Skip to content

Tips for Showing Your Appreciation for Paraprofessionals and Staff

A paraprofessional holding a clipboard next and next to medal.

At a Glance

Budget-Conscious Appreciation: Offer thoughtful gifts that are considerate of budget constraints, emphasizing personal touches over extravagance.

Personalized Gifts: Select items like gift cards, mugs, or craft supplies, tailored to the interests of paraprofessionals and staff.

Creative Expressions: Engage students in crafting unique handmade gifts or cards to express gratitude collectively.

As the holiday season approaches, we are coming up on the time when you may be starting to think about holiday gift giving. Gift giving is a great way to show our appreciation for the people who support us throughout the year, and many teachers share some small token of appreciation with their paraprofessionals and coworkers sometime during the holidays. The value of strong and supportive paraprofessionals and staff cannot be understated, and this is just one small way to express our appreciation.


Of course, it is also important for gifts to fit within our budget restraints and the emphasis should be on thoughtfulness rather than extravagant expense. So what kind of gifts might be a good idea for paraprofessionals or coworkers? Let’s dive into some options that should hopefully serve as helpful starting points informed by what you know about the people you work with!


In the meantime, if you’re interested in some fun and free gift tags to include with your present, check out our free resource in the AGU shop! With several printable gift card options you can print them out, write down the recipients’ names, and it’s time to gift! 

Holiday Gift Ideas for Paraprofessionals

Larger Items

If you primarily work with one paraprofessional, you may find it worthwhile to seek out a slightly higher budget gift than if you have several you work with. Understandably so as the cost of larger items can add up quickly across multiple people!

  • Gift cards
    • Food
      • Doordash/UberEats
      • Starbucks
      • Fun nearby sit down restaurants (Olive Garden, Cheesecake Factory, Applebees, etc.)
    • Specialty stores
      • TJ Maxx
      • Craft stores
      • Barnes and Noble
    • Open ended
      • Target
      • Amazon
      • Visa gift card
    • Local businesses
  • Mugs or tumblers
  • Fancy coffees or teas
  • High quality pens
  • A collection of fancy chocolate bars
  • Bath bombs
  • Cocoa bombs
  • Scented candles

Smaller Items for Groups

If you work with a number of paraprofessionals you may still want to show your appreciation but not have the budget to get a major gift for every single person. That is perfectly reasonable and you should not feel the need to stretch your budget beyond the breaking point just to perform a nice gesture. The thought is truly what counts! For smaller gifts, taking the extra time to include a special gift tag or personal note can be a great way to add a personal touch to a small practical gift.

  • Hand sanitizer
  • Face masks
  • Lip balm/chapstick
  • Small purchase gift card ($5 to a coffee shop or fast food restaurant for example)
  • Variety of chocolates/candies
  • Home-baked treats

Getting Crafty

One other wonderful way to show your thoughtfulness and involve your students is to craft something as a class! Whether students are making their own individual items or are each contributing in a small way to a single larger project, it is sure to be a sweet and wonderful moment when the class as a whole can show its appreciation for the staff who put in so much work for them throughout the year!

  • Jumbo greeting card
  • Handmade ornaments
  • Student drawings/paintings
  • Scrapbook with fun memories

At the end of the day there is no one set way to show your appreciation, and the best idea may depend on your resources and what you know about the individual/s you are gifting to. But we hope this list of options has offered some helpful jumping off points as well as shown there isn’t one set way to say “Thank you for all you’ve done!” this time of year. 


If you’d like to share your own gift ideas, feedback, or request topics for future blog posts we would love to hear from you! Just drop us a line at and we will be back next week at the usual time.

Green squiggly line to mark the end of the blog post
Previous article Life Skills IEP Goal Ideas
Next article Getting Administrative Buy In for a Classroom Business

Leave a comment

Comments must be approved before appearing

* Required fields