An A+ Guide to Shopping the Seacoast for 2021 Teacher Gifts


As you put together gifting lists this year, top names should include your child’s teacher. They certainly deserve priority slots for thoughtfulness! A great tip is to shop local and skip the stress over shipping delays. With these great local finds, we promise you will score an A+ in the subject of 2021 teacher gifts!

Teachers are special people. They have the biggest, caring hearts! They also tend to have specific hobbies.

With a little thought, it is easy to find gifts beyond a generic mug or candle. If feasible, make teacher gift shopping a fun event with your child – grab lunch, put away devices, and spend time together! Ask your child what they know about their teacher. Do they have a pet? Children? Interesting hobbies they refer to in class? 

Take a few tidbits of personal info and couple it with the suggestions for local shopping spots on the Seacoast. You will be wrapping your 2021 teacher gifts in no time! 

  1. Gift consumables. Teachers receive a lot of small gifts, so how about something they will use? Pop into Kilwins for chocolates, or check out the Tea and Spice Exchange for something even a non-cook would enjoy, like popcorn seasoning! You can’t go wrong with a bag of local roasted coffee from Port City Roasters or La Mulita.
  2. Gift comfort and warmth. ‘Tis the season for cold temps! Recess duty and teaching classes outside means cold noses and toes. Evie is a cute Portsmouth boutique with beautiful scarves and hats. Unsure of style? Opt for a pair of Smartwool socks from the selection at Footnotes. An extra winter hat or gloves are helpful to have on hand too! Speaking of, all the hand washing and sanitizer makes for very dry ones! Quality hand creams and boutique items can be found at making faces or janegee
  3. Gift the pets. Is the teacher a dog or cat lover? Canine Cupboard has gifts for furry friends. Off Piste, “the coolest gift shop in the history of forever” has quirky, humorous gifts, some of which are designed for pet lovers. Same goes for Marco Polo.
  4. Gift a gift that gives! Try a gift card for local lunch spots like Laney and Lu Cafe in Exeter and the Fresh House in Portsmouth! Or for the homebody, a board game or puzzle from Diversions will provide hours of cozy fun. Gus and Ruby holiday ornament
  5. Gift a unique addition to holiday decor. My daughter found an adorable pencil ornament at Gus and Ruby. Tendercrop Farm in Dover has lovely farmhouse style gifts to pick up along with groceries and visits to the animals. 
  6. Gift reading. Riverrun Bookstore, Portsmouth Book & Bar, or Water Street Bookstore in Exeter are great venues to peruse, and gift cards are guaranteed to be spent. Winter break is an ideal time to decompress with a bestseller! Or if you know the teacher’s interests, treat them to a gorgeous coffee table book. 

Asked on repeat in social media groups: What is the number one gift all teachers want? The answer is….a heartfelt, hand written note! If you are short on cash or ideas, more than anything else, your child’s teacher will truly love a personal card. Teachers are sentimental by nature, and any gesture of good tidings at the holidays will be a treasure!

Happy local shopping! Remember, when you shop locally, you make a difference in the lives of your neighbors. 

Previous articleHow to Survive a Road Trip With Young Kids
Next articleThe 2021 Seacoast Gift Guide for Foodies
A NH native, Carolyn Prien spent 15 years in NYC and Boston as an elementary teacher and independent school administrator. When her oldest was a year old, she and her husband Justin made the decision to move back to where they could be at the beach or the mountains easily – why choose? Now a mama to three energetic girls, ages 6, 4, and 2, Carolyn spends her days trying to stay in the “thrive” zone with her family as opposed to the “survive” zone. She works part time at the NH Literacy Institutes at UNH and is inspired by the teachers and professors who are equally passionate about education. Nearby grandmothers are her crutch, along with running, her backyard, a minivan, and shameless online shopping. She is always in the middle of a book, because sometimes at the end of the day she just needs to read in silence.