It is no longer unusual for schools to hold a kindergarten, or pre-kindergarten, graduation. Some feel that this small ceremony encourages children to believe that they can and will graduate from high school. The newest trend is for schools to hold “Pre-K proms”. Understandably, parents have mixed feelings about this.
A prom is usually something that is for high school students. Teenagers (or their parents) spend a lot of money on tickets to the prom, the nice clothing the teen will wear to the prom, and perhaps some extras like dinner at a fancy restaurant or a limo to get the teenagers where they need to go.
Typically, prom is considered to be an important experience in the life of a high school student. It has been said that the preparation for prom – the ceremonial aspects, the fancy clothing that matches their date, the hiring of a limo – gives teenagers a glimpse into what it would be like to plan their wedding.
Senior prom can be looked at as a rite of passage (something we don’t have much of in the United States). There are people who, for whatever reason, did not attend their senior prom and who have regretted that decision ever since.
None of those justifications explain the need to have a pre-kindergarten prom, though. What should parents know about Pre-K proms? Dr. Sanam Hafeez is a psychologist who specializes in working with children. She points out that a Pre-K prom can “blur the boundary between childhood and teenhood.” It can put a lot of unnecessary pressure on a very young child.
Some parents have expressed concerns online about the idea of putting makeup on a pre-kindergartener. Others disapprove of the low cut dresses they have seen some children wearing at Pre-K proms.
Dr. Hafeez thinks that the choosing of a Pre-K Prom King and Queen is too much for a preschooler to handle. A young child might wonder why those two kids are “better” than they are. High schoolers can feel that way, too, if they were not selected to be the prom King or Queen.
Some parents, who are in favor of Pre-K proms, think the entire event is adorable. They think that the tiny kids, who are dressed like teenagers and dancing with each other, is incredibly cute. They see the Pre-K prom as something fun for their child to do in a safe environment.
It is important for parents to think about why they want their little one to attend a Pre-K prom. Is this something your child truly has an interest in? Or, is this a way for you get a “second chance” after missing out on your own high school prom?
Image by Jennifer Schwalm on Flickr.
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