Fourth Grade Graduation | Big Deal or No Big Deal


Kindergarten, fourth grade and everything in between. Are these little celebrations really a big deal?

It seems like these days we are celebrating every event possible. No matter how little, there is a card for that or a party to throw. It can get a bit overwhelming with all the extras that are now deemed necessary.

You have the big ones such as Christmas. Then finally you settle back down and this thing called Valentine’s Day rolls around and you need to find a shoebox to turn into a panda for exchanging candy. Bring on birthdays, anniversaries, second Tuesday of next week and here we are celebrating every little thing.

It’s a bit overwhelming and truthfully some things we just play down.

Like that Leprechaun.

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Funny enough even though I told my youngest he probably only hangs out at school, somehow we still ended up with blue glitter all over the floors (as a trail) and on the bathroom counter.

Of course she had no idea how that happened.

Must be the Leprechaun.

When my oldest was in Kindergarten there wasn’t any big graduation and I was perfectly fine with that. But last year my youngest walked down that cafeteria aisle and silly tears welled up in my eyes as I refused to cry.


The fourth grade graduation invitation arrived two weeks before the big event and even though I thought it was a little silly, we marked it on the calendar.

The big day arrived and she dressed up in her favorite romper and we braided her hair in a half ponytail.

Parents, grandparents and other family members dressed to the nines, filed into the school cafeteria to find the best seat for taking a photo or two.

The Pomp and Circumstance began playing over the speakers as the class, one by one, made their way around the audience and into their seats. Our daughter smiled as she walked by and the graduation began.

And in that moment I could see exactly why we should celebrate.


We’ve watched them grow from tiny humans into the most wonderful kids. Kids that pushed the limits at times but are curious and kind. We watched them take their first steps and then stumble and fall with a reassuring “it’s ok” along the way. We’ve pushed them on the swings until they learned to do it on their own and then we watched them get on that school bus for the first time.

Little girl steps onto a big yellow bus.

In Kindergarten we are celebrating their first year of school. Maybe this was the first time they have ever spent this much time away from their parents. They’re getting a little piece of independence and making friends in a space that wasn’t selected by mom. Finding out who they are and taking the best things they’ve learned at home, with them to school.

This was their first of many last days of school. But this was their first school year ever.

First day of Kindergarten sign.


Graduating from fourth they’ve made friends, lost friends and navigated hurt feelings on the playground. They’ve worked hard on reading and maybe struggled in math. But they did it. For many they’ve spent their entire school years at this elementary school. Celebrating Thanksgiving with a turkey craft project and singing along to Silent Night in the school Christmas concert.

This was their last year in elementary school.

Schoolwork activity books.

They’re moving on to middle school where things get far more complicated. Friendships will get more complicated. Schoolwork will get more complicated and those kids crafts with the turkey, just might not happen the way they had in elementary school.

They are on the verge of not just being a big kid, but really being a big kid.

So we should celebrate.

We should celebrate how far they’ve come because even though they still have a way to go, celebrating these little accompaniments make the road ahead that much easier.

Fourth Grade bulletin.

The graduation slideshow of their school year made them laugh. From the first day, to the silly 100th day, to wacky hair day, to smoothy day.

Her name was called and she walked down the aisle to receive her graduation certificate. The principal shook her hand you could see just how proud our daughter was. How proud they all were as they felt a sense of achievement and went back to their seats.

As they stood to make their grand exit our daughter rounded the corner to walk down the aisle, her foot caught the chair and I watched her stumble and fall.

I gave her a reassuring “it’s ok” as she passed by with a bright red face. Sometimes in life, that just happens.

We’ll try again in high school.

Celebrating can look like different things

Not everyone can celebrate in the same way and that’s ok. You might not be able to get the time off work or younger children might make it difficult to attend.

Celebrating these little moments can look as simple as picking up ice cream and cones from the store for an extra special treat. I’ve learned that it’s best not to look around to what others are doing, but to just do you.

And being with the ones you love is exactly the point.

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