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Recognizing Educators

Celebrate Teachers All Year Long!

May 7, 2024

by: Krysten Maddocks

4 mins


Teachers do so much more than just teach. They engage young minds, opening a new world of learning to students. Particularly at the Pre-K−3 grade levels, teachers are often responsible for helping children form their first letters or sound out their first words. That’s why we help teachers reinforce letter recognition, hone handwriting, and support phonics skills all year long!

The path to literacy spirals out in one magic moment—when a child’s lines become language. They discover that lines form letters and that letters represent sounds. And when put together, they create words, which build into sentences. With each new skill, students unlock the endless possibilities of reading with the guidance of their teachers. 

How Did Teacher Appreciation Week Start? 

Teacher Appreciation Week takes place each May and recognizes educators for their amazing work year-round.  According to the National Education Association, National Teacher Day began in 1953 when former First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt asked Congress to establish a day of recognition for educators. Beginning in 1984, the National PTA established an annual Teacher Appreciation Week to take place during the first week in May. 

You can download a free Teacher Appreciation Toolkit that allows you to make thank you cards, coloring sheets, and fliers to show your appreciation for teachers throughout the year.

How Can I Showcase Teacher Appreciation This Month? 

By showing educators we understand the tireless effort and care they put into their jobs each day, we can help make their last month of school a little brighter. 

  • Fuel your teachers with yummy snacks. Administrators and parents can work with their PTA or similar group to set up a snack table in a central area of their school. Students can get involved by helping to bake their teachers’ favorite treats. 
  • Shower your teachers with recognition. Create a large display on your school lawn to bring attention to your teachers. Be as creative as you’d like! Include balloons, a colorful sign, and flowers. You can get students involved by having each child sign his or her name. If you can’t set up an outdoor display, bring your celebration to the classroom! Your teacher will be surprised and amazed to be welcomed with balloons, streamers, and colorful decorations. 
  • Donate classroom supplies. Teachers often are responsible for purchasing their own tissues, paper towels, paper, and other classroom items. Parents and administrators can organize a collection to get teachers the items they need. 
  • Simply say thank you. Who doesn’t love a homemade card that comes straight from the heart? Students can show how far they’ve come along with their drawing, writing, and coloring and express their appreciation for their teachers simultaneously. 

We Appreciate You! Here Are Some Tools You Can Use  

We’re especially thankful for educators responsible for teaching early learning, readiness, handwriting, and literacy skills to our youngest students. We’re excited to extend our appreciation with strategies that can help assist students with letter writing and recognition, handwriting practice, and phonics skills.

1. Make Writing Fun with Easy-to-Follow Handwriting Lessons 

Available for Pre-K−Grade 3, our Handwriting Starter Packs use strategies from Handwriting Without Tears’ developmentally based curriculum that works for children learning print and cursive. Download these free resources. 

2. Get Guided Pre-Literacy Lessons 

When children begin to understand the sounds that letters represent, they begin to take their first steps toward independent reading. With our A−Z for Mat Man® and Me Starter Packs, you can give students in Grades Pre-K−1 the resources they need to begin their reading journey. Download a free sample. 

3. Give Students Extra Letter Learning Practice 

Looking for extra letter-learning activities to reinforce understanding? Print out these little letter cards, and you’ll be set for tons of hands-on fun! Trace, color, and cut them out, and you have everything you need for a variety of activities. Make your own letter cards.

4. Integrated Digital Tools for Phonemic Awareness and Fluency Skills

Phonics, Reading, and Me™ is built on the belief that all students have the right to read. Some students may need extensive direct instruction, modeling, and repetition. But all students benefit from purposeful practice and a high volume of reading. See all that the Phonics, Reading, and Me Teacher Digital Tool equips you with, including resources for planning, teaching, and reporting—with this 30-day sample trial. Get a Digital Trial of Phonics, Reading, and Me. 

Thank you for all that you do! 

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