My daughter started Middle School this year and I am trying to plan ahead for all of our Holiday giving. Do I give a gift to each of her teachers? That would make 7 teachers.
We gave presents for teachers in preschool and Grammar school, but stopped in Middle School unless there was a teacher who was really special to any of my children. I used to often bake quick breads for gifts and busy teachers said they were always happy to have a day or two of breakfast and snacks for their families. On occasion I did purchase gifts for teachers.
But, when my kids got into Middle School, it was expensive to buy presents and a huge work load to my baking to bake seven or eight more breads or batches of cookies. You can maybe bake a big batch of cookies or a cake or quick bread and make sure it gets into the teacher's lounge, and make one for the people in the office, too. I do this a lot, I get bakery boxes and fill them with cookies or bake a few breads and make sure they get to the places where the teachers, principal and other staff will find them.
Also, my kids asked me NOT to buy presents for their teachers in Middle School. "Mo-oom. nobody does that!" They didn't seem to object to the baked treats for the whole staff, though.
I'd ask your dd what she wants to do. It seems like MS is the time many families stop giving teacher gifts. Both of my dds have wanted to give their teachers gifts in MS however, so we do. We usually make a huge batch of spiced nuts and put them in individual jars w/a nice ribbon tied around it. Sometimes my girls have wanted to bake cookies to go along with the nuts. I think at this age your dd is old enough to help make a gift if she wants to give it, or do it all herself if she so desires. Last year my oldest gave all of her teachers little lanterns. She filled jars w/colored sand, added a candle, and attached a wire loop to the top for a handle. Very cute, inexpensive, useful and different.
My DC has had a community of teachers since 2nd grade. I think we did gifts for her core subject teachers for at least one year but then I got tired of all the collections. In DC's small school it was just too much. They participated in community outreach, fundraising, teacher appreciation week, charity, you name it! Gifts at the holiday season/end of the year was just too much and, honestly, after getting a beautifully written thank you note from one of her teachers, I started to wonder if teachers even appreciated the trade-off of having to show gratitude for all these token gifts.
My DC is new to middle school this year and I don't know what the expectations from the community are. Thanks for the reminder!
I suppose at this new school we may go with the flow for this first year. I hope our class parent arranges a collection for a group gift - which I think is preferable to 23 $5 gifts. ;-)
There are two teachers in each of my son's academic classrooms. Last year, my son made origami gifts for the main teachers and a couple of the aides (and one for the principal and nurse.)
He may want to make something this year but only one staff member sent a thank you so I don't think they appreciated his gift (even though the gifts were actually really nice.)
I'm not sure what we are going to do this year. We may go with jewelry tags for the lead teachers. They're good for men/women so it would be pretty easy.