Honor A Retiring Teacher With These 21 Retirement Poems

Do you know an educator who will soon hang up their sharpies and put away their red pens after a long career?

If you want to make their retirement special, consider incorporating poems into their farewell celebrations.

Don’t know of any?

To help out, we’ve pulled together a list of 21 options that fit the bill. 

How Do You Say Goodbye to a Retiring Teacher? 

Saying goodbye to a retiring teacher can be an emotional experience — especially if they taught somewhere for a long time and were beloved by the community.

What are some ways you can send off one of your favorite teachers in style and with reverence:

  • Throw a Party: It can be a party for one person or a group of teachers.
  • Do a Roast: If the teacher in question has thick skin and can laugh at themself, a roast may be in order.
  • Put on a Farewell Variety Show: Get students and administrators involved! Many schools do a final performance for retiring educators, which often proves to be a big hit. (Events like this can also be effective fundraisers.)
  • Buy a Special Gift: Ask people to donate toward a special goodbye gift.

When preparing to wish a retiring teacher well, be mindful of where they are physically and emotionally.

Some people look forward to retirement, and others see it as an unwelcome end.

Plan accordingly.

Honor A Retiring Teacher With These 21 Retirement Poems

Retiring teachers’ poems can be fun or serious, silly or heartfelt. We’ve curated a list of 21 choices.

Pick whichever ones work best for your beloved educator.

1. We Are Your Garden by Kelly Roper

As our teacher,
You planted the seeds of learning in us.
You nurtured us with the water of knowledge
And fed us with your creativity and enthusiasm.
You pruned us when we got off track
And shined the sunlight of your approval on us.
And now it’s time to reap the harvest
You’ve tended so carefully over your career.
You’ve earned your retirement.
We are your garden. Sit back now and watch us grow.

2. You Didn’t Teach Us from Books from TotalTashan.com

You didn’t teach us from books
You taught us from your soul
In our lives you have played
A very important role
You didn’t just teach us from
What was there in our syllabus
You taught all those things
Which were important for us
Thanks so much for being
More than just a teacher
You have coached our lives
By being our mentor
Happy retirement

3.  Without You I Wouldn’t Know from Fond-Farewell.com

Dear Miss / Mister,
Without you I wouldn’t know,
That ice forms below zero.
You gave us your best years,
We gave you just half an ear.
We wish you all the best,
Thank you for that last pop test.
Rest assured we won’t forget,
Our one plus one: we’re in your debt.
Thank you for all you’ve done,
Now its your turn, to have some fun!

4. You’ve Been Our Inspiration By Kelly Roper

Teachers are a dedicated lot.
They do more than required,
And work until over-tired.
But once in every generation,
Comes a teacher whose dedication
Is the source of inspiration
And deserving of more acclamation.
That’s what you’ve been to us,
So please endure while we make a fuss.
We couldn’t let you leave
Without making sure you perceive
The respect you have achieved
And how you’ve helped us all believe
So sincerely in what we do.
With utmost gratitude,
Your Fellow Teachers

5. A Heartfelt Thank You By Kelly Roper

To our amazing (teacher’s name),
Happy retirement
And best wishes.
Never think for a moment you’ll be forgotten.
Kids and staff will remember their time with you in the years to come.
You have our respect,
Our admiration, and our
Undying gratitude.

6. Happy Retirement To A Great Teacher  by C. A. Lynch

Teachers influence many children
And you have, that is a given.
Caring, over the years you have shown
For kindness, you are known.
The knowledge that you shared
Shows us how much you cared
Teaching was not just a job for you
It was a love, we can see by what you do.
The school won’t be the same
With you, we surpassed and overcame
Challenges we all did face
But, you made the school a better place.
So when you have retired we will recall
Your smile as we walk down the hall.
We will miss you so
We really hate to see you go.
But as you retire we wish you well
As a teacher, we think you are swell
We say so long, but not farewell
We hope retirement treats you well.

math teacher having a lesson retirement poems for teachers

7. How Happy You Must Be from (needs website name or author’s name)

How happy you must be
To retire with a feeling of pride
With the good wishes of so many
Students and colleagues by your side
How satisfied you must be
To leave this building
After receiving so many thanks
And many warm feelings
How lucky you must feel
To leave behind your legacy
That will be cherished
By generations yet to be

8. We Thank You  by C. A. Lynch

We thank you for the teaching you did
We thank you for loving us kids.
We thank you for the patience you have shown
We thank you for putting up with our groans.
Now as you retire we wish you
Happiness in all you do
Relaxation for all your days
We will miss you always.
You are a teacher we will not forget
You leave a legacy of positive mindsets
Happy Retirement to a teacher who
Helped us kids to continue to grow

9. A Teacher by Samatha C. Ringle

Of all the professions you could have been
A teacher you were, you picked up your pen
You showed us many learning tricks
As a teacher, you we pick.
But now you are retiring
A new door for you is opening
We wish nothing but happiness for you
Happy Retirement you are due!

10. We Can’t Believe It from JollyGreets.com

We can’t believe it so,
You really have to go
After all this time, all these years,
You’ll truly be missed by all your peers.
We hope you have fun, on your (very) extended vacation,
We know there’s nothing that you can’t get done.
We’ll miss you!

11. No More by Tom S. Gold

No more books
No more kids
No more dirty looks
No more messy lids.
No more tests to mark
No more recess breaks
No more loud remarks
No more putting on the brakes.
You now get to retire
Look forward to the future
No more routines
And no more daily structure
Congrats to you
You will be missed you know
A great teacher you have been
Losing you for us is a great blow.
I wonder why more time
With you I haven’t spent
There are a million things
That I want to say today
Dear teacher, you have changed
My life in many ways

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12. No Longer Teach? By C. A. Lynch

Retirement doesn’t mean you will no longer teach
But you may find the setting may be a different place
You may end up teaching on a beach
Imagine teaching in a different space.
There are still those around you that need
Knowledge that you can impart
Helping others, you will succeed
We know you have a big heart.
So retire from the classroom
But never from teaching
Continue to see people bloom
Imagine the people you will be reaching!

