School Kris Kringle

Pile of Kris Kringle gifts at schoolI’ve noticed in the last few years that schools are encouraging (if that’s the right word) Kris Kringles for gifts between the kids.

Not sure if this is good or bad really. Certainly easier if kids just give each cards but a few would always want to give a gift to special friends. Then there is the risk of hurting people if one gets a gift and another doesn’t so it can be hard to stop. I see both sides of that.

One child did one at school last week and the gift had a $10 to $20 limit – that’s a lot of money for kids I think, especially if it’s not for someone you know well so it could end up being $20 of nonsense or unwanted things. I also found it a big range – some kids will spend $9.99 and get a $21 gift, and so on, which is a bit unfair but could lead to disagreements and hassles in the playground.

Tonight, another child says she will be doing a KK too. A week of school left and they’re told it’s happening with details to be discussed tomorrow! So guess who’ll have to go shopping over this weekend – someone who had thought Xmas shopping finished because I don’t want to go within cooee of a shopping centre at this time of year!

SO am I the only one not enthused about school Kris Kringles this year?


* Image courtesy of 123rf

16 Responses to School Kris Kringle

  • mommy2senj says:

    In theory the Kris Kringle gift exchanges are a nice and fun idea. But it can create challenges. Not everyone can afford for their child to buy one of the gifts for example. What is a child to do then? And as mentioned, if someone is left out in some way, then he or she will feel bad. And that is the last thing anyone wants to see especially at Christmas time.

    • Santa's Elf says:

      I think a low budget Kris Kringle is better for kids – apart from what people can afford or expect, most kids have so much stuff that we don’t need to encourage more materialism in them. maybe a Kris Kringle based on home made items or a positive message would be nice?

  • angeldrb says:

    In my previous school, everyone is required to participate in Kris Kringles. Even the high school students! Nothing too expensive, though. We were encouraged to make personalized gifts, but the downside is when you get a person who’s not that close to you. Nonetheless, it was one of the fun things during our annual Christmas party so I really miss it.

    • Santa's Elf says:

      Glad you enjoyed that tradition, angeldrb – it can be a lot of fun if kept under control.

      Sometimes it is easier to buy for a less close friend – there is less pressure and you aren’t hindered by thinking “hmm, I know he has that” and “Oh, he gave me that last year” and similar ๐Ÿ™‚

  • angeldrb says:

    Yes, it can actually be viewed that way. I’m more thinking along the lines of “I’m not sure what his interests are. What if he doesn’t like my gift?” ๐Ÿ™‚

    • Santa's Elf says:

      “What if he doesn’t like my gift?” I think shows that you care and want to give a gift someone will enjoy rather than just the first thing you can grab – this is a good thing ๐Ÿ™‚

      Sometimes the best gifts can come from the littlest things – what little detail do you know about the person? Maybe you remember a passing comment, have seen a sticker on his folder at school, noticed he likes wearing stripy socks or saw him break a pen in class yesterday – good presents don’t have to be about the big things!

  • angeldrb says:

    Yes, paying attention to the small details can of great help. If I’m on the receiving end of that gift, I think I would be really touched that someone who’s not in my circle of friends know something about me. That gift can even start friendships! Not to mention that my close friends seem to overlook the small details about me because they’re looking at me wholly. But, acquaintances and people I don’t know well notice those little quirks in me because they see me in a totally different perspective than my friends do.

  • Waynefire says:

    I wish the schools where I lived did this type of action. I know it would be a good thing, but here in the states they tend to discourage this type of gift giving.

    • Santa's Elf says:

      WHy do you think it is discouraged, Waynefire? It may have its flaws but it is so much easier than trying to get a gift for everyone – or feeling guilty for missing someone.

  • Youlovejordan says:

    I remember in elementary school we had something similar to this except it was called “Secret Santa”. Overall, I think it’s a pretty good concept for kids to learn how to give and not just be on the receiving end but it can bring issues depending on the parent’s financial health. Some people cannot afford extra bills especially around the holiday season. I think the schools should keep the gifts under five bucks, there’s some pretty cool toys at Walmart and the Dollar stores you just have to look! I love the concept of it though.

    • Santa's Elf says:

      Yes, I know some people call it Secret Santa, too.

      With a resonable budget (and I agree that $5 is reasonable for most people to manage) it is a great activity – so much easier than worrying about who to gift, etc.

  • ChristiQ says:

    I live in the US, and my kids used to exchange gifts as school. Boys would bring a present for a boy, and girls would bring a present for a girl. If you brought a present, you got a present. Most teachers would buy extra presents for kids whose parents couldn’t afford it. For the last two or three years, the school has stopped all Christmas gift exchanges because of the bad economy. There were too many parents who couldn’t afford it. My youngest son’s kindergarten teacher did a neat gift exchange. Each child brought a book that they liked to exchange. This was really affordable because you can get books for just a couple of dollars, and it promotes reading. But, they are not allowed to do that anymore either.

    • Santa's Elf says:

      I think it’s really sad that people stop something like Kris Kringle at school, ChrisiQ. It shouldn’t be about money, and if things are that tough, those kids may not get another gift at all which is even sadder. I understand schools don’t want pressure on parents nor to have some kids stand out because there is no money at home, but it’s just sad.

      Instead of stopping Kris Kringle, get more creative – limit gifts to under $5, get the kids to make gifts (maybe have a range of activities they can make in class even? Or give out lists of suitable ideas) or the kids could give a voucher (eg carry your school books between rooms for a week, tidy your desk/locker for a month, braid your hair once a week). Even if the kids made cards during art then wrote personal letters inside to make each other feel good as a real Christmas gift.

  • Melanie says:

    Well, for my plans, I am entered in about 3 Secret Santas!!!!!!!

    Money is a little low obviously because of the economy, but I love giving gifts because it makes people happy!!! Christmas is my absolute favorite holiday and I am so glad itโ€™s almost here !!

    I am in college, so I will be visiting my family sooooon!! I have to travel to two different places in the to visit my siblings, nieces, and nephew & back to the bay area to visit my parents!! Iโ€™m so so so so excited to see my family because I havenโ€™t seen them in soooo long because of school. BRING ON THE HOLIDAY SPIRIT & CHRISTMAS CHEER!! Woooo

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