This year’s Christmas gifts for Darwin’s teachers and nursery staff have been sanded, lacquered and finished with all the fine details needed. This year we have made each of the six keyworker staff a personalised pencil box and a matching tree decoration of wood.
The special detail for this year’s Christmas gifts to the teachers is that they will be personalised with my little boy’s handwriting. This past term at nursery and home we have been working a lot on encouraging Darwin’s reading and writing skills, so we thought that this would make a nice permanent reminder of the wonderful gift that learning to read and write brings.
I bought blank wooden bauble decorations and pencil boxes, painted the baubles with a simple red acrylic, leaving a central plain stripe, and lacquered both the baubles and pencil boxes with three coats of spray lacquer. The lacquer serves several functions; to protect the wood, to enhance the grain, and to provide a nice, smooth, non-porous surface for the vinyl decoration to stick to.
To decorate both gifts I got Darwin to write he name of each member of staff on the iPad using the Apple pencil (stylus) with a stroke weight that I thought would cut well from the vinyl. I converted this into an .SVG file using Adobe Illustrator and simply scaled this to a couple of millimetres shorter than the surface areas that they would be decorating. Using the attach function on the Cricut software I was able to preserve Darwin’s letter spacing and letter alignment exactly as written.
We always try to make a gift that somehow reflects the positive impact that the staff and teachers have on childrens’ lives, to show our gratitude for the work and efforts they make in their job. Hopefully these little personalised boxes of thanks will be well received as Darwin was being careful to write as nicely as he could, so the giving of the gift means a lot to him, as well.
Do you have a teacher gift to buy, make or give this year? What ideas are you considering?