If you’re a millennial, preschool seems like a millennium ago, middle school a bad dream, and high school is the “good ol’ days”. And, while you may never forget those epic senior week parties a la American Pie, your increasing maturity makes you remember the more important parts of your education: Your awesome teachers.
This week is Teacher Appreciation Week, so take a moment and remember those adults who made you who you are today. These days, an apple just doesn’t cut it (unless it’s the Steve Jobs type) so here are a few alternative, do-good options:
1) Enable your teacher to make another type of investment with a micro-loan for a borrower who otherwise would not have access to capital. With a Kiva Gift Card your fave teacher can pay your appreciation forward. Bonus: you can print out a customizable card and send it by post if you’re feeling nostalgic for snail mail.
2) Gather your old buds and sponsor a Pencils of Promise fundraiser in the name of your teacher. Started by the incredibly inspiring Adam Braun, Pencils of Promise builds sustainable schools in developing countries and has made NGO’s sexy-cool.
3) See if your teacher posted a request on DonorsChoose.org, a site that crowdsources funding for teachers’ classroom needs like projectors, science equipment and … puppets. If they don’t need anything, tell them to pick a project close to their heart and you can put some dough behind it!
4) Teachers love to learn, too. Buy them a class at Skillshare and let them explore their own extracurricular activities, from art, to coding, to cooking.
5) More teachers are integrating technology into their teaching and classroom management. Why not bundle these fab apps for educators and give them everything they need to inspire more students like yourself?
6) Perhaps the best way to honor your teacher is to become one yourself. You’re young, you’ve gone back to school, and you’re looking to make an impact on the world ... but, you don’t have an education background. No fear, Education Pioneers is an innovative organization that attracts top talent across law, public policy, and business to put their skills towards transforming America’s education system. The 2012 cycle has closed, so you have time to think about your career change before the 2013 applications are due.