Whether it's a friend with a teaching job, your child's teacher, or your own professor, you probably know at least one person who spends their days at a blackboard. May 3 is National Teacher Appreciation Day, so celebrate by getting a gift for your favorite educator.

1. RETRO PENS; $11

From hall passes to report cards, teachers have to do a lot of writing—so help them do it in style. This set of five vintage-looking ballpoint pens come in fun retro colors and write with black ink.

Find it: Amazon


If your teacher prefers pencils to pens, don’t worry—there are plenty of kitsch writing utensils to go around. These painted pencils look just like woodland creatures and are perfect for injecting whimsy into writing notes or completing a crossword puzzle.

Find it: Amazon

3. BEAKER MUG; $10-$15

Science teachers will get a kick out of this beaker-like mug. (Just make sure they don’t confuse it with the real thing!) The beaker mug comes in two sizes—350 ml and 900 ml—and is made with a strong glass handle that keeps hands safe from the heat.

Find it: ThinkGeek

4. NOVEL TEAS; $15

Big readers and English teachers will definitely get a kick out these novel tea bags. As the punny name suggests, each tea bag comes with a famous quote from classic literature. The English Breakfast tea will taste even better when enjoyed with the likes of Jane Austen.

Find it: Amazon


Maps aren't just important teaching tools—they also make for excellent home decor. But instead of focusing on history or geography, this map shows all of the national parks in the United States and includes a handy key that identifies each one. The owner can use included tree stickers to mark off which parks they've visited.

Find it: UncommonGoods


Teachers with lesson plan writer's block can use a quick game of trashcan basketball to get their creative juices flowing. That game is even more fun when the crumpled paper actually looks like a ball: On the back of each sheet of this specially-printed paper, there’s a pattern that resembles a ball when rolled up. There are 48 sheets in all and eight different ball patterns, including tennis, soccer, football, basketball, and baseball.

Find it: Amazon


You can’t go wrong with one of these amazing candles when you're shopping for librarians, English teachers, or general bibliophiles. Each scent is inspired by literature, whether it be a specific book (Game of Thrones) or a place (the Oxford library).

Find it: Amazon


Sure, your teacher might have run-of-the-mill black metal bookends in the classroom, but couldn’t they use something a little more exciting? Consider this LEGO-inspired option from ThinkGeek. The bookends have studs that work with real LEGO pieces, so the owner can build their own creations.

Find it: Amazon


Each of these glass coasters shows a different slice of the brain; when stacked in the right order (don’t worry; they’re labeled to help you), they look like a full brain. The set comes with 10 coasters and will look great on an office desk.

Find it: Amazon


Teachers have to haul around a lot of stuff, so give them a fun bag to use when they do it. This tote bag from Out of Print is perfect for teachers with students who still use the classic composition notebooks. If you’re not crazy about the tote, they also have notebook-inspired pouches.

Find it: Amazon

11. PI BOWL; $98

Math teachers will love this pi-inspired bowl. The bottom is solid, but the top rim gradually turns into the digits found in pi. It’s made from laser-cut stainless steel.

Find it: UncommonGoods

12. CHAIR SOCKS; $15

Noise-sensitive teachers sometimes put tennis balls on the bottom of chair legs to keep them from making loud, scraping noises. If the teacher you know is also aggravated by screeching chairs (or maybe just concerned about the floor scratching), give them these chair socks. The set comes with four adorable cat paws that can fit on the legs of most chairs and desks.

Find it: Firebox

13. CORK GLOBE; $55

Lots of teachers have regular globes in their room, but your favorite teacher could use something a little more creative. This special globe is made from cork and comes with its own special set of red markers that can be used to show where they have traveled or what country their students are currently learning about.

Find it: Amazon

14. POWER PEN; $36

This sleek looking device is a phone charger, pen, and stylus, all in one. It comes with a 700mAh battery and two twist-off tips for both lightning and microUSB ports. To charge the pen charger itself, use any power source with a USB port.

Find it: Firebox

15. SPACE SOCKS; $21

Get your teacher socks that are out of this world. The set of two comes with one planet-themed pair and one constellation-themed pair. They’re both knee-high and perfect for any field trips on a magic school bus.

Find it: Amazon