Don’t get me wrong. I think the parents who host these parties mean well. But the question is: are they helping or ultimately hurting their kids? What are they going to expect when (and if) they actually accomplish something of significance like earn a doctorate? A trip to Aruba and a $10,000 diamond ring?
I mean, what are we celebrating exactly? Are there kids in the class that didn't graduate? Is this the “everyone gets a trophy mentality?” Or is it like a co-worker of mine said, “you’re just mad you didn’t get gifts when you graduated high school.” That’s only partially true. Or even fair. I remember having a get together with a bunch of my friends and I don’t recall gifts being part of the festivities. We just had fun. I didn’t get gifts and never expected to get any. And that was at least high school. For graduating from pre-school here are a dozen red roses, a big gift and a night on the town. What are these kids going to expect when they graduate from high school, college or get married? Are we setting kids up for a lifetime of disappointments?
What happened to kids doing well just for the innate satisfaction of doing well? These are the kids that expect to be rewarded for putting their own dishes in the dishwasher, or picking up their own clothes. I know most of you think I’m crazy to put down these events. They are all over Facebook and the Internet. Go ahead. Google it. Pre-school graduation party. This is such a big idea for most people in America that someone even bought the name (preschoolgraduationpartyideas.com) Look at all the Pinterest ideas related to pre-school graduation parties.
Let me try and get inside the head of the kid. “O.K. so I graduated from pre-school and I get presents and get treated like a princess or prince….pretty sweet! Hmmmm I wonder “What do I get if I get my homework done, what do I get if I clean up my room.” “What do I get if I....” I could give one hundred more and so could you. We are teaching our children something. The question is what?
I have two girls. Emma (4), and Esther (2). They will not be receiving a $50 gift when they graduate pre-school, kindergarten, or middle school. We might go out as a family and grab some ice-cream. I hope they learn that nothing in life is free and they need to earn everything they get. I hope they learn that life is really hard and it’s only grit and determination that will get you anywhere. And most of all, I hope they learn that I love them so much, I won’t do what what is popular but what I think is right.
I have no problem with you adding a comment to disagree with me! Just don’t be hard on me because we all have the right to our own opinion.
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