The last few terms have been challenging for children, parents and teachers alike, so as this final term draws to an end many of us will want to thank teachers for all the work they’ve done to help both pupils and parents during a time like no other.

Any gift from your child will be appreciated, and it’s certainly not about grand gestures — we don’t know any teacher who’d want parents to feel pressured into contributing to a class collection. Home-made cakes or arts and crafts aren’t the best option this year, so here’s our guide to gifts that will make teachers feel special:

Give thanks

If your child is back at school they’ll be able to say thank you in person, but as you’re unlikely to be seeing their teachers why not write a thank you card. Tell them what you and your child appreciate about them. It can be anything – helping your child settle in, helping them understand something they find tricky, or being really kind or funny!

You can help highlight the positive impact teachers and school leaders make in our society too by sending a free Pearson National Teaching Award thank a teacher card. Anyone can send a card; children, students, parents, grandparents and colleagues can all say thank you to a teacher, teaching assistant, headteacher or team.

Give the basics

We know that a growing number of schools now ask PTAs to fund classroom essentials like books, pencils and gluesticks. Some teachers even buy these basics from their own money so that their’ kids don’t go without. So if you want to buy a gift (individually or as a group) make it something practical that teachers can use with their class.

Give a little love

If you’d prefer (or your child really wants) to give a personal gift, then make it something that will bring their teacher a little light relief after a tough day. Some local shops as well as bigger companies are now offering e‑vouchers, so you could treat them to voucher for a cake and a coffee at a local café, some paper items or a bottle of wine, and don’t forget to add a personal note.

Give your backing

What better way to show your appreciation than to back your teachers by getting involved at school when you’re able to. If you know the school is struggling with funding you could rally parents to all write individually to your local MP. If teachers need extra help in the classroom, make a book of parent vouchers’ — each voucher promises an hour, half day or full day of volunteering time.

What do you think makes the best teacher gift and why? Share with us on Facebook and twitter @Parentkind.