When to Start Planning for the Graduation
To allow enough time for planning the graduation, I suggest that you start planning six months in advance. This includes: planning the date of the graduation, creating a list of what you will need for the graduation and getting feedback from parents.
How to Prepare the Children
The children are definitely the spot light of the graduation and you definitely want to prepare them for the event. I suggest that you begin preparing the children for their graduation activities, 3 weeks before the ceremony. It has been my experience that it only takes approximately 3-weeks of singing songs and memorizing poems.
To assure that the children are not nervous and are excited to sing in front of their parents, their friends and other family members; be sure to prepare them to smile and get excited!
Information to Provide to Parents
Ninety-days prior to graduation day, invite the parents to give you their feedback or ideas for your upcoming preschool graduation. Parents usually have really good ideas and this is also a great way to ask them to run errands for you to assure that you have all that you need for the graduation.
After you get the parents feedback, prepare a letter announcing the graduation, date and time. The letter should also include how many guest that the family can invite, how long the ceremony will be, what the children should wear, graduation cap/gown fees (see resource link for cap/gowns) and a detail of what will take place at the graduation. Be sure to include graduation clip art and insert the names of your preschool graduates in the letter.
How to Get Parent Involved
After you have decided what you will need for the graduation day, invite parents to help you to decorate, assist with the other children the day of the graduation, pick up decorations, order the cake or simply help the graduates get dressed in their cap and gowns. Whatever you need parents to do, it is best to create a sign-up sheet for the graduation event and invite parents to get involved. (see sample sign-up sheet)
Ideas for what you will need
Here are a few ideas for what you will need for the graduation:
- Order cap and/or gowns for the graduates (require that parents pay the fees)
- Graduation songs/poems (see links below)
- Graduation Diplomas (comes with cap/gown, see link below)
- Invitation for the event (comes with cap/gown)
- Prepare a few special words to say to the children
- Invite their friends to make a large Good bye card with their hand prints painted on the poster board
- Graduation Cake, refreshments, paper plates and napkins
- Balloons, streamer and graduation sign for the front yard (congratulating graduates)
- Graduation Music (get cd at party store)
- Graduation Card Box for graduates
- Special gift from you to the graduates; to present the day of the graduation
Planning the Graduation Day/Activities
I think by this point, you may already know how you want to plan your graduation day. It really does not have to be a long event; In fact, I suggest that the event last know longer than 45-minutes to an hour. Simply create an agenda for the event and have fun. Here is a sample agenda:
- The entrance of the graduates (music playing)
- The children begin to sing songs
- Reciting of Poems
- The children will share what they loved most about preschool
- Special words from you
- issuing of Diplomas (pictures)
- Introduce your class of 20….. to the parents
- Invite kids to toss hats!
- Serve refreshments/gifts
- Wrap up-the event
Here are some photos from my 2011 Graduation!
Task for this week….
- Visit your local party supply store to get ideas for your graduation
- Visit the resource links below
- Get ideas from other providers and parents
- Create your plan