Before we discuss how to run a Preschool Graduation ceremony, take a moment to think about why to hold a graduation ceremony.
Many child care centers do not hold a graduation ceremony because it is too much work, the children attend school all year round, or for any number of other reasons.
However, by teaching graduation themes throughout the year, children learn the importance of education. Celebrating milestones and educational achievements helps give children a sense of accomplishment and pride. Parents appreciate seeing the skills their children have learned and gain insight into the educational concepts learned throughout the year.
Transition to kindergarten
Celebrating graduation also gives teachers and families the opportunity to transition into kindergarten. Easing children into the transition to school is a huge benefit in their future learning experiences.
The ability of students to fully engage in and benefit from their kindergarten experiences has been shown to depend on the degree to which they successfully transition into kindergarten, and the success of that transition is at least partially predicated on their home and early educational backgrounds.
Read more: Facilitating the Transition to Kindergarten
To help ensure the PreK child has the skills required for kindergarten, Dr. Day Care teachers complete an assessment on each child. This helps to guide the conversation between teachers and parents, as well as to provide the kindergarten teacher with helpful information. See below for a sample of the questions asked:
Teach kindergarten readiness skills
At Dr. Day Care, our preschool students no longer take afternoon naps after their graduation ceremony. This added time in the day provides teachers with more time to focus on improving children’s kindergarten readiness skills.
The actual graduation ceremony itself celebrates accomplishments such as learning numbers and letters, learning to write your name, measuring using the metric system, learning new words in foreign languages, learning sign language, and so much more! Children also learn to value nature through outdoor play and to value friendships from the social relationships developed during preschool. Most importantly, preschoolers learn that they are kept safe, cared, and nurtured by other people besides just parents, guardians, friends, or family members.
There are many books the class can read together to prepare for kindergarten:
- Mrs. Bindergarten Gets Ready for Kindergarten
Joseph Slate, Ashley Wolff
- The Night Before Kindergarten
Natasha Wing, Julie Durrell
- Edgar Graduates
Dr. Mary Ann Shallcross Smith
Read the following lesson to review how you can incorporate graduation themes into learning centers in your classroom.