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15 Ways to Recognize Teachers: Teacher Appreciation Week & Beyond

15 Ways to Recognize Teachers: Teacher Appreciation Week & Beyond

Education Elements  |  Teacher Retention  |  School Leadership

Teachers have a tremendous impact on the learning and lives of their students and communities, and planning a unique and powerful teacher appreciation week is one way to celebrate their incredible contributions. School and district leaders can use the strategies below as a starting point to plan meaningful ways to recognize all that they do, every day.

When is teacher appreciation week in 2024?

Teacher Appreciation Week is May 6-10, 2024. It's fast approaching and this is the perfect time to plan for how you'll celebrate your teachers during the official appreciation week, and beyond.

Tips for choosing the right teacher appreciation strategies

  • Find a way to gather data from your teams about what would make them feel the most appreciated–this could be as simple as a survey asking teachers directly or a brainstorming session with leaders who know your teachers the best.
  • Get insights from your larger community to leverage their strengths and expertise--This is a great way to tap into the resources you already have to show appreciation to your teachers!
  • Beyond Teacher Appreciation Week, consider how you will continue to plan opportunities to provide support, recognition, and positive experiences for your teachers and broader school community.

Here are 15 tangible ways you can support teachers for Teacher Appreciation Week 2024 and beyond:

Support: Providing learning opportunities, acts of service, and/or resources that are uniquely tailored to teachers’ needs and interests.

  • Teach or co-plan one of your teacher’s lessons
  • Provide teachers with a unique school or district professional development opportunity or 1-1 coaching experience
  • Offer teachers a learning experience of their choice--newsletter subscription, online course, resource budget, etc.
  • Offer to cover a teachers lunch/recess/arrival/dismissal duty, so they can enjoy a few moments to catch up on planning or take a moment to breathe

Appreciate teachers year round teacher appreciation week 2023

Experiences: Provide opportunities for teachers to connect and enjoy each other's company

  • Host a teacher breakfast, luncheon, or after school gathering
  • Surprise interruption: bring a smoothie/coffee/ice cream cart, rolling by classrooms. The act of surprise is one teachers always enjoy!
  • Organize themed days to create Teacher Appreciation Spirit Week --consider teacher participation in selecting themes
  • Organize a Teacher Appreciation Car Parade
  • Host a variety of wellness sessions before and afterschool. You may even consider making some virtual so teachers can join from home!  - meditation, yoga, exercise class, cooking class, etc. --consider enlisting community members to lead various offerings!

Recognition: Acts of gratitude, appreciation, and praise that celebrate the unique strengths,contributions, and accomplishments of teachers.

  • Host an awards show; consider having students/teachers/community members contribute nominations
  • Public praise. Celebrate specific accomplishments through shout-outs on twitter or signs outside the classroom door.
  • Private praise. Send in a  handwritten note, email or simply pick up the phone to thank a teacher. Share a specific example of impact.
  • Celebrate personal accomplishments/life events such as weddings, babies, birthdays, marathon or other sporting events, etc.

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Community Involvement: Engaging members of the community (students, families, broader members of the school district, community partners) to participate in and contribute to celebrating teachers.

  • Praise from a student. Film a video, take a picture, capture student quotes, prompt students to share gratitude. Include students in celebrating teachers’ successes to emphasize the impact they have each day.
  • Send a survey to school community with teacher names listed and a request for one word of praise--make a word cloud of results and send to each person.

More Ideas for National Teacher Appreciation Week and Beyond

As you plan to thank teachers next week, consider consistent ways to celebrate them beyond Teacher Appreciation Week. We previously published the 40 Ways to Celebrate Teachers and Teacher Impact which explores consistent celebrations and their role in impacting teacher retention including:

  1. What impact can consistent celebrations have at my school? 
  2. What steps can I take to focus on consistent celebrations at my school?
  3. What are some concrete ways I can celebrate teachers at my school? 
  4. When are some key times to celebrate teachers at my school?

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