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Teacher Appreciation Week -- Celebrate All Year!

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This week -- May 7 through 11 -- is Teacher Appreciation Week. (Some schools might have celebrated last week; one of my boys' schools did, due to confusion about what "first week in May" meant.) I really appreciate what parents at Bridger have done, coordinating muffin baking for the teachers' breakfast one day and other fun events. And a big bouquet of lilacs was enough to make one group of teachers' Monday; I highly suggest such a simple, pretty, great-smelling gift (and there are lots of overgrown lilacs in alleys and parking strips... don't they deserve their chance to shine?). Calendula and lavender are going bonkers in front yards right now, and they make a beautiful bouquet. My seven-year-old's teacher is a huge fan of dark chocolate, so I'll pick up a few extra bars of my favorite at People's (it's even on sale this week): Equal Exchange Panama.

We've got a great round-up of teacher's favorite gifts here (from the winter holidays; obviously there will be more options now!). I'd love to hear about innovative and simple ideas like muffin baking and a potluck lunch for teachers hosted by the PTA. And this is your official reminder! Remember that teachers tell us over and over again that their favorite gifts are simple notes of appreciation. Remember, too, that this is a good time to pull your teacher aside and learn a little something about him so that you'll be able to tailor the perfect token of your gratitude for their dedication. Don't forget about the administrators, librarians, art teachers, and the like.

And, since we're also talking about whether teachers will keep their jobs this year (as we seem to do so often) -- though we can thank Sam Adams for proposing to provide cash to keep from the worst cuts Portland Public Schools was planning for next year (thank you Sam! maybe we should send him muffins too) -- Teacher Appreciation Week will be ending with a very large rally and march called "Get Upset!" to protest continued "austerity," shall we say, in school budgets. It's starting at 3:30 p.m. Friday, May 11, in the Rose Quarter.

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