Were gifts for teachers a thing when you were at school?
I certainly don’t remember ever taking a present into school for my teacher, when I was young.
I may have at primary school (a very long time ago) but it’s not surprising that I didn’t when I was at high school; I hated it.
The majority of teachers there were small minded. A lot were uninspiring. And many (it felt) were just going through the motions.
Adults that had never been out of the education system; never had a life outside school or university.
Then there was Mrs Trubshaw. My English teacher.
A shining beacon, in a sea of beige cardigans and grey slacks.
She had a really unique dress sense. Whilst all the other female teachers were rocking 80’s fashions, Mrs Trubshaw wore a purple mini dress with long bell sleeves; or a long brown A-line skirt with green and orange trees appliquéd around the hemline.
She had a wild cloud of hair and dark kohl rimmed eyes.
And when she read to us — she absolutely made the words come alive.
I vividly remember her rendition of ‘Daddy’ by Silvia Plath —
You do not do, you do not doAny more, black shoe
— read in a booming, dramatic voice.
I thought she was wonderful.
Scary — and just a little bit unnerving (you absolutely didn’t want to get on the wrong side of her) — but wonderful.
And very inspiring.
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I was lucky enough to have another inspirational teacher, when I went on to college; Mian Ng.
One of the most influential people in my life.
She championed me, believed in me and pushed me to do the things that she knew I could (before I’d actually recognised that I could, myself).
She was instrumental in me applying to go to Kingston School of Art and — without realising it — she shaped my future and helped me to see the path I was destined to follow.
I’ll be forever grateful to her.
Educating The Future
And now, here I am again.
Years after leaving education, I’m back at school. As a parent, rather than a student, though.
I watched my babies grow and change (seemingly in front of my very eyes) last year; guided by their wonderful Reception teacher. They toddled in — nervous four year olds — but ran out last summer; bigger, stronger and looking like proper little boys.
And this year has ramped up yet another level.
Their teacher — who’s reputation preceded her — is fierce.
A lioness, protecting her cubs.
Growling if they get things wrong, but teaching them everything she knows and praising and rewarding them when they’ve done well.
They love her.
As do I.
She’s balanced discipline with fun.
She’s taught this year’s merry band of Year One pupils to write — beautifully — in joined up, cursive script (my son’s’ handwriting is now better than mine!).
And, most of all, she’s inspired them to learn. She’s instilled such enthusiasm in my boys; they’ve come home, full of tales of how she painted the lenses of pair of glasses, so they couldn’t see, then let them ‘read’ a braille book.
Or how they learnt about the UK (‘mummy did you know that there are four countries in the British Isles?’).
Or how they made sandwiches; and got to spread butter and filling on the bread themselves.
She’s taught them so much, in such a short space of time; she and her assistant have worked wonders.
They’re still slightly nervous of her (she can bark) but she’s made learning such an adventure for them.
Whilst ‘Reception’ was all about settling in, ‘Year One’ has been really transitionary. Our little ones have been properly introduced to the concept of ‘school’.
The toys have (mostly) been packed away.
The children have learnt to listen; to be respectful.
They now understand that school is a place for learning.
And — thanks to their fabulous teacher — learning can be fun.
Gifts For Teachers (That Are Better Than Apples)
So instead of the obligatory apple for the teacher, we’re going to be treating the boys’ Year One teachers to some lovely end of year gifts from Sanctuary Spa.
I’ve spoken about Sanctuary on the blog before — I LOVE the stuff.
Their products smell divine, are really good value and are beautifully packaged.
They’re the perfect gifts for teachers, as a little thank you.
You can buy a lovely, pampering gift set for less than a tenner — so it won’t break the bank — and will be a lovely treat for the well deserving recipient.
I especially like:
Sanctuary Spa Spend More Time Being Gift Set
A cute pouch full of mini Sanctuary Spa classics; body wash, scrub and lotion. Plus luxury bath float and hand cream.
Great little pick-me-ups and the wallet can be reused; the perfect new pencil case for next term maybe?
We’re also big fans of:
Sanctuary Spa Let Go and Unwind Gift Set
This sweet little cardboard tub contains classic Sanctuary scented body wash, scrub and butter plus a shower puff. Ideal for washing off the stresses and strains of the day.
And finally, I love:
Sanctuary Spa Every Moment Matters Gift Set
The perfect treat for hard-working hands, this lovely gift-set contains full size hand-wash and hand lotion, and is an ideal way to say thank you to a much loved teacher.
All the above make great gifts for teachers and are available from Superdrug.
And — best of all — you can save 1/3 on selected gift sets at the moment!
I don’t remember really expressing to Mrs Trubshaw — or to Mian — just how grateful I was for their guidance and tutorage.
But, one thing’s for sure, I’ll definitely be saying thanks to the boys’ teachers this year.
A good teacher is worth their weight in gold.
I am working in partnership with Sanctuary and was kindly given a selection of Sanctuary Spa products to photograph for the purposes of styling this post but all thoughts, words and images — as ever — are entirely my own.
All the products mentioned can be bought from Superdrug.
Caro Davies is a former art-director turned writer and content-creator, and editor behind UK lifestyle blog The Listed Home. She writes about home-related topics, from interiors and DIY to food and craft. The Listed Home has been featured in various publications, including Ideal Home, Grazia, and Homes & Antiques magazines.