13. Countless Little Hands from JollyGreets.com

Countless little hands working away
Countless little feet running to play
The minds that you’ve molded
Are invaluable to the world
You have made a difference in so many lives of little boys and little girls
Your kindness and warmth
Your wit and your uncanny sense of people’s abilities
Have truly changed the course for so many young people who have come into your classroom
Your teaching is one of a kind and will dearly missed here.
Enjoy this well deserved time for you and yours! Thank you for everything 

14. Once a Teacher, Always a Teacher by Paul Berchtold

Today we pause, when we reflect,
Our hearts tell us, that we’re correct,
You always are a teacher.
Teachers really aren’t retired,
That’s just how the brain is wired,
You always are a teacher.
You have so much to share and give,
It’s just the way you really live,
You always are a teacher.
If first teaching made you queasy,
Years of practice made it easy,
You always are a teacher.
You may not need a word to say,
Your light keeps shining bright as day,
You always are a teacher.
The time has come, your homework’s done,
We wish you ever so much fun,
You always are a teacher.
We will miss you in the classroom,
New fields await to see you bloom,
You always are a teacher.
May you shine on, in words and deeds,
The wisdom that this world needs,
You always are a teacher.
As we show appreciation,
May you have this satisfaction,
You always are a teacher.

15.  You Live On! by Paul Berchtold

You live on in days retired,
In the pupils that you inspired,
You lit the flame they carry high,
Now see it over the world fly.
You live on in parent’s hearts,
Together well you did your parts,
To see with growing satisfaction,
Training up this generation.
You live on in student’s lives,
Who have become husbands, wives,
Some are parents with children dear,
You have a part, deserve our cheer.
You live on for generations,
What you teach is building nations.
The seed you’ve been busy sowing,
Will day by day keep on growing.
You live on in memory deep.
Your legacy is what we’ll keep.
If every church needs a preacher,
Every person needs a teacher.
You live on in our grateful mind,
How hard it is the right words find.
To thank you for your work done well,
Where it will end, can scarcely tell.
You live on in grateful spirit,
May you rejoice when you hear it,
You’re an angel, a shining star,
May your light shine near and far.

16. I’ll Remember You Always by Joanna Fuchs

Rarely does someone
get to influence a person’s life
in a positive way
for a lifetime,
as a teacher can,
fostering optimism and confidence,
providing knowledge that leads to success,
and being a good role model,
as you have,
and you are,
and you will…
I’ll remember you always.
Thank you.

cupcakes for retirement party retirement poems for teachers

17. As You Retire by Joanna Fuchs

As you retire,
know that we will miss you.
Every day, we will feel a gap,
an empty space in our lives
that used to be filled
with the pleasure of seeing you.
As you retire,
look back on your major accomplishment:
the lives you touched, influenced,
and improved forever.
As you retire,
know how important you are to everyone,
a gem, a unique treasure
that we could never replace.
As you retire,
be fulfilled, be happy, be at peace;
you deserve it.

18. You Have Arrived at the End of An Album from RetirementValley.com

You have arrived at the end of an album
Whose each page is filled with kids.
These riches of images constitute a book
That you have earned to read,
These common memories that make us happy,
We built them thanks to you each year,
And if they have led us to this day,
It’s to tell you how much we are your friends.
We will never forget our schoolmaster.
Your lessons of English on a background of cabriole,
Will be part of us when they become mature,
We will talk about living to our beloved children,
Showing them that under all the culture,
To begin this book, there was your acquire.

19. You Reign in Your Class from RetirementValley.com

You reign in your class,
With gentleness and grace
Your patience is endless
You know how to tell us
The present, the past,
And make it alive
Your voice has guided us
Throughout the year
We come out grown up.
For everything you taught us
– I know it’s priceless –
I want to say to you: “Thank you”!

20. Soul Beautiful from (needs website name or author’s name)

Soul beautiful and very kind,
Talent is strong and you are generous with heart.
All your ideas, dreams of beauty,
Lessons, ideas will not be in vain!
You managed to find the way to the children,
Let the successes await you along the way!

21. I Am Proud from ListBark.com

I am proud to have
Inherited you legacy
Of having good
Ethics and integrity
My dear teacher
I am proud to tell you
That you will always be
My guide and my guru
Happy retirement

How To Use These Teacher Retirement Poems

How can you use teacher retirement poems? We’ve got a few ideas.

  • In Speeches: Kickstart a retirement roast or speech with a fun poem that fits the occasion.
  • Calligraphy and Framed: Hire a calligraphy artist to make a “poster” of the poem and then get it framed nicely. It’s an excellent gift for a retiree with a home office needing wall art.
  • Include in a Card: Write out a fun poem in a card. Though it won’t cost you a cent, the extra effort is thoughtful.
  • Custom Merch: If the poem is short enough, get t-shirts made. Or, just use a portion of the poem. Custom mugs are also a fun idea.
  • As Decoration: Having several poem posters made for retirement parties can be a lot of fun. You can get them printed and framed relatively cheaply. They make for great conversation pieces and spark engaging, lighthearted conversations — which is precisely what you’re aiming for at a joyous celebration. 

Teachers are special people who are often underappreciated. Show your gratitude for their years of hard work — (and often little pay) — by putting a lot of thought and care into their retirement celebrations.

Make it their time to shine! They deserve it.

Teachers are like our second parents. And when they retire, we want to make it meaningful. Here are retirement poems for teachers we can use for that.

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