Let’s Celebrate Teachers!

The 2012 observance of National Teacher Appreciation Week is May 7-11.  During this week, students are encouraged to find some small way to say “thanks” to their teachers.  Often school clubs and parent groups sponsor some type of event to let teachers know that they are appreciated. There may be a rose for teachers’ desks, or a special goody bag of treats.  Though there are now greeting cards that honor teachers, I think the best remembrance is a card penned and illustrated by students.  It’s much more sincere.  Perhaps teachers can actually get in on the fun, and ask students to read books that have strong teacher characters.


  • Public libraries might consider sponsoring a teacher night.  This is a good time to honor them, as well as let them know about your services.
  • Public and school libraries might display books with strong teacher characters.
  • Librarians could also put a bibliography of books with teacher characters on their website.
  • Teachers and librarians should engage readers in a discussion about the strengths of the fictional teacher in any of the books students select to read.
  • Make a card that the main character of a book might give to his/her teacher during National Teacher Appreciation Week.
  • Write an essay called “My Favorite Teacher” from the viewpoint of a main character.
  • Nominate a fictional teacher for Teacher of the Year.  Include what makes them an outstanding and innovative teacher.
  • Write a feature story for a newspaper called “What Makes a Good Teacher.”  Interview fictional teachers, and include quotes from their students.
  • Recommend a book to a teacher (based on what they teach or their special interests).
  • Make a bookmark for a teacher that features an illustration of a favorite book.
  • Make a placemat that illustrates a favorite book for the teacher to use in the cafeteria during Teacher Appreciation Week.
  • Have readers create an advertisement for the local newspaper for Teacher Appreciation Week.
  • Sponsor a writing competition called “How to make Everyday Teacher Appreciation Day.”
  • Have readers write a letter to a teacher telling them what they’ve learned most during the school year.


Suggested books from Random House include:

Junie B. Jones #18: First Grader (at last)  (ages 6-8) by Barbara Park & illus. by Denise Brunkus

Marvin Redpost #4: Alone in His Teacher’s House (ages 6-9) by Louis Sachar & illus. by Barbara Sullivan

The Beast in Ms. Rooney’s Room (ages 6-9) by Patricia Reilly Giff & illus. by Blanche Sims

The Candy Corn Contest (ages 6-9) by Patricia Reilly Giff & illus. by Blanche Sims

Alice-Miranda at School (ages 7-10) by Jacqueline Harvey

Gooney Bird Greene (ages 7-10) by Lois Lowry

The Fabled Fourth Graders at Aesop Elementary School & The Fabled Fifth Graders at Aesop Elementary School (ages 7-11) by Candace Fleming

The Magical Ms. Plum (ages 8-11) by Bonny Becker & illus. by Amy Portnoy

Miami Jackson Sees It Through (ages 6-9) by Patricia and Frederick McKissack & illus. by Michael Chesworth

Miss Brooks Loves Books (And I Don’t) (ages 6-8) by Barbara Bottner & illus.Michael Emberley

Counting on Grace (ages 8-12) by Elizabeth Winthrop

Faith, Hope and Ivy June (ages 9-12) by Phyllis Reynolds Naylor

Fourth Grade Weirdo (ages 9-12) by Martha Freeman

Child of the Mountains (ages 10-up) by Marilyn Sue Shank

The Fruit Bowl Project (ages 10-up) by Sarah Durkee

The Mighty Miss Malone (ages 10-up) by Christopher Paul Curtis

Moon Over Manifest (ages 10-up) by Clare Vanderpool

Scat (ages 10-up) by Carl Hiaasen

When You Reach Me (ages 9-12) by Rebecca Stead

Burning Up (ages 12-up) by Caroline B. Cooney

Evolution, Me and Other Freaks of Nature (ages 12-up) by Robin Brande

How to Get Suspended and Influence People (ages 12-up) by Adam Selzer

Ringside, 1925 (ages 12-up) by Jen Bryant

Sarny (ages 12-up) by Gary Paulsen

Random House Teachers and Librarians