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Year 6 Graduation – a collaborative approach

Each year our final year Cycle 3 students – the Year 6 cohort – are celebrated in a Graduation Ceremony to farewell them from the School. In keeping with the Montessori philosophy that underpins all that we do here at North-Eastern Montessori School, we believe that Cycle 3 children can take on a high level of challenge and responsibility – preparing them for the rigors of secondary education. Allowing our Cycle 3 students meaningful responsibilities provides them with a tremendous sense of pride.

In a year that has been impacted by lockdown and distance learning, we felt that it was essential for our Year 6 students to experience organizing a large event, and what better event to be collaborative in than their own graduation party!

Within the Montessori environment the teacher/adult acts as the guide providing the students with the means to work towards whatever goal they have. Over the course of this final semester, the Year 6 students at North-Eastern have worked in small groups proposing and developing plans for their Graduation Event. With the guidance of adults within the School, they have even made some of their own enquiries about various aspects of the event.

The groups have worked on fundraising activities to help cover the cost of the event, invitation creation, and the promotion of the fundraising within the whole School community. By running – and being a big part of – the whole process, they gain a greater sense of individual power and dignity, and this autonomy helps them to have a sense of ownership about their graduation night. This in turn makes it a very powerful experience and one they can be very proud of.

The fundraising activities are diverse and well thought out, with the students identifying the options, and researching how to best achieve the desired results. They include:

Online Auction

Selling the original artworks of our Year 6 students, they have researched auction websites, setting a starting price, and promoting the auction to our School Community.

Stall of hand painted planter pots

Sourcing the pots, creating a sales brochure which describes each pot, setting a selling price, and promoting the pots within our School newsletter.

Guess the number of snakes

Creating a reason for North-Eastern community members to visit our new admin building, a gold coin will earn a guess at how many snakes are in the jar! This activity has the goal of bringing students from throughout the School into the sense of fun of these fundraising activities.

These activities have brought our Year 6 cohort together as they navigate the final few weeks of their time at our School, and at the same time enabled them to demonstrate to the other Cycle 3 students (and indeed students throughout the whole school ) what is possible when you have a goal, and some creative ideas.

Congratulations to all our Year 6 students. They have worked together so well with Allison and myself. We can’t wait to see all of these activities unfold in the coming weeks, and to celebrate their Graduation with them later in the term.

"The greatest gifts you can give your children are the roots of responsibility and the wings of independence.”
Dr Maria Montessori

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