It comes as no surprise that, in the year 2020, I’ve been having this discussion with friends. As you may well know, schools here have gone virtual for the week. Another casualty of the times is a show of generosity.
Growing up, our family always were gift givers to our teachers on the last days before Christmas Break. My mother always celebrated our holidays with non-stop cookie baking and my brother and I would bring a tin (yes, a tin) of home made goodies to our teacher just before the Christmas holidays. Of course, the teacher always said thanks – whether they were appreciative or not. But, let’s be true here – who can not appreciate a shortbread cookie or two?
Later, as a teacher, I was a recipient myself. There were some homemade cookie gifts but things had changed and I remember lottery tickets, coffee mugs, and boxes of hot chocolates. There were candy canes everywhere and I always would buy a bunch in bulk for all of my students.
Looking around this year, things are completely different. There will be no entire school Christmas assemblies and sharing of gifts. I was impressed, in a conversation with a friend who is working virtually this week, that the parents that were forward thinking enough had sent in gifts for teacher last week.
Things are even different outside of education. We normally go in and grab a couple of cards from the “Giving Tree” and make some purchases. However, this initiative isn’t running this year, in addition to a number of other things that we normally support. The Goodfellows were out last weekend though.
But, one thing is running and it’s so convenient. The local Sobeys store has pre-wrapped bags ready to be scanned and donated to the local social groups. In a discussion with some other teacher friends, they indicated that they’ve asked parents to make donations to community groups in their name if they find themselves in a position of wanting to give them a Christmas gift.
It’s a great gesture and another example of being good by doing good. Especially in these times, they’re finding new ways to make their part of the world a better place.