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I have been the new teacher (or staff member) several times, and no matter what it’s never fun. I even returned to a building for a second time and was still incredibly nervous and felt out of place for quite some time. Teachers aren’t always the most welcoming at the beginning of the year, even if we’re the nicest people- we’re busy getting our rooms ready, putting names on eight hundred million items, cleaning up the mess from the summer, unpacking from the summer, sweltering in the heat… I digress. New teachers, including the new-to-your-building teachers, are walking in stressed, probably busier than you are because they also have to do all of the above on top of learning everything new, and are feeling a certain amount of apprehension about the situation. They’re wondering who is going to help them out and show them where the staff bathroom is. They’re wondering if they are going to get along well with their grade level partners. They’re wondering if things are going to be managed differently in this building than the building they student taught at or that they were at before (newsflash: they will be different). Because of these reasons, it’s great when a grade level, or a committee like a Sunshine Committee, can welcome these staff members with a little something. Sure, something that all of the new people get isn’t the most special, but it does show that you took that step to do something for them; to make them feel wanted. Here are some of my favorite ideas.
Every teacher needs help taming the paper beast. Brand new teachers often struggle immensely with this. One little way to help them out is by giving them clips to help them maintain and manage their piles. Use an Elmer’s Painters Medium Tip Paint Markers on a painted clothespin to label each one “copy, grade, file”. Or, just use the Painters Paint Marker on a regular binder clip. You could even attach a little ribbon or string!
Use Sharpie Water Based Paint Markers on a piece of bathroom tile to create personalized, custom drink coasters. I buy the tiles in boxes and they are super cheap! I usually get the box of 100 for like $25 and then I use them in different projects in the classroom. Personalize the tiles with the staff member’s name and the school name and add a fun design. After the paint has dried, and it dries super quickly, spray a coat or two of clear coat to seal it and help protect it from condensation. Then, use some glue to place a piece of felt on the bottom to help keep the coaster gentle on surfaces. This is even a fun project to get student groups like student council involved in.
All teachers, well maybe not all teachers but pretty much every teacher I know, enjoys (I could probably use the word ‘love’ couldn’t I?) markers, colorful pens, etc. So they’re a great welcome gift with these cute sayings! Click any of the pictures below to download the free printable file.
PaperMate Ink Joy pens are my absolute favorite ballpoint pens! They guide very smoothly and the colors are vivid and bold. This time of year I can always find packs pretty inexpensively, like this one with a bonus pen. PaperMate has several varieties of Ink Joy pens, including clickable gel pens.
Paper Mate Flair Felt Tip Pens are virtually every teacher’s favorite! They are the perfect combination of pen and marker and are perfect for labeling and grading. Buy a pink one and give it with this cute “tickled pink” tag. The tag is perfect to give with a Pink Sharpie Fine Point Permanent Marker!
I love the colors that come in the Sharpie Color Burst Fine Point Permanent Markers (I also have and love them in the Ultra Fine Point Permanent Markers). The bright, vivid colors are the perfect addition to any teacher’s marker supply. And, because they’re a limited edition set, they may not be colors they already have.
You can download the free tags by clicking any of the links above or by clicking here: Teacher Welcome Gift Tags.
There are so many ways to welcome teachers into your building, whether it’s by lending a helping hand, giving a thoughtful gift, or just stopping in to check in on them. Whatever you’re able to do to help make them comfortable as a new addition to your staff is appreciated. Do you do something different in your building to welcome new teachers? I’d love to hear some new ideas in the comments below.
I received product and compensation from Go Teach! in exchange for this blog post. All opinions represented are my own, honest feelings about the product used.