How many of you saw this amazing graduation gift from a dad to his daughter last year for her high school graduation? I saw the story on Facebook, and the idea has been spinning around in my head ever since. Basically, he started 13 years ago when his daughter was in kindergarten and every year he had her teachers, coaches, and other influential adults in her life sign a page in a special book, (he chose Oh the Places You’ll Go! by Dr. Seuss.) In the end, he had a wonderful compilation of memories for his daughter to look back on. Best. Surprise. Ever! I knew I wanted to do the same thing for my kids, so I’m starting it this year. To explain the idea to their teachers in a simple way, I wrote a poem to include with the book.
I created 2 versions of this printable (boy) and (girl), and I left some space at the bottom of the page for you to write a personal message to the teacher. I will include a few more specific instructions like, “please keep this a surprise!” and details for coordinating when I will pick up the book after they have signed.
I hope you guys will use this idea for your kids, and tell all your friends & family about it because it’s not too late to start! Even if your kids are in middle school or high school, they would love to have a few years worth of messages from their teachers.
My kids are all still fairly young, so I am getting a good start! I asked the boys’ teachers from last year who were still at the school to sign as well. Look how cute my son’s 1st grade teacher signed her page:
I’ll tell you about the books I chose for my kids. You could really use any children’s book, or a book that is meaningful to them, but make sure the pages have good spaces to sign. (You can get these books for awesome prices on Amazon, and I’ve included affiliate links for each book.)
I really liked the idea of using Oh! The Places You’ll Go! by Dr. Seuss for one of my kids because I love that book anyway, and it’s perfect for graduation. I am using that one for my oldest son.
For my next son, I found the cutest book and I just LOVE it! It’s called I Wish You More, by Amy Krouse Rosenthal and Tom Lichtenheld.
The messages are so sweet and simple on each page, and there is plenty of space for writing without going over the darling illustrations.
For my daughter, I found this book at Target called Florabelle by Sasha Quinton, about a little girl with a huge imagination and big dreams. It reminded me of my daughter so I grabbed it for her (it kind of looks like her too!)
She is finishing preschool this year, but she’s had the same teachers for three years, so their messages are very meaningful to me!
In order to try to keep these books a surprise for my kids, I deliver them to the teachers in a large manila envelope with only the teacher’s name on the outside. Inside, I include a copy of my poem and an ultra fine point black Sharpie for them to sign with. (I didn’t do this for my oldest son’s book and the teachers signed with whatever pen they could find so it doesn’t look as nice.) Another tip I have is to designate where you want the teacher to sign by writing “Kindergarten” or “1st grade” on the page you want that teacher to sign, and continue in order in the book so it is chronological.
I would love to hear from you if you decide to do this for your kids and use my poem! Here are the download links for the poems again:
I really believe these are priceless gifts and I can’t wait to give them to my children on their high school graduation days. If you have any other book suggestions, please leave them in the comments for our readers. I hope you are all enjoying the end of the school year!