Celebrating graduation day in preschool

by Deborah J. Stewart, M.Ed. on May 6, 2013

in Back to School, Graduation Day, Preschool Graduation Day, Special Occasions

We are soon coming to the end of our current school year and in honor of the time we have spent together and what the future holds, we celebrate with a fun, simple, but very memorable preschool graduation…

Celebrating Graduation Day by Teach Preschool

There are many different thoughts about whether or not it is “appropriate” for preschoolers to participate in a graduation program or ceremony. I can’t answer that for you because I think it all depends on the approach you take and if your approach will be a meaningful and enriching experience for your students and their parents. While you consider what you believe is in the best interest of your students and parents, I thought I would share what our graduation day was like last year and talk a little bit about why we celebrate this day together…

Celebrating Graduation Day by Teach Preschool

Why we celebrate

I have a small preschool and all of my students are with me from the day they enter the program until the day they leave my program.  During their time with me, my students grow and learn so much that it is simply amazing. I don’t want the last day of their time with me to just come and go as if it wasn’t significant. I want my students and their parents to know that their time in preschool was precious and that I valued every second of it. I want to offer my students and parents the chance to celebrate the closing of their preschool years and the beginning of new experiences to come. Our graduates are moving on to new discoveries and new accomplishments but they take with them the many discoveries and accomplishments we shared together and this is all worth celebrating…

Celebrating Graduation Day by Teach Preschool

How we celebrate

In my preschool, all the students are involved in the graduation celebration. They all march down the red carpet together with the younger (future-graduates) leading the way.  Last year, all the children marched down the isle to the lively tune of “I’m Bringing Home My Baby Bumble Bee.”  This got our program off to a fun, relaxed, and very preschool focused start…

Celebrating Graduation Day by Teach Preschool

Before graduation day, we went outside a couple of times and practiced our walk down the isle so the children would know what to do on graduation day but my assistant and I were there to remind them as needed on the day of graduation…

Celebrating Graduation Day by Teach Preschool

We also spent a couple of days practicing our songs that we planned to sing for the parents.  The songs we sing each year are usually all songs we have been singing throughout the school year so the children are already familiar with them and comfortable singing them together…

Lauging together on the stage

On the day of graduation, all the children sing a couple of songs together first and then our graduates sing a song on their own plus demonstrate a few things they have learned throughout the school year…

Celebrating Graduation Day by Teach Preschool

And then I call up each child to the stage. Each of our future graduates get a certificate for completing a year in preschool…

Celebrating Graduation Day by Teach Preschool

And each of our graduates get their diploma for completing their preschool experience…

Celebrating Graduation Day by Teach Preschool

While each student is up on the stage, I take a quick minute to share something special about each child. This gives parents a little extra time to take photos and me the chance to tell how proud I am of each of my students…

Celebrating Graduation Day by Teach Preschool

And once all the children have received their diploma or certificate, we end our celebration with a fun song the children can freely dance and have fun with…

Celebrating Graduation Day by Teach Preschool

The parents and children then all stick around and eat cake, visit with one another, and then we call it a night. I would say the entire presentation lasts about 45 minutes from walking down the isle to dancing to our last song. Because our graduation celebration is held outdoors, we don’t try and do a slide presentation but no worries, my parents have been seeing photos of everything we do in our classroom all year long in our private online forum and here on the blog.

Wrapping it all up

This year, I might change up the order or layout or the songs we sing just a bit but what will be the same this year and every year will be the focus of our celebration. The focus is always on the accomplishments my students made throughout the year and the great things that are ahead.  The graduation ceremony is designed to celebrate those things through a fun, relaxed, and simple preschool celebration.

PS. For those who are wondering about our graduation robes, we ordered them from Rhyme University this year. I hope I get them on time! As far as why we wear them? Because they are beautiful and it makes our graduates feel special. Besides all preschool age children love dressing up – especially to come to a celebration!

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Comments on this entry are closed.

1 Donna May 6, 2013 at 8:45 pm

What private online forum do you use to share info with your parets? I am considering doing this next year.

2 Deborah J. Stewart, M.Ed. May 6, 2013 at 9:06 pm

Hi Donna,
We have a “secret” group on Facebook which works well for my parents. Only those who I invite can join the group and see the group.

3 Donna May 6, 2013 at 10:47 pm

I was wondering if you used a private Facebook page. One of my co-workers uses that forum too. Thank you

4 Deborah J. Stewart, M.Ed. May 7, 2013 at 6:38 am

Yes, I do!

5 Barbaral May 6, 2013 at 9:30 pm

What a beautiful graduation –love your stage and backdrop, too.
Thanks so much for sharing what you do. We celebrate graduation, too, and each year although the middle part “changes”, we always dress the children in white (oversized tee shirt)gowns decorated with handprints of all of their classmates in different colors, plus white graduation caps and tassels with the year on them (keepsake).
Our program is in the morning , followed by cake and punch and time for goodbyes. It is most definately a time to celebrate all that our students have learned and how they have grown. The schoolyear goes by oh- so- quickly!

6 Deborah J. Stewart, M.Ed. May 7, 2013 at 6:39 am

Oh how sweet! I love that you dress them in the oversized tee shirts and that you hold your program in the morning!

7 Muslimah Coleman Pilgrim May 6, 2013 at 10:12 pm

What a simple but yet beautiful and memorable, fun graduation procession. Preparation is the same for me, we all sing songs and share little tid-bits of things learnt during the school year.

I like the part abt sharing something special abt each child for a few minutes. I would like to incorporate this aspect into my future graduations.

8 Lauralee May 7, 2013 at 8:07 pm

It looks very sweet and like you put thought into it. I’m sure it’s great memories.

9 MIRIAM FERNANDEZ BORASO May 7, 2013 at 8:17 pm

What a nice, familiar and cute celebration! I like that all your student’s share the graduation celebration! how many student’s do you have? and all the children are togehter in all the the activities during all the year? or do you have another group with another teacher?
kisses!
MIRIAM

10 Deborah J. Stewart, M.Ed. May 8, 2013 at 6:51 am

Hi Miriam,
I have 12 students total this year and they are all together throughout the school year. I have one assistant teacher as well.

11 Jennifer | The Deliberate Mom May 8, 2013 at 11:15 am

So lovely! Looks like such a wonderful celebration!

A bunch of fine graduates.
xoxo

12 Randy Robinson May 8, 2013 at 9:31 pm

I was very happy to come across your site. I teach pre-k and needed some ideas for my little ones. Thanks for the providing the other extended sits.

13 Faigie May 9, 2013 at 10:48 am

I think the problem that people may have with graduations is when the children have to memorize lines individually. I have seen parents biting their nails in nervousness for their kids and then if their kids don’t perform their parents get upset etc.
Yours is just a beautiful celebration of the end of the year with personal attention to each child

14 bridgette marume September 9, 2013 at 5:47 am

can you help us with our graduation ceremony we want to do in november,its our first time

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