The holidays are quickly approaching, which means it’s time to start making your list and checking it twice. You don’t want to be stuck scrambling for presents on December 23. But some people are trickier to buy for than others!
One of those people is someone who’s in your life almost daily: your childcare provider. You and your kids would be lost without childcare. But what gift would your provider enjoy that also shows how much your family appreciates them?
We know it’s hard to think of the perfect gift. That’s why we did the heavy lifting by compiling this list of gift ideas. Your childcare provider is sure to love one of these 12 great gifts!
12 great gift ideas for childcare providers
1. Handmade gifts from your little ones
Your kids are a huge part of your childcare provider’s life. They’d love to get a handmade gift from the little ones in which they invest so much time. Just keep in mind that your provider may receive an abundance of crafts from the other kids in their care. Help your kids make something that’s both sentimental and useful, like a decorated mug or a painted flowerpot.
2. Craft supplies
Childcare providers are constantly burning through the craft supplies that keep kids busy on rainy days. Your provider would love having extra crayons, paper and glue on hand! Remember not to buy anything that could be a choking hazard for toddlers or infants. And don’t forget about non-traditional supplies like pipe cleaners or cotton balls!
3. A night out
Every parent knows how it feels to need a night out after a long week with the kids. Your childcare providers likely feel this way, too! Treat them to a fun night out by giving them a pair of tickets to an upcoming concert, theater production or movie. She’ll appreciate the chance to have some grown-up time!
Let’s face it: many childcare providers don’t earn a huge salary, even though they care for the most precious person in your life. A cash bonus during the holiday season is a great (and simple) way to show your provider that you see and appreciate all the hard work they so throughout the year. If you’re not completely comfortable giving cash, try a Visa or Amazon gift card instead.
5. Books or toys
All of that reading and playing takes a toll on their equipment. Many providers struggle to replace things that have worn out. New books or toys for all of the kids to share can be a huge blessing for your provider! Try to choose a variety of books that are suitable for a range of ages, and make sure toys are educational and not loud or irritating (you know the kind all too well!)
6. Personalized stationary
Childcare providers make plenty of lists to stay organized, and they’re always writing notes to parents to keep the lines of communication open. Why not give them something both pretty and functional for all of that writing? A cute stationary set might be just what your childcare provider needs to brighten her afternoon after a long day. If you want extra brownie points, personalize it with their name!
7. Housecleaning service
We all know how kids have a way of turning a clean house into a disaster zone in five minutes flat! Your childcare providers spend a lot of time cleaning up after the kids in their care. Why not give them a break during the holidays by hiring a housecleaning service? You can pay for the housecleaners to come once or twice, or even enlist other parents to chip in to cover the service throughout the year.
8. Grocery delivery
In-home childcare providers not only need to buy groceries for their own family but for the kids in their care, too! Meal planning and trips to the store can be stressful. Help them free up some time by giving a gift certificate to a local grocery delivery service!
Your childcare provider spends hours each day chasing after kids of all ages. As you can imagine – it’s exhausting! Give them a pick-me-up with a bag of gourmet coffee or a gift card to her favorite local coffee shop. If they have a single cup coffee brewer, wrap up a box of coffee pods. They’ll never deny an extra caffeine boost!
10. A personal gift
Is there a certain candle scent your childcare provider loves? Is the latest season of their favorite TV show out on DVD? It may take some time to find out what he or she likes, but more personal gifts like this show your provider that you think of them as a friend and not just an employee.
11. Your time
It’s hard work running after kids all day. Childcare providers love to have the help of another adult every now and then! Offer to help chaperone the next field trip or volunteer to read to the kids once a month. Small gestures like this can go a long way—and your kids will love seeing you stop by their daycare!
12. Flowers & a handwritten thank-you note
Childcare providers want to know they’re appreciated. A simple bouquet of flowers and a heartfelt note will go a long way toward showing your provider that you understand all the hard work they do and that you’re grateful for their presence in your children’s lives.
Choose a gift that shows you care
Your childcare provider plays an instrumental role in your kids’ lives. Thanks to these 12 holiday gift ideas, you can rest easy knowing that you’ve shown them just how much they mean to your family.
Are you a childcare provider? Send this list to your friends and family to give them some great gift ideas. Share any ideas we forgot to mention in the comments below!