The Cap and Gown thing.

I very rarely (honest!) get a bee in my bonnet about other peoples practice,  but this Cap and Gown graduation, I really don’t get it. I see endless posts on FB on how bored children get while they are asked to go up and get their scroll. Sometimes a line of 40+ children. Questions about how to speed things up ping back anf forth. Fine if you’re first! If you’re last and aged 3, it must be torture. Somebody has just posted that children’s behaviour deteriorates during this ceremony… suprise there then!


Who are the graduations for? I can’t see that they are for the children. They don’t understand the concept of graduation. Neither have they passed a test or done research (thank goodness)  to achieve cap and gown status. My daughter has just finished High school with an age appropriate Prom to mark the end of an era. So why do we give our youngest transition such an adult ceremony? Give them something age appropriate as we would always do and advocate in practice.

Our last day is fun, we have family craft, sports, play activities, and a family picnic. No waiting, no dressing up in gowns that the children don’t understand, the day is for all the family to have fun all the time, and celebrate their time with us. A thoroughly enjoyable day for all of us!

4 thoughts on “The Cap and Gown thing.

  1. We don’t have a graduating ceremony (as we are open all year round our children don’t have a last day at the same time as some finsish at the end of July and others are with us until beginning of Septwmber.) We just take a photograph wearing cap & gown as the Parents like it but I find the children enjoy it too as it’s something different but they’re only in them for about 10 minutes.


  2. Thanks for your comments Tracy. Glad your photo shoot is short. For me the cap and gown represents academic achievement, not sure 3/4 year olds understand the meaning of what they’re doing, or the message we are sending about early years? We don’t want testing, but we want them to look academically successful already. Just my opinion, maybe because I worked so hard for hours to earn my cap and gown day.


  3. I agree and had also written a blog on my website about the same thing. I feel strongly it is not relevant to the lives and developmental stage of young children. I think it is something that has snowballed and nurseries are under pressure from parents to do what other nurseries do and it also provides some advertising. It is an adult ceremony and more importantly I don’t think it aids children’s emotional transition. We are pushing children towards adulthood far too early in many other ways and this is just another adult thing being applied to children. Practitioners need to ask themselves whose needs they are meeting in dressing children in a cap and gown.


    1. Thank you for your comments. Agree with everything you’ve said! Need to reflect on what we do and why and is it in the child’s interests?


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