Thursday, May 13, 2010

Montessori Education: Ideas for Preschool / Kindergarten Graduation

NAMC montessori classroom ideas for preschool kindergarten graduation
Although not every school has a “graduation” for their Preschool / Kindergarten classes, it is common to mark the end of the year with a day where parents, teachers and children can celebrate the young students’ accomplishments. If incorporating a graduation ceremony for Kindergarten-aged children seems to fit, this also provides such an opportunity. We hope the following personal account gives you some helpful ideas.

My son loved his kindergarten year in Montessori. As the end of the year approached, he came home excited about having to make a speech for his kindergarten graduation. When I offered to help, he told me it was a ‘surprise’ and I’d hear it on the big day.

Like birthdays and the traditional Montessori “Walk Around the Sun", the passage from one plane of development to another can be marked by an intimate and informal tradition.

Montessori Education: Ideas for Preschool / Kindergarten Graduation

The passage from Children’s House to elementary, elementary to secondary, and secondary to beyond mark not only the passing of time, but the readiness of the child to advance to the next plane. Knowing that Dr. Montessori was respectful of the accomplishments of all children, handing out awards and certificates seems counter intuitive. Rather, this rite of passage should respectfully honor those graduates, welcoming them to their new adventure.

My son’s Montessori graduation involved the whole school community. It was held in the in the morning and everyone dressed up, with the graduates wearing navy blue shorts, white shirts and ties for the boys and sun dresses for the girls. They all looked so grown up! The children sat with their Montessori teachers. The younger children sang songs of friendship as the kindergarten class watched in quiet appreciation.

Then, it was time for the kindergarten class to take the stage. Each of the 16 children came forward to present a short, memorized paragraph about a Peacemaker: Ghandi, Mother Teresa, Martin Luther King, Jr., Nelson Mandela. They, too, sang songs of peace and friendship. Then, they were each called to shake the hands of the director and their teachers.

NAMC montessori classroom ideas for preschool kindergarten graduation tea partyWhen the ceremony was over, we were invited to stay for refreshments. Tables had been previously laid by the students and a simple tea was served by the graduates. What a wonderful culmination of those lessons in grace and courtesy!

As much as possible, NAMC’s web blog reflects the Montessori curriculum as provided in its teacher training programs. We realize and respect that Montessori schools are unique and may vary their schedules and offerings in accordance with the needs of their individual communities. We hope that our readers will find our articles useful and inspiring as a contribution to the global Montessori community. © the North American Montessori Center - originally posted in its entirety at Montessori Teacher Training on Thursday, May 13, 2010.

4 comments:

  1. Thank you for this post! I think I will include the "speeches" in my future "Moving On" ceremony at school. The emphasis on peace and friendship makes for such a solemn occasion. Great post!

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  2. Yeah the graduations that the Montessori schools do is well done...Simple yet a great experience for the parents and students alike and a great opportunity to meet other families with similar interests.

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  3. We do a "Butterfly" ceremony in our garden classroom. We release butterflies that we hatched in our classrooms and give each child a screen printed butterfly print. The children are "spreading their wings to new adventures" just like the real butterflies. They then walk over a bridge to meet their parents on the other side.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Lizane, your "Butterfly" ceremony sounds especially moving. I really appreciate the symbolism both of "spreading their wings" and "crossing the bridge". What long lasting memories you are building for both students and adults.

    ReplyDelete

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As much as possible, NAMC’s web blog reflects the Montessori curriculum as provided in its teacher training programs. We realize and respect that Montessori schools are unique and may vary their schedules and offerings in accordance with the needs of their individual communities. We hope that our readers will find our articles useful and inspiring as a contribution to the global Montessori community.

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