At the end of every school year, families like to thank their children's teachers with gifts that are thoughtful. While gift cards are easy to purchase and can be found anywhere you shop, a gift given with the teacher in mind is an incredible way to say thank you for a wonderful year. After all, this person spends more time with your child each day than you do.

Finding the right gift is easy if you know a few things about your child's teacher. How can you find out what gifts would be greatly appreciated by her?

If you are an involved parent, chances are you already know some things the teacher likes from personal interactions with her or from tales from school that your child tells you when she gets home. Other parents whose children already had the teacher can also clue you into her personal likes.

For example, my students know that I am a huge Bon Jovi fan. I always had pictures of them with thought balloons with class rules around my classroom. Any kind of Bon Jovi gift would have been appreciated. This Bon Jovi Have a Nice Day ornament does not have to hang on a tree-it could be places anywhere in my classroom!

Teachers gifts that are thoughtful do not have to cost a lot of money at all. For example, during my early teacher years, I always wore my long hair tied back with a bow, that way you could see my long dangling earrings.

That year, one student bought me several hair bows and another bought me long earrings that I still wear today! Expensive, no. Thoughtful, YES!

Another year, one of my classes collected five dollars from each child. The parents bought me a gift certificate to a fancy restaurant, a set of movie passes, and cash to pay a babysitter so the entire night out was on them. Not only was it an incredibly thoughtful gift, it only cost each family five dollars! 

Movies are expensive! Treat your favorite teacher to one with a movie theater gift card in any denomination you choose!

When my twins' kindergarten teacher retired, the room moms sent emails to all of the families with suggestions for a themed gift. Since the teacher loved the beach and lived there in the summer, we bought her a large beach bag and filled it with magazines, suntan lotions, word puzzles, books, sunglasses, flip-flops, a beach mat and much more for her to use while relaxing.

As you can see, using the power of a small class collection can yield your child's teacher a gift that is thoughtful, useful and shows that you really care.

Another very simple and thoughtful gift for teachers is a thank you letter. It's nice to hear that your child had a wonderful year and what an influence you were to him or her. Even better, write this letter and send it to the principal and the superintendent. Let them know what a gem they have in their district. 

There are many ways to give teachers gifts that show your gratitude.