A few years ago, a group of parent volunteers at my school made a sweet Christmas gift for every single teacher. I found mine while cleaning out a box of stuff I'd packed when I left that position. I think it's an exceptionally clever idea and I we'll probably do something similar this year with the preschoolers. What I love about this kind of project is its flexibility: depending on how detailed you want to get, this one works for preschool right up through adult. It can also be adapted to fit any occasion: holidays, birthdays, thank you gifts, and so on.
Plastic picture frame - one for each child. You need the one-piece, L-shaped acrylic type, like this one. 3 1/2 x 5 and 4 x 6 are good sizes.
Cardstock or construction paper in the colors of your choice
Sticky notes (1 1/2" x 2" or 2" x 2" sizes work well - and the "Super Sticky" ones are great)
How to Do It
1. Cut a rectangle of cardstock or construction paper in the size of your frame. Most frames have an insert that you can simply trace.
2. Decorate your new insert as desired, leaving a space for the Post-Its. It's easiest to have the child place one sticky note right on the insert, and then tell them to decorate everywhere except on the note. This only really matters if you're putting words on, though. You have lots of options for decorating; see below for more ideas. The example above was stamped with a message and snowflake accents, and then punched with a decorative punch. A contrasting color of cardstock was placed behind the punched-out part.
3. Slide the insert into the picture frame just as you would with a photo, except upside down. Tip the frame over and turn it around so it slants upward away from you. This is how it will sit on the recipient's desk.
4. Stick a stack of Post-It notes onto the frame in the designated spot.
Variations & Tips
• More options for decorating the insert: tag art, photos, decoupage, watercolors, stickers, fingerprints, old greeting cards, or a printed-out poem to match the occasion.
• You could also embellish the frame itself. Try ribbons, small silk flowers, buttons, pebbles, google eyes, or beads.
• The holder doesn't have to sit the way I described. You could also have it upright like a regular frame, although it won't be as stable.
• Try this same project with magnetic acrylic frames - instant fridge sticky note holders!