How will you celebrate your graduate this year?
We don’t have to remind you how unfortunate it is that in-person, traditional events have been canceled due to the coronavirus pandemic.
But we think you should use this time to get creative. Because your son or daughter still put in the hard work, and these teens deserve some extra love this year.
Here are some ideas we found online:
1.) Plan a little watch party for your son or daughter to enjoy the Facebook graduation.
Facebook is celebrating the class of 2020 with a whole week of graduation features, and a commencement program.
The commencement address will be given by Oprah Winfrey herself. It’s set for 2 p.m. EST Friday.
Awkwafina, Jennifer Garner, Lil Nas X, Simone Biles, and more, will share words of wisdom. Miley Cyrus will give us a special performance of her hit song, “The Climb.”
“The ceremony will acknowledge high schools and colleges in the U.S. by name, state by state, including photos and videos of the class of 2020 and messages from deans and principals across the country,” the social media giant said in a news release-style announcement online. “The video will be shared on Facebook Watch and available at facebook.com/facebookapp. Highlights and more will be posted to the @instagram account on Instagram, and on contributors’ social media accounts.”
Grads are encouraged to host their own virtual graduation ceremony and party via Facebook, with special features including a virtual graduation hub, custom filters, family and friends celebrations enabled by Messenger Rooms, and more. Cool!
2.) Buy your grad a custom stole.
Here’s a cute Etsy shop that will make one for you!
If you browse Amazon, you can find entire graduation outfits, as well.
Not sure about either of those options, or are you just feeling like these items are expensive?
Just buy the hat!
JoAnn Fabric has a whole webpage on how you can make a graduation cap embellishment out of paper flowers.
3.) Tune in for the LeBron James special -- make it a family event!
“Graduate Together: America Honors the High School Class of 2020,” will air Saturday.
The special will feature James himself, the NBA All-Star who currently plays for the Los Angeles Lakers; Nobel prize winner Malala Yousafzai, soccer star Megan Rapinoe and musical acts Bad Bunny, the Jonas Brothers and Pharrell Williams.
It will air on ABC, CBS, Fox and NBC, as well as Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, Snapchat, TikTok and other streaming services.
“It’s been a hard few months for all of us, but I especially really feel for the senior class of 2020,” James said in a quote provided to ESPN. “The end of high school and graduation was one of the best memories of my life. It’s not fair. Every graduating senior needs to know how much we feel for them, and hopefully this can help, even a little. This class is going to be special because they know in a real way how to persevere.”
4.) Check out -- and get involved! -- in this fun group inspired by the Dr. Seuss classic.
Everyone knows the book “Oh, the Places You’ll Go!”, right?
Now there’s a Facebook group by the same name, established to share people’s stories and experiences of the year, and celebrate graduation.
Earlier this month, John Cena even joined in on the fun.
Honor your son or daughter with a special post, message or shoutout. Include a picture! Comment on other people’s posts. It’s pretty fun to scroll through the page and learn about all the different grads from all over the world.
5.) Get a customized yard sign or banner.
Did you have any idea there were so many options in this department?
Just start Googling and you’ll be floored by all your choices. You can get yard signage, banners, head-cutouts -- the sky is the limit!
6.) Host a drive-by celebration.
OK, your grad might roll his or her eyes at this idea, but we love the thought of getting your teen in some sort of graduation outfit (maybe that stole you just ordered?), asking people to bring signs or words of encouragement, and hosting a little event outside your home. If everyone stayed in their cars and maintained social distancing guidelines, there’s no reason why you couldn’t do it. It’ll be like a parade.
Here’s an example. This is a birthday party and not a graduation, but you’ll see the general idea!
7.) And if you’re going to host a drive-able event ...
Leave out some favors!
Again, you’ll have to figure out how to do this in a “socially distanced” way to be truly safe -- but it’s kind of like picking up groceries or take-out food from a restaurant: your guests will grab their goody bags, come home, throw away the packaging and wash their hands. Health officials have said they’re not overly concerned about coronavirus spreading through packaging.
8.) Treat your grad to a special at-home celebration.
Just because you can’t physically go to as many places (like restaurants!) doesn’t mean you can’t still roll out the red carpet.
Take this opportunity to cook an incredible at-home meal, or order carryout from your teen’s favorite restaurant. Purchase your grad a gift online, if that’s within your budget or it was something you were planning on anyway. Maybe even set up a Zoom call from your dinner table, so that your other family members and friends can be included. If you’re inviting your teen’s fellow grads, we love this game.
Set up your house in a cute way; maybe leave out some old photos and decorate. There are so many possibilities here!
9.) How about a video scrapbook?
Since all your pictures are digital these days anyway, it would probably be easy enough to set up a video or virtual scrapbook. Sites like Shutterfly are likely a great place to start.
h/t on some of these ideas: Parade magazine
OK, what did we miss? Can you think of any additional ideas, or anything you’re already planning on that didn’t make our list? Drop us your suggestions in the comments!