The class of 2010 will soon be sporting caps and gowns and parading across stages everywhere. And whether the students in your life are graduating from pre-school, high school, college or a post-graduate degree program, they deserve kudos and celebration.
From big graduation parties to intimate family gatherings, here are some ways to make it festive and fun.
- Start with an announcement. This will let people know when and where so they can start making plans to attend the ceremony and/or party. Oftentimes, invitations to the ceremony are handled by the school and you just distribute them. Announcements let people know it’s coming – kind of like a Save the Date card for a wedding (LINK TO save the date post) – and can invite people to any parties you have planned for the graduate. FedEx Office Design & Print Center has some great templates to work from. If you want to get really creative, you could even print announcements or invitations, roll them into little diplomas and tie with black satin ribbon.
- Make a banner for the graduate. Nothing says party like a bigger-than-life congratulatory banner. Even better, if can double as a keepsake if you let guests sign it using a permanent marker.
- Use posters. Remember all those years of school photos? No doubt they’ll take you down memory lane and send guests oohing and ahhing at those precious younger years. Find as many as you can and make posters to show the graduate through the years. You may even get a giggle or two from the dated haircuts and fashion choices!
- Create an “Advice for the Graduate” book. Remind your graduate that there is always more to learn in life! Prominently place a blank journal on a table at the event and encourage guests to inscribe a page with their words of wisdom on life and love. If you think they’ll need a gentle reminder about the book’s purpose when you’re not nearby, just make up a quick sign with instructions on the “assignment.”
And if you have a little more time while party-planning to get really creative, guest blogger Stephanie Buttrill made a unique guest book for her wedding, but it would also work well for graduations. See how she made the book here. Guests and well-wishers can slip their advice into the envelopes and the graduate can enjoy reading them over and over again.
One last tip: my very favorite book, Oh the Places You’ll Go by Dr. Seuss makes an inspiring graduation gift. If your graduate already owns it, tell them to give it another read!