My oldest daughter is graduating kindergarten. She has been homeschooled from day one. Our Co-Op had a lovely graduation ceremony in April. (No, we are not yet done with our schoolwork!) I apologetically invited our family to this event. I mean, kindergarten graduation? Come on! If anyone deserves a ceremony, it’s me! What are they really graduating from? Learning their letters and colors?
When I sat back for a minute, I started thinking about what these young children had accomplished. Not only had my daughter mastered her colors and the alphabet, she is a budding reader and is quickly learning mathematics.
Then, I started thinking about all she had accomplished in her short life:
She has graduated from breastfeeding to whole milk.
From rolling from back to front.
From crawling to walking.
From crying to express her needs to communicating with a wide vocabulary.
From diapers to the potty. Can I hear an ‘Amen!’
From her crib to a big girl bed.
From a car seat to a toddler seat.
From a sippy cup to a cup.
I used to think preschool and kindergarten graduations were frivolous. But after thinking about all these children have accomplished, I don’t think it’s so silly anymore. These babies have grown up. Instead of teething, the Tooth Fairy is visiting our house. Just five short years ago this sweet girl entered the world, opened her eyes and depended on me for her every need. Now she can count to 100! So I say yes. Let’s have a graduation ceremony. Let’s have a party!
What does her future look like as a kindergarten graduate? Well, in our homeschool family, it doesn’t look very different. This summer, she will be responsible for a few more chores. Next school year, she will learn more about history and discover more science experiments. She will dive deeper into math, continue mastery of cursive handwriting and learn to read more difficult material. She will continue to learn and grow, but there is not another five-year time period in her life that she will learn to do so much.
I can’t stand preschool and kindergarten (and 5th grade.. and 8th grade) graduations. Yes, much has been accomplished, but does every accomplishment have to be celebrated with an event? Isn’t an after dinner treat and a “I’m so proud of you!” sufficient anymore? It seems like no life event passes without multiple celebrations and too much money spent. Remember when people just got married and had a reception in the church hall? Now we have engagement parties, couples showers, multiple bridal showers, 3 day bachelorette parties, bridesmaids luncheons, ceremonies, receptions, after parties and send-off breakfasts. Women have been having babies for millennia, but now they also have planned and photoshopped social media pregnancy announcements, gender reveal parties, multiple baby showers, maternity pictures, birth pictures, birth story blogs and newborn pictures. E.N.O.U.G.H.
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