The school year is coming to an end, and with it comes the (sometimes) crippling anxiety of picking out the perfect thank-you gift for your kid's teacher. After all, this is the person who's taught — and put up with — your child for a year; you can't just slap an apple on her desk and call it a day. But fear not. We've scoured the internet to find some of the coolest gifts on the market that will undoubtedly earn you (OK, and your kid) an A.
Here's a list of 22 gifts for a bunch of budgets that teachers will actually appreciate and use.
Gift cards... but in a bouquet
Gift cards may not seem like the most creative option, but trust us, they're definitely useful. Hey, no one's ever complained about free money!
One great way to include everyone from your child's class is to go in on a gift card bouquet, like this one from The Cul-De-Sac. Pick a point person (why not you!), and ask parents to contribute however much they feel comfortable with giving. Then select a handful of gift cards to places like Amazon, Trader Joe's, Target or a local restaurant. To make the gift, you'll need an inexpensive flowerpot, some foam, some wooden sticks and paper flowers to glue the cards onto.
The chicest desk organizer
Keeping track of who's turned in their homework assignments is tough enough. Help your child's teacher stay organized with this chic desk organization set that holds all her classroom essentials.
Copper magnetic desk set, $34.99 at The Container Store
Next: Hand lotion set
A version of this article was originally published in April 2016.
Fancy hand lotion
Grading papers, thumbing through textbooks and tidying up classrooms takes a toll on teachers' hands. Give the gift of TLC with a darling set of hand creams like this collaboration between L'Occitane and Rifle Paper Co. If your kid's teacher isn't so much into the floral stuff, you can never go wrong with O'Keeffe's Working Hands Hand Cream (or it's $7 price tag).
Rifle Paper Co. for L'Occitane hand cream trio, $29 at Sephora
Easy-to-keep-alive desk plants
Who doesn't love succulents? They're adorable, and unlike your kid, they take minimal effort to maintain. Plus, you can dress them up in a sweet arrangement, like these hexagonal pots.
Decorative hexagon ceramic planters, $17.99 at Amazon
Next: Coffee gift set
Coffee, coffee, coffee
A gift set like this one from Blue Bottle is a great way to give the teachers in your life an extra kick while letting them sample some of the finest beans around.
Blend Box, $35 at Blue Bottle Coffee
Say it with flowers
Fact: People love fresh-cut flowers. Because seasonal florals can be a bit on the pricey side, consider going in on the cost with another parent. For something extra special, tie a note around the arrangement that reads, "Thanks for helping us grow." If you're in San Diego, California, you can purchase a similar bouquet to the one shown above at Native Poppy.
Medium flower wrap, $50 at Native Poppy
Next: Bath salts
Sylvia Plath had the right idea when she said, "There must be quite a few things that a hot bath won't cure, but I don't know many of them." Treat your kid's teacher to a luxurious soak with some sweet-smelling bath salts, like French Girl's Sea Soak in rose and ylang-ylang.
Sea Soak, $18 at French Girl
Double-duty marble wine cooler/vase
No one likes drab flowers or white wine that's room temp, but everyone appreciates the freedom of choice. This beautiful marble vessel doubles as both a wine cooler and a flower vase so the teacher in your life can have it while also being the envy of every houseguest.
French kitchen marble wine cooler, $24.95 at Crate & Barrel
Next: One Line a Day journal
One Line a Day journal
Kids really do say the darndest things. Help your favorite teacher keep track of all of the funny stuff he hears in class with a One Line a Day journal, where he can document five years' worth of silly quotes. Bonus: He can pull this book out for a laugh on the tough days.
One Line a Day journal, $16.95 at Paper Source
Chic metal calendar
It's true what they say. Time flies! For the teacher who wants to stay up to date and loves a bit of shine but isn't huge on wasting paper, consider this gold calendar.
Gold monthly calendar, $19.99 at The Container Store
Next: Insulated coffee mug
The. Best. Insulated coffee mug
For those early mornings, teachers will appreciate an insulated coffee mug to keep their cup of joe just as hot as when they poured it for hours on end. You can't go wrong with this travel mug from Contigo that comes in a variety of colors.
Contigo stainless steel travel mug, $19.99 at Amazon
A desk sign that's good for laughs
This sign is a fun option for the teacher with a sense of humor.
"I Became a Teacher for the Money and Fame" desk sign, $4.95 at Paper Source
Next: Decorative globe
The prettiest globe
There's something so official-looking about a desk decorated with a globe. While many options can be expensive, this small one from Target is as affordable as it is sophisticated.
Desktop globe, $14.99 at Target
While not the sexiest option, gifting books for the classroom is a wonderful way to thank a teacher and help his future students. Depending on the teacher and the grade, these books could be easy reads for story time or curriculum textbooks. Don't feel shy about asking your child's teacher which materials he needs for the upcoming school year.
Next: Detox set
A detox set
Working in a classroom isn't always the most glamorous gig. For one thing, you're always surrounded by germs. This detox set from Little Seed Farm comes with a charcoal scrub and soap that's guaranteed to fight off pesky bacteria and have teachers feeling so fresh (and so clean, clean).
Little Seed Detox Set, $25 at West Elm
A luxe pedicure
Speaking of clean, when was the last time you kicked off your shoes and pampered your toes? A gift card for a pedicure is a luxurious way to thank any teacher in your kid's life.
A complimentary (literally) journal
You can never have too many journals — or too much of an ego boost.
"Best Teacher Ever" journal, $14.95 at Paper Source
Personalized school lunch tote
Just because they teach elementary school kids doesn't mean they have to eat like them. These canvas lunch bags are a grown-up alternative to a paper sack. And because they're coated with beeswax, they're water resistant too, which comes in handy in a classroom full of spills.
Canvas lunch boxes, $24 at WAAMIndustries/Etsy
Next: Passport holder
A passport holder, because summer break
Every teacher deserves a vacation. What better way to help get the ball rolling on their next one than with a fashionable yet sturdy passport carrier? This option from Fossil is adorable, but there are plenty of holders in neutral colors out there if you're unsure about your kid's teacher's style.
Leather passport case, $26.97 at Nordstrom Rack
A really, really good candle
When in doubt, purchase a candle as a gift. At least that's my motto; and in my experience, Volcano from Capri Blue has always been a home run.
Capri Blue candle in Volcano, $14.50 at Amazon
Next: Trinket dish
A trinket dish with initial
A trinket dish is a cute addition to a teacher's desk. The personalized stamp on this small white bowl with gold trim makes this gift extra sweet.
Initial trinket dish, $10 at CiaraJCo/Etsy
A metal to-do list, of course
Notepads are great, but there's nothing like a metallic metal to catch your eye and ensure that you actually cross things off of your to-do list.
Bronzed to-do board, $15 at Anthropologie