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Graduation

10 tips for hosting an epic kindergarten graduation party

Everything you need to celebrate your special kindergarten graduate

A group of five smiling kindergarten graduates in red grad gowns and caps. Credit: Getty Images / Courtney Hale

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All of their milestones are going by so fast. It seems like just yesterday they were learning their first words, and today they are graduating from kindergarten and looking forward to first grade. What could be more meaningful than marking a child's first major educational rite of passage with a party for family and friends?

Kindergarten is a special time. It sets the stage for the rest of your child's education and graduating from it deserves a special celebration. Here are some of our best tips and ideas for the ultimate kindergarten graduation party, to show your little grad just how proud of them you are.

1. Find a theme

Kids enjoying a party by a small camping-style tent
Credit: Getty Images / Portishead1

Find a theme your kid loves and run with it.

Themes don't have to be anything too elaborate, but they are a great way to tie things together. They can help you figure out decorations, games, and food ideas. Some of our favorite themes, to help you get the ideas going are:

  • Now I Know My ABCs: Your kindergarten graduate can show off their skills as they celebrate their achievements.
  • Kinder Garden: A garden-themed party will celebrate how they've bloomed in school this year.
  • Dr. Seuss: Oh, the places they'll go, now that they've graduated from preschool.
  • Happy Camper: They're about to embark on a new adventure!
  • Blast-off to the Future: A rocket ship-themed party will celebrate the big launch forward this occasion represents.
  • Summer Vacation: Summer time, and the living is easy!

2. Get them an epic graduation cap

Two mortarboard grad caps: One is pandemic-themed and the other is Star Wars theme.
Credit: ZoeysAttic / TasselToppers

Who doesn't love a fun and personalized grad cap?

A grad cap is an iconic symbol of scholastic success. Creative grad caps are attention grabbers that show off the personal style of the wearer. You can either let your little graduate DIY-decorate their own cap, or find a fun and creative one that you can special order for the occasion. We are partial to these Etsy finds for perfectly personalized toppers.

3. Set up a party piñata

A little girl with a popsicle piñata
Credit: Meri Meri

We've never met a kid who didn't love piñatas.

Kindergarten was a smashing success! We’ve never met a kid that doesn’t love a piñata. The suspense of seeing who will serve the final blow before it breaks open and showers down toys and candy treats is always a party winner. This popsicle-themed piñata screams, “School’s out for the summer!”

4. Coordinate a fun photo booth

A child smiles from behind a graduation-themed photo frame.
Credit: Oriental Trading Company

Get some commemorative snaps with this fun frame.

Give your kid another reason to smile during their party with some photo props. A frame and some silly props are just right for making memories with some celebratory snapshots of with their favorite party guests.

5. Organize some celebratory party games

Kids playing charades and a photo of Picture Charades game
Credit: Getty Images / JackF / Outset Games

Plan ahead with fun games that all-ages can play.

Kindergarteners aren’t known for small-talk and mingling, so it’s best to prepare for the party with some entertaining party games. Picture Charades is a hilarious spin on the classic game of charades and is pre- and early-reader friendly with its picture prompt cards. Be ready for some hilarious outcomes as players act out everything, from the predictable (like people and animals) to the absurd (like toasters and bathtubs). You really haven’t lived until you’ve seen a six-year-old pretend to be a bathtub.

Get Picture Charades on Amazon for $16.49

6. Craft a kid-friendly cocktail to toast your grad

A Shirley Temple and a set of colorful acrylic glasses
Credit: Getty Images / Lauri Patterson / EggFoil

A Shirley Temple is perfect for toasting your kindergarten graduate.

It’s the drink of our childhood, that we all still secretly love. Make everyone feel like a kid again when you toast your special graduate with the quintessential childhood cocktail, the Shirley Temple. The traditional way to make this non-alcoholic mixed drink is with ginger ale and a splash of grenadine, garnished with a maraschino cherry, but some like to get creative with a splash of lime (giving it a little bit of Ricky twist) or a wedge of orange. However you make it, it’s going to make your kinder grad feel special.

Get the EggFoil set of six 8 ouce acrylic tumblers on Amazon for $16.99

7. Make way for a memorable cake

Two Milkbar cakes: birthday and strawberry shortcake
Credit: Milkbar

Our reviewers say that Milkbar is your best bet for baked goods.

It's a special day, get a special cake. Our reviewers wax poetic about the delicious decadence of Milk Bar cakes and pastries. Desserts are flash frozen and shipped nationwide so they arrive at the peak of freshness. As our reviewer, who is intimately familiar with Milk Bar cakes, explained: This isn’t your average cake. Their 6-inch Milk Bar Birthday Cake may look small but "it's deceivingly dense, and easily serves 8 to 12 people" making one a perfect party size for a family gathering.

Order treats from Milk Bar starting at $20

8. Bring on the bubbles

A group of kids of all ages blow bubbles
Credit: BubbleTree

Bubbles are fun, are easier to clean up than confetti, and kids love creating them.

Confetti is crazy to clean up. Bubbles say “here’s the party” without the mess. These eco-friendly bubbles by BubbleTree are a favorite of ours for being sustainably made and for being a genuinely superior bubble product.

If you’ve ever had a little one try to blow bubbles from cheap, watered-down bubble solution, you know how frustrating it can be for them when their bubbles pop almost as soon as they are formed. There will be no more tears from your tiniest bubble-makers: The recipe for these bubbles is not only non-toxic, but it results in forming better, stronger bubbles—which are way more fun to play with.

Shop BubbleTree bubbles and refill station at Amazon

9. Get them jumping around

A big colorful bounce house.
Credit: Leadzm

A bounce house basically guarantees everyone will have fun.

Sure, you can rent a bounce house for the occasion but, if you have the space, this will be the graduation gift that keeps on giving. This well-priced bounce house will take you through the summer and subsequent birthday parties. It might even regularly tire them out so they go to bed early all summer long.

Get the Leadzm 3-play-area bounce house with 450 watt blower at Overstock for $249.99

10. Set up some sweet tunes to get the party started

A group of kindergarteners dancing
Credit: Getty Images / Linderina

Let the kids have a hand in making their party playlist.

It’s not a party without some dancing. You’re going to need a reliable and durable wireless Bluetooth speaker to get things going. Our favorite is the Anker Soundcore 2, for it’s terrific price point, its 24-hour battery life, and for its waterproof durability.

Set the kids loose on creating their own playlist with the family-friendly Spotify for Kids app. This app lets kids discover and select kid-friendly songs, so you can let them take charge of the tunes without worry. While you may feel safe knowing that they won’t accidentally cue up Run the Jewels with Aunt Ruth seated nearby, we can’t guarantee this independence won't result in an “It’s Raining Tacos” or "I'm a Gummy Bear" marathon.

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