressed he can come up with one favorite part, which is recess, and his teacher just makes him do stuff. The best part was when I said she does so much for you kids and it'd be nice to give her something in return. "She gets stuff, mommy. She gets our homework."
Day 1: A flower? How on earth am I supposed to get a flower? I'm lame, I know. We brought her coffee and a Starbucks Card, lovingly filled out by Keegan.
Day 2 - I'm all over the snacks. Guacamole and chips, from the store.
Day 3 - "We want to make cookies. We'll help." Guess how many cookies we made this weekend? Uh uh, another late night for mommy. Sad thing is the kids were so excited about making them, but when I went to sign up everyone was bringing cookies and snack list was empty. So I signed up for both.
That's it, I'm done on Wednesday. And my husband is going to have to bring all the stuff in as I've got 8am meetings, but at least he knows where the Teacher's Lounge is.