Weird black hats you joke about balancing your pint on. A roll of paper that’s just a prop for the real certificate. Forced formal pictures in a black gown, that will end up on your Mum’s hallway table for the next 45 years. Laughing and throwing things into the air in happiness for THAT group photo.
Good fun and par for the course when you’re 21 and leaving uni with an actual degree of some sort. Right?
Oh no no no, dear friend. Nowadays you can ‘graduate’ from nursery. Aged 3. And have your very own ‘graduation ceremony’ too. Blows. My. Mind.
I’m all for celebrating little people’s achievements with a cuddle or a photo, or a nice word or ‘good job!’ sticker from teacher. But I really can’t get on board with mini humans ‘graduating’. Brilliant – they’ve learnt where to tidy away the play dough. Well done – nice lining up all welly-booted and ready to go out in the garden. Such independence – washing and drying hands on their own! But graduating? No. Little Charlie’s going up a room. or leaving nursery for pre-school round the corner. That is it.
It’s still a big deal, I know. I don’t mean to downplay the nice bits of parenting when you get involved with nursery or school. It’s lovely to have some time to talk to the staff, recognise their progress, and take home the book of out-of-focus dog-eared photos and forced personal development stories (which deserves a post of its own). But why do three years olds have to ‘graduate’?
(Can you tell I’m cross about the word with all the ‘inverted commas’?)
No. To earn your ‘graduation’ you need to have learnt how to make it into a 9am tutorial less than 5 minutes late, how to split your electricity bill and chase your housemates for a cheque, and how to get through lectures whilst trying not to throw up into your handbag.
All while you work out who you are as a young adult and study just the right amount to come out of uni with a decent degree. Before you decide to do something completely different with your career…
What’s next? Prom parties at nursery?!