Teachers are incredible people, and we can celebrate them with Teacher Appreciation Week! It takes extraordinary people to dedicate their lives to educating the future generations. They are real-life heroes, and while they should be honored and appreciated all year long, one week is specifically dedicated to them in May.

When Is Teacher Appreciation Week?

Teacher Appreciation Week is celebrated the first full week of May each year. According to We Are Teachers, this week originated in 1984. In addition, there’s Teacher Appreciation Day, which is celebrated on the first Tuesday in May. World Teacher Day is another day to honor educators and it’s celebrated in October each year.

The honor and celebration of teachers became more prominent thanks to Eleanor Roosevelt. In the 1950s, she addressed the need to recognize educators with Congress. She wrote about how important teachers are as they prepare the future citizens and how she felt they didn’t get enough recognition.  She also wrote, “Next to parents, they are the most important people in our communities.”

Roosevelt truly saw how much teachers do and acknowledged that there was no monetary compensation that could repay them for their dedication to young minds. Her goal was for people to become more conscious of teachers and their importance in our communities.

Because of Roosevelt’s passion, Congress declared a National Teacher Day in 1953. Unfortunately, it would be years before the holiday truly caught on. In 1980, March 7th was deemed National Teacher Day by Congress, but that was only for the year. Five years later in 1985, it was the National PTA that established Teacher Appreciation Week in the first full week of May. They also deemed that Tuesday as Teacher Appreciation Day.

What Do Teachers Want?

It’s no secret that most teachers don’t make a lot of money. And often, they use their own money to provide items for their classrooms. There are many other things we’re sure teachers would love, including support, equipment that works, supplies to fully be able to do their jobs, and overall, to feel valued and respected. We might not personally be able to compensate our teachers monetarily, but there are still ways we can show our appreciation for all they do.

A few ideas from We Are Teachers on ways to show your appreciation:

  • Collect thank-you notes from students and parents.
  • Record thank-you videos.
  • Volunteer to help with various tasks: organizing, making copies, gathering supplies, etc.
  • Advocate for local business support with discounts or freebies.
  • Give gift cards! Generic cards can be great so the teachers can purchase any items they want or need. Food and coffee gift cards are often favorites for teachers too.

Businesses That Are Celebrating Teacher Appreciation Week:

We’ve gathered some deals and specials for teachers to enjoy during this week. Deals may vary by location. It’s always best to confirm ahead of time. If you know of any local businesses that are offering deals, discounts, or freebies for teachers, please send us an email!

  • Academy Sports + Outdoors

    Academy Sports + Outdoors offers bi-annual discounts for teachers and school staff. From now until May 11, 2024, teachers and school staff can enjoy 10% off their purchases with a school ID. This discount is available in-store and online.

    Academy Sports + Outdoors has two local stores: 4210 Washington Road, Evans, GA and 321 Fabian Drive, Aiken, SC.

  • Adidas

    Adidas has exclusive discounts for teachers. You can get 30% off online and in-store, and 15% off at factory outlets. This deal does require that you verify your educator status. The closest store locations to the Augusta area are in Atlanta, with Outlet Stores in Lawrenceville and Woodstock.

    Get more details HERE.

  • McAlister's Deli

    Between May 6th and May 12th, educators can get a free tea. This is valid for one (1) Big Sweet Tea, Unsweet Tea, ½ Sweet & ½ Unsweet Tea, or ½ Lemonade & ½ Sweet/Unsweet Tea (flavor shots excluded). This is available at participating locations. You must show a valid ID at checkout. Get more details HERE.

    McAlister’s Deli in Augusta is located at 3602 Exchange Lane.

  • SONIC Drive In

    Educators who are part of the free SONIC Teachers’ Circle rewards program can enjoy a bundle of rewards for Teacher Appreciation Week. On May 6th, Teachers’ Circle members will have 5 separate rewards added to their account as a “Thank You!” Rewards can be redeemed between May 6th and May 20th with any qualifying purchase.

    Rewards include:

    • Buy One SONIC Blast®, Get One Free
    • Buy One Entree, Get One Free
    • Free SONIC® Cheeseburger with any Purchase
    • Free Large Drink or Slush with any Purchase
    • Free Small Side with Entrée Purchase

    The rewards program is available through the SONIC App. Get additional details HERE. And find your closest SONIC Drive In HERE.

  • Applebee's

    Teachers will be honored with a free dessert with any purchase when they dine-in at Applebee’s during Teacher Appreciation Week. They must have a valid ID. Educators will also get a voucher for a BOGO free entree for future use (between May 13th-June 9th, 2024).

    Applebee’s Locations:

    3117 Washington Road, Augusta, GA

    2125 Windsor Spring Road, Augusta, GA

    1360 Whiskey Road, Aiken, SC

  • Staples

    Teachers can get a FREE Teacher Supply Kit and 20% off purchases between May 5th and 11th, with valid ID. There’s a limit of 20 kits per store, so they may run out quickly.

    Staples Locations:

    246 Robert C. Daniel Jr. Parkway, Augusta, GA

    933 Pine Log Road, Aiken, SC

  • Fleet Feet Augusta

    Fleet Feet Augusta is celebrating teachers and nurses from May 6th through the 12th. They are giving teachers and nurses 20% off any in store purchase.

    Address: 229 Furys Ferry Road, Augusta, GA

  • Logan's Roadhouse

    Logan’s Roadhouse is honoring teachers and nurses during National Teacher and Nurses Appreciation Week. Nurses and teachers can enjoy 20% off their entree by simply showing their badge or ID.

    Address: 269 Robert C. Daniel Junior Parkway, Augusta.

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