Teaching is hard work, let’s be honest. While it is a rewarding job, it can become emotionally draining. To look after yourself and your colleagues’ mental health is important. Here is just the thing to help relieve daily stress, build each other up AND this serves as a team-building effort of sorts- staff surprise days! Teachers are just big kids, and kids love surprises! So, why not have a teacher staff appreciation day where you surprise each other!
How it works: Every staff member that wants to participate (totally voluntarily) in this fun surprise idea picks a date written on a piece of paper in a container. (The organizer can decide if it should run over a week, a month, a term etc.). When it is your turn, you have to leave something small on that date, something you think will be appreciated by your fellow teachers, in the staff room for them to find when arriving at school. (Find ideas below)
Have a few guidelines to help keep this exercise fun:
- Have a list of participating teaching staff members up on the notice board so that the participants know how many to prep for.
- Items should not exceed X-amount per person to avoid it becoming an added expense or a competition. This could be discussed by the participating staff. Think dollar store/ home-made etc.
- It can be anonymous, perhaps at the end of the exercise people can guess which person did what, adding extra fun and wrapping it up.
- Add names to the gifts left in the teacher staff room to ensure each person receive their gift each time.
Encourage the teaching staff to be creative. Creativity lifts spirits and is a good way of relieving stress too! Add puns on cards(how corny ever it is), memes etc. to your surprise gift to make it interesting.
- Exotic/speciality Cappuccino sachet- “You are one special teacher!”
- Speciality tea bag: “You are TEA-rific!”
- Homemade cookies- “Made with love!”
- Mints- “Here is to a refreshing day!”
- Extra gum- “Have an EXTRA great day!”
- Sticky notes- “Thanks for sticking it out here!”
- Hand sanitizer- “You are the best, hands-down!”
- Any type of candy- “You are so sweet!”
- Highlighter pen- “You light up my life!”
- Sticky tape- “So glad I’m here stuck with you!”
- Fanta drink- “You are FANTAstic!”
- Hershey kisses- “Here is a kiss or two for you!”
- Fancy pen- “You are INK-credible!”
- Plant or flower from your garden- “Thanks for helping us grow!”
- Home-made magnet- “You are MAG-nificent”!
- Bath bomb- “Relax, you deserve it!”
A teacher staff appreciation surprise day is a great way to bring excitement to an ordinary working day plus lift spirits too!
Regards, Nadia van Zyl Editor @ TeachMeMommy