Book Fetish

13 Fun Back-to-School Gifts for Teachers (Or Anyone Who Works in Schools!)

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Ashlie Swicker


Ashlie (she/her) is an educator, librarian, and writer. She is committed to diversifying the reading lives of her students and supporting fat acceptance as it intersects with other women’s issues. She's also perpetually striving to learn more about how she can use her many privileges to support marginalized groups. Interests include learning how to roller skate with her local roller derby team, buying more books than she'll ever read, hiking with her husband and sons, and making lists to avoid real work. You can find her on Instagram (@ashlieelizabeth), Twitter (@mygirlsimple) or at her website,

If you work in a school, you know that being tired and overwhelmed is pretty much a way of life. The last few years of teaching through a global pandemic and managing the expectations of society against what we think is best for children has sparked a mass exodus from the profession. And it was hard before 2020! Teachers are trying to deal with trauma in the form of lost loved ones, lost experiences, lost milestones, all while guiding children who have experienced the same and dealing with unthinkable pressure to “catch up.”  All this to say, educators deserve presents. Someone get these educators some presents.

Back-to-school season is so interesting as an educator. Once the year is really going full swing, crisis management is the first priority. There is never not a crisis. It’s only really in the lead up to the actual school year that things like aesthetics and presentation get a lot of focus. This is the time that teachers dream up bulletin boards and plan out decorative themes. This also happens to be the time that 90% of the teachers you know are reaching deep into their own pockets to craft comfortable and appealing learning environments. It’s a lot of work! It’s also exciting and optimistic. Anything feels possible! It’s time to think about pretty and funny and punny! Especially after the last few years, this is one of the highest points of the school year cycle, and it needs to be celebrated.

Whether you are someone looking to encourage a teacher in your life, or an educator looking to treat yourself, you’re in the right place. Below I’ve gathered some great back-to-school gifts for adults looking to showcase their teacher swag. Seriously, someone get these educators some presents.

To Wear

little miss back to school shirt

Mirroring the latest meme trend, this Little Miss Welcome Back To School shirt is available in many colors and up to size 3XL. $12+

Alphabet Kindergarten Teacher Shirt dark blue with flowers

Perfect for people working with young children, this floral alphabet shirt is available in many colors. Sizes start at baby and extend to extra large. $17+

Teaching Reading is Rocket Science shirt dark gray with white letters

A truer statement has not been shared. Reading teachers, show off your skills with this Teaching Reading is Rocket Science shirt. Comes in numerous styles and colors, and sizes range from youth to 4XL. $24+

eight personalized ID badge lanyard with assorted beads and tassel attachments

These lanyards are a stylish and personalized way to display your ID badge or keep your classroom door key close. This would be thoughtful gift for an educator in your life, or a back to school pick me up for yourself! $25

For the Desk

book lovers stickers pack of 50 assorted

Stickers have always been close to many bookish hearts, but they are making a huge resurgence among students. Use this pack of book lover stickers for classroom rewards or save them for yourself! $4 for 10 or $9 for 40.

reading things sticker stranger things logo with books

Chances are you’ve seen it, and some of your students have, too. Bring the hype of Stranger Things to school with this Reading Things vinyl sticker. $4

its a good day to read a book sticker

An evergreen statement on a cute sticker! Slap this on your water bottle, laptop, clipboard, or laptop to remind yourself and your students to Drop Everything And Read. $3

Book Nerd Pencil Set set of five in pastel colors

Nothing says back to school like specialty pencils, and the classic gold font on this Book Nerd Pencil Set produces the perfect dose of nostalgia mixed with current catchphrases. $10 for 5

Travel Mugs

Personalized librarian tumbler with book and flowers

Personalized back-to-school gifts are so fun, and also helpful when an inevitably frazzled educator leaves their travel mug behind. This tumbler comes in many colors and has space for one name. $23

read return repeat tumbler white with pastel block letters

Give your school librarian some love with this simple and impactful travel mug. Read, return, repeat is the goal! $34

Teacher affirmations tumbler with with pastel bubbles containing affirmations written in black text

I cannot gush enough about this affirmations mug. I love the colors, the quirky doodles, and more than anything, the first person phrases that uplift. Do not wait for a back to school gift. Buy this for yourself. $20

If you’re trying to squeeze in some professional development before school starts, you might also be interested in 8 Great Teacher Books to Ease Educators Back to School.