Gifts for music teachers?

December 23, 2005 at 01:37 AM · Well, it's a little late to be thinking about it for this year, but as I'm already making resolutions (to be broken, I'm sure) to get my holiday shopping earlier next year, I was wondering about good gifts for music teachers. Do you get sick of violin-themed knick-knacks? Do you prefer something personal from your student? Would you prefer not to get anything at all?

For my young daughter's violin teacher, with whom she's been studying less than a month, I gave a set of cards with beautiful black and white violin photographs on them.

For my own violin teacher, with whom I have a wonderful relationship and love dearly, even though I've only been working with her for seven months, I'm giving a small framed photograph of the two of us standing together with our violins and a handwritten card attempting to explain how grateful I am to have her as my teacher.

What are the rest of you giving or getting?

Replies (18)

December 23, 2005 at 04:11 AM · My favorite gift was actually a framed picture taken of the student and I together. I was really touched by that.

A teacher will love any gift that you give them. I personally prefer not to get so many yummy edible items not because I don't love them, but because it ruins my diet! ;)If they have a Christmas tree, an ornament is very nice. And of course, gift cards are always appreciated!

December 23, 2005 at 04:19 AM · Good to know! I went with a gift card for lack of a better idea.

December 23, 2005 at 06:03 AM · You can always go to the local bakery and get them to make you a cake shaped as a violin :) I love stuff like that! Also a good bottle of wine could be nice :)

December 23, 2005 at 07:26 AM · The more, the merrier.

December 23, 2005 at 08:27 AM · "Do you get sick of violin-themed knick-knacks? "

YES! As I posted earlier in a similar thread, a promise to practice at least 1 hour a day during the holiday is enough of a gift for me. That way I won't have to go back to square one...As the saying goes:

"Why don't first violinists ever have more than 5 bars of consecutive rests?.....So you don't have to retrain them"


December 23, 2005 at 08:52 AM · Karin, both of the gifts you got will be appreciated, I'm sure. The one you got for your own teacher, along with the card in which you described your feelings for her, sounds especially good. Personally, I'd be very happy to get just the card.

Here is a link to my favorite Christmas present from a student this year.

December 23, 2005 at 03:47 PM · Hi,

Any gift is nice. Can never go wrong with wine or chocolates :=) I like any gift from students if it is genuine. What I don't like is students that don't buy anything in spite of getting even extra free time in an already tuition-free institution like the one where I teach. Just bad manners - too many kids with those these days.

But in essence, anything goes; it should reflect you, the student.


December 23, 2005 at 01:58 PM · I like all the bath salts and lotions and stuff.

This is my first Christmas with students, so I hope I get some! hehe. My mom has tons of students so that's why she gets the bath stuff, which I use.

December 23, 2005 at 06:57 PM · Pauline, that is SO cute! How old was the student who made that for you?

December 23, 2005 at 11:45 PM · Karin, she is a fourth grader, and she is an absolute doll. I'm going to write about her in my blog.

If you're considering giving wine as a present, remember that a substantial minority of people don't drink alcohol.

I'd like some advice. The mother of one of my students (the one who made the card for me) bought me a very lovely bracelet (and expensive, by my standards) as a Christmas gift. I suppose she's noticed that I like jewelry. I don't wear bracelets because my wrists are very thin and bracelets always fall off and get lost. When I lost one with two safety clasps, I decided not to wear bracelets again. I'd like to tell the woman who bought me the gift about this and ask her whether she can exchange it or give me gift certificate to Barnes & Noble, as she did last year. The gift certificate would probably be the best solution for both her and me. I know she's been running herself ragged with the demands of her job in addition to the holiday season. I don't want to hurt her feelings. I'll tell her that my favorite gift is the card her daughter made for me. Any suggestions?

December 23, 2005 at 11:58 PM · Enjoy the bracelet while you have it. That's what I do.

December 24, 2005 at 12:21 AM · Hi Pauline,

I wouldn't say anything to her, just appreciate the fact that they think you're important enough to get a present for.

You said "I know she's been running herself ragged with the demands of her job in addition to the holiday season. I don't want to hurt her feelings"....I think that telling her that you'd rather have a barnes and noble certificate would hurt her feelings. I would only say something like that to a family member if they got me something I really couldn't use. Does that help?

Also, it couldn't hurt to mention "Barnes & Noble" every so often around Christmas, how much you love it, could spend a million dollars there...

December 24, 2005 at 01:32 AM · I usually give Macy's gift cards to my teachers and so far I think they like it because they can buy anything they want. I don't drink alcohol, but if someone gives me a bottle of wine I just use it for cooking, so not to hurt their feelings.

December 24, 2005 at 02:42 AM · My favorite gifts have always been movie passes, which are like tickets to a total break from it all whenever you choose to use them. Ahhh! Gotta love that!

December 24, 2005 at 02:51 AM · My ex and I were both music teachers... he was a band director for many years. Both of us received interesting and lovely gifts... but what has lasted the longest is Christmas ornaments. I have a whole little tree filled with music related ornaments. If they didn't come with the name of the student on it... I tried to add it. It's nice to remember the students and hope that their lives are still touched by music in one way or another. :)


December 24, 2005 at 03:45 AM · As much as I like chocolate and everything else, the things I enjoy getting most from my students are the hugs and handmade cards they give me. They've put themself into making those things with me in mind and that means more than any amount of money they spend on a gift card or box of chocolates.

December 24, 2005 at 04:43 AM · Good ideas Kelsey. I'll keep that in mind, but I don't think I can hug my teacher. Important thing is to let them know you appreciate them in a personal way.

December 24, 2005 at 06:02 PM · How about some small violins?

It is Christmas Eve and as I recover from a semester of teaching and the last over scheduled weekend of Christmas Events I have only one really big wish in mind that will not leave me. How will I find small enough Violins for children who can't afford them. What I really want under my tree is enough 1/32 & 1/16 size violins to start a PreTwinkle Program with children at risk near our community so I can donate 1/7th of my week teaching?

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