6/02/2006

Accomplishments

It's that time of year again...Graduation time. Last night my niece graduated from 8th grade except they don't call it graduation anymore, instead it's a 'promotion'. I suppose the lingo is more fitting since really that's what she's doing, being promoted to high school. A week before her little step sister 'graduated' from pre-school and they call it graduation and nothing else. I have to tell you I'm a bit put off by the whole concept of graduating from pre-school. Being raised by an English professor has instilled in me the notion that in this lifetime we should be rewarded for accomplishment not for simply existing from day to day. Now I know it's quite popular to have these sort of 'graduation ceremonies' for these tots but honestly what are we teaching these children? It's not that I think that at age 4 or 5 you have not accomplished something...in fact these kids have accomplished a great deal, it's that when it comes down to it who are we having these ceremonies for - the kids or the adults? I believe that when a child stands up on a stage and receives a diploma they should know exactly what it means. Why not call these 'ceremonies' a celebration, a party, or heck...a promotion? It reminds me slightly of those parents who enter their children in beauty pageants, dress them up like dolls and place them on a stage to perform. It seems that so often we spend so much time having parties and graduation ceremonies that we forget to teach these kids the more important things in life like values and morals. Maybe I think about this a little too much but when I talked to my niece last night and she down played the importance of her own 'graduation' because her 5 year old sister had the same ceremony a week earlier - I saw exactly what we're teaching our children. It's like if you give someone a present every single day and then their birthday rolls around and you give them another gift, the present has little meaning because one - they expect it, and two it happens too often so there is nothing special in the gesture.

I tried to make my niece realize how important this day was for her. It's a passage from childhood into young adult hood, a chance to begin a new. She left me with some very wise words that I wish more children heard and believed..."I want to be rewarded for the things I accomplish not the things I fall into by circumstance." My sweet darling niece has already become a wonderful teacher.

Happy Friday all....

7 Comments:

  1. k o w said...
    Wow that thought is quite profound for someone so young.

    I remember walking away from my 8th grade graduation without saying goodbyes to anyone. I've regretted that since.
    Tab said...
    Hey Net
    Just zipping by to wish you a relaxing and fun weekend.Hope you have recouped from your last weekend.
    WDKY said...
    Amazing, NWC... and I agree with your sentiments 100%. Have a fantastic weekend, and you can give your neice a kiss from me when you next see her!
    Caterpillar said...
    Your niece seems to definitely take after you. She's a very deep thinker for someone so young.
    kimmyk said...
    Ahhh a wise one there!

    Kids today are so much wiser than we were at their age aren't they?

    Sad in a way.
    oregoncelticlady said...
    She will go far!
    NML said...
    She's very wise!

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