gift giving etiquette for instructors

rachel

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what is proper as far as giving your instructor a xmas gift? Just give something from your child(who takes lessons too) or from both of you? any thoughts? ideas? thanks in advance!
 

Seig

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Originally posted by rachel
what is proper as far as giving your instructor a xmas gift? Just give something from your child(who takes lessons too) or from both of you? any thoughts? ideas? thanks in advance!
Make it heart felt and inexpensive. You do not want to make them feel bad by spending a fortune if they have given no gift to you outside of your training.
 

Michael Billings

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1. Another Parker II knife;
2. A black corvette;
3. One of Mike Pick's fighting knives;
4. A winning lottery ticket.

No seriously, I think it is more appropriate for the class to give an instructor a present. That way he/she does not feel obligated to give each sender a gift in return. (Not that he/she should, reference Giri for the student - and shibumi for the teacher.) It is already a reciprocal relationship to me, I learn by teaching, or at least try to.

Try not to create more of a sense of obligation that you have to. I got a Parker I knife a coupe or five years ago from my whole class. This meant more to me than I can describe ... and it was not expected. By everyone pitching in and pooling their resources, you can purchase or make, a much nicer present than the individual student can afford. (reference gift #2 on my list above.

I do not encourage giving the instructor a gift - a lot of traditional or ravenous individuals may want all the stuff they can get from their students, but to me, it creates a sense of Giri, or duty back to the student that I may not be willing to give. Of course chocolate and cookies are always accepted.

Oss,
-Michael
 

KenpoTess

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Originally posted by rachel
what is proper as far as giving your instructor a xmas gift? Just give something from your child(who takes lessons too) or from both of you? any thoughts? ideas? thanks in advance!

I was tickled with just the cards we received.. with heartfelt note inside from our students :)

I always feel a bit embarrassed when a student gives a gift and I have nothing to reciprocate with.. so maybe just a card (especially the first Christmas) would be appropo *S*
course cookies are good..*w*


Tess
 
O

Old Warrior

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"I always feel a bit embarrassed when a student gives a gift and I have nothing to reciprocate with. so maybe just a card (especially the first Christmas) would be appropo *S*"

Why? You've done your best to teach a student a difficult art. If the student wishes to acknowledge your sincere effort - learn to accept the thought and just say "Thank You". I wrote a nice humble, self depricating note that I enclosed with the gift I gave to my Kumdo teacher. My only hope is that the Master will have someone translate it into Korean.
 
K

Kirk

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A friend of mine who studies kendo in Houston said that the dojo
collectively gets the owner of the dojo a gift on christmas and his
birthday. Most of the time, it's been something for the school, like
mats, mirrors, equipment, etc. It's a pretty big school, and this
year, they all bought him a $5,000 kyoto(sp?) sword, to replace
one he sold back in the early 80's when the dojo was still
struggling.

I was touched enough to ask the guys in my school if they wanted
to chip in for a gift, and I got pure silence in the locker room. To
each his own. Next year, I'm going to buy that 3 foot diameter
Universal Pattern that Ron Whipple sells. If anyone wants to chip
in before I give it to him, fine, their name will go on the "From:"
tag with mine. If not, I'm still doing it.
 

arnisador

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A group gift is a good idea. Another common approach is to get something for the school rather than the instructor. Is there something it clearly needs? At one school I studied at the instructor's clock lost time so rapidly that he never knew when to start class. Several students got him a clock. It was really appreciated and practical. It can be that simple.
 

KenpoTess

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Originally posted by Kirk
A friend of mine who studies kendo in Houston said that the dojo
collectively gets the owner of the dojo a gift on christmas and his
birthday. Most of the time, it's been something for the school, like
mats, mirrors, equipment, etc. It's a pretty big school, and this
year, they all bought him a $5,000 kyoto(sp?) sword, to replace
one he sold back in the early 80's when the dojo was still
struggling.

I was touched enough to ask the guys in my school if they wanted
to chip in for a gift, and I got pure silence in the locker room. To
each his own. Next year, I'm going to buy that 3 foot diameter
Universal Pattern that Ron Whipple sells. If anyone wants to chip
in before I give it to him, fine, their name will go on the "From:"
tag with mine. If not, I'm still doing it.

we Tried that last year.. the group gift for Seig.. no problem getting the money together.. but it was a hassle trying to wait for it to arrive and finally did Months later from an online site.. this year we are just having a small potluck at the school (tonight actually) It is a nice gesture for the Head Instructor :)
Good to see you Kirk.. Happy Holidays~!

Tess
 

jfarnsworth

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I think a gift certificate for the instructor and significant other is quite nice. Given by the entire class this way it can be a better cert. for a nicer resteraunt.
 

jfarnsworth

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We went to our local chinese buffet today as well. I love frog legs and put a pretty good dent in the pan/ :)
 

jfarnsworth

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It must be tough to be them. Heather didn't want to even touch them. I ate about 20 - 25 of the little guys.
 

Michael Billings

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Home baked pastries were big this year, and much appreciated. Thanks MIN and HAPPY BIRTHDAY on the 25th.

Home brewed beer, a whole case ... some english style ale (similar to Newcastle) and an american style ale (Samual Adams maybe?) Some still needs to sit a while due to "yeast" issues. Whatever, all I know is I appreciated the thought and plan on appreciating the product.

We, as a school, went out after advanced class Thursday for a meal and a brew. It started the Christmas season off well.

Thanks All & Merry Christmas,
-Michael
 

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