They inspire curiosity and a lifelong love of learning. They’re experts at boosting confidence through the right mix of motivation and instruction. They serve alternately as student-squabble mediator, supportive listener, and all-around problem fixer. And in the past couple of years, they persevered despite the challenges thrown their way amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
National Teacher Appreciation Week is a chance to thank educators for all they do to ensure that students succeed in school and in life. Check out our ideas for celebrating Teacher Appreciation Week remotely.
Virtual Teacher Appreciation Ideas During COVID-19
Below you'll find ideas on how administrators, parents, students, and even teachers can show gratitude for educators—during Teacher Appreciation Week and all year long. But first, take a moment to reflect on teacher greatness. Third-grade teacher Mike Bertram from South Plainfield, New Jersey, perfectly captures in a poem just how powerfully teachers across the country tackled all the pandemic challenges that came their way.
Take a listen to him reciting his ode to teachers in the video below, then share it far and wide as you honor the educators in your life.
Appreciating Teachers During the Pandemic
Ways Administrators Can Thank Teachers
Show Your Support
Saying you support your teachers is great. Demonstrating your support is even more powerful. Here are some ideas:
- Don't have the budget for a gift card to help teachers get the resources they need for a class project? Offer to write a grant to fund the project through DonorsChoose.
- Give teachers a break. Take over a teacher’s virtual lesson for one class period. Or, hold a town hall meeting with the class to gauge how kids are doing, how their school
- Start a fund to help pay for teachers to attend workshops and conferences.
- Hold a virtual town hall with teachers. Ask them to share challenges they face, how they are working to overcome them, and what you might do to lighten their load.
Launch a Thank-You Campaign
Start a video campaign to thank teachers in your school or district. Begin by posting a call for “thank-you” videos on your school’s website, Facebook page, or Instagram or Twitter account. Your invitation might read something like this: Have a teacher who inspires you? It’s time to let that person know. Record yourself or your child thanking a teacher. Use these prompts if you’re having trouble getting started:
- Thank you, (Teacher’s Name), for ______ .
- (Teacher’s Name) made a big difference in my life by ______ .
- Thanks to (Teacher’s Name), I’m now able to ______ .
Ask those submitting videos to include the hashtag #ThankATeacher when posting their video to social media.
Ways Parents and Students Can Thank Teachers
Give Teachers a Shout-Out
The COVID-19 pandemic has given caregivers everywhere an up-close look at the relentless and often thankless job of educators. Take a cue from TV and film writer Shonda Rhimes, who showed her appreciation for educators in this tweet:
Been homeschooling a 6-year old and 8-year old for one hour and 11 minutes. Teachers deserve to make a billion dollars a year. Or a week. — shonda rhimes (@shondarhimes) March 16, 2020
Let your children’s teachers know you recognize their hard work. Give them a shout-out on the school’s Facebook page or on another social media platform. Your message could point out something you admire about teachers and their work from home, or it might describe one way the teacher has helped your child.
Write a Thank-You Note, Poem, or Song
Talk with your children about teachers. Ask: Why do we need teachers? How do they help us? What makes their job difficult? Why do you think someone might choose to become a teacher? Then have them think about a particularly inspirational teacher. Ask: What makes this teacher inspirational? How did he or she inspire you? What could you thank this teacher for?
Have younger students complete the sentence: Thank you, (Teacher’s Name), for _______. Then draw a picture to accompany the note. You could post a photo of the note (or your child holding up the note) on social media or mail it to the teacher.
Older students could write a thank-you letter, poem, or song. If they need help getting started, answering these questions might help:
- What is one way your teacher has helped or inspired you?
- What are you now able to do thanks to your teacher’s help or inspiration?
- What do you wish for your teacher’s future?
Ways Teachers Can Celebrate Each Other
Pass It On
That classroom management trick that works every time? That simple strategy for helping students understand fractions? Teachers aren’t reinventing the wheel. They’re borrowing best practices from each other. Why not share the best tip or advice you ever got from a fellow teacher on social media?
Honor Your Favorite Teacher
Which teachers from your childhood sparked your curiosity, made you love math, supported your interests, or listened to your concerns? Track those teachers down and send an email or letter describing how they impacted your life. If you can’t find an address, give them a shout-out on social media using the hashtag #ThankATeacher.
Thank you for igniting my love for reading in 4th Grade, Ms. Bowman! Because of you, I got hooked on authors like Blume and Cleary and wanted to read all the chapter books in a series! You made me feel loved. #HMHLovesTeachers #TeacherApprecationWeek pic.twitter.com/kWhsWYPf4K — Amy Zagora (@amyzagora) May 8, 2018
Happy Teacher Appreciation Week!
If you have any additional virtual Teacher Appreciation Week 2022 ideas, please share them with us on Twitter (@HMHCo) or email us at Shaped@hmhco.com.