How Do I Thank the Teachers Who Wrote My Recommendations?

I have been fortunate enough to be accepted to several colleges. Is it customary for students to thank their teachers who wrote them their recommendations? If so, how should I return their favors of writing my rec letters? Is it normally a card, letter, a small gift? What would be sufficient to let them know that I really appreciated their help? Or is all of this not necessary, and thanking them in person is enough?

It's not "customary" for students to formally thank the teachers who wrote their recommendations, but it should be. This is a time-consuming task that is rarely an official part of a faculty duty-roster. Occasionally students do write notes or even give gifts to their recommenders, but an astounding majority barely offer more than a mumbled, "Thanks"--if that.

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