By MHA News – Highlands Ranch, Colorado … Amidst smiles, waves, and swinging tassels, 14 Mile High Academy kindergarteners stood tall as they marched into the gym toward their future as first graders on May 18.

Those gathered, online and in-person, for this special event, were welcomed by the students followed by a prayer thanking God for “our families and our kindergarten graduation.”

A lively rendition of The Butterfly Song brought smiles and many broke into laughter as students read their parent tributes, which included words of love for their family members, thankfulness that their family feeds them, does the dishes and laundry, reads books, plays with them, and helps them when they’re hurt.

Together, the students sang the song Growing in Jesus with lyrics expressing how the graduates were learning to love all God’s children, how they were trusting in Jesus, becoming a friend of Jesus, and how Jesus is growing in them.

After receiving their certificates and moving the tassels on their caps, they recited a humorous poem about completing kindergarten and being in first grade. Alissa Armendariz, kindergarten teacher, shared her pride in the class by mentioning challenges they’ve faced and how they’ve overcome.

“It has been a difficult and challenging year for us all,” said Armendariz. “Among the many COVID related challenges was teaching students to form proper letter sounds while wearing a mask. The students learned well even with the many classroom differences, and we worked together to make this year a success. I am so thankful the students could be together with their friends most of the school year and am so proud of this graduating class.”

Before walking out the door, the graduates were already focused on summer plans. Jack said he was grateful Armendariz was his teacher and will miss her, but is looking forward to first grade after a summer of “playing with my new volleyball net, going camping, riding on my dirt bike and playing at the pool.”

Devyn really liked her teacher too and enjoyed being in her class. This summer she is “going on some trips, playing in the pool and having fun being with my family.”

The ceremony concluded with attendees reciting the following prayer, a slightly edited version Armendariz prayed before they left campus each day: “May God bless you and keep you as you go out from here today. May He bring you back safely next year. Remember you are loved, you are special, and you are worthy.”

To watch the kindergarten graduation ceremony, visit

–MHA News; photos supplied