This time of year is graduation time. When I was a child the only graduations we received were from high school or college. In my grandmother's generation they graduated from eighth grade and went to college. Now there are kindergarten, elementary school, middle school, high school, and college graduations.
I am old school and think graduations for every level, such as, completing pre-school, kindergarten, elementary school, and junior high, is a bit much. In the preschool through junior high years, children may be graded and tested, but they are moved ahead by age, into the next grade, and not by skill mastery or knowledge acquisition. On the other hand, high school students must pass the course, earn the credit, and accumulate enough credits to graduate. That is why we used to hold graduations for the completing enough high school credits to graduate, but not for lower grade transitions. High School Graduation was and still is a real accomplishment.
Commencement into Adult Life
I think should celebrate graduations for completing one’s home education journey, before attending college; a commencement into adult life. Some state homeschool organizations and some larger co-ops/commonwealth schools hold graduations. Homeschooling is legal in every state. The homeschool transcript is a permanent record. The homeschool diploma is a legal document. So, why not hold your own graduation? Have the graduate speak and invite a guest speaker. Invite family and friends. While most schools do the cap and gown, others in the past have had the men wear a suit and the young women wear a semi-formal white dress. Set up a display sharing what your new graduate has been learning and achieving. Offer refreshments. Send out announcements!
Evening of Eloquence
I am all for celebrating learning! An annual Evening of Eloquence is a way to celebrate the learning journey of each homeschool year. Invite friends and family to the celebration. Give each child an opportunity to dress up, take the spotlight, address the gathering, and share the highlights of this year's learning. Let each child set up a display for other guests to see and celebrate their learning with them. Mom and dad, celebrate your learning journey too! Plan a dinner or refreshments to serve your guests.
Celebrating learning helps your children see and understand that you value learning, the learning progress they are making, and also helps others share the joy in the journey.
Enjoy the Journey!
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