Students at Cornerspring Montessori School participated in a ceremony and parade Wednesday morning, Sept. 29, all of which was aimed at increasing the peace around the world.

The festivities were in recognition of the United Nations International Day of Peace, which was officially observed at Montessori schools around the globe Sept. 21. Cornerspring staff opted to hold the peace celebration just over a week later to allow more time for students to learn songs, create art and read stories on the subject of peace. This was the third year that Cornerspring students have held the peace celebration.

Each child carried a white paper dove made in their classrooms, and some students wore face paint and hats made of colored construction paper.

The children gathered in a circle to sing “Light a Candle for Peace,” and to observe a moment of silence before welcoming Marc Archambault from White Doves of Maine. Archambault brought a white dove to be released at the end of the ceremony, and allowed each child to view the bird up close prior to its release.

Two Cornerspring students released the dove from a heart-shaped white basket just before the kickoff of the peace parade, which wound through the athenahealth parking lot. At the head of the parade line, students carried a rainbow banner and hoisted an enormous white dove made by students at the school two years ago. The parade procession stopped in front of the Bank of America daycare center, where children were waiting on the front lawn to hear the Cornerspring youths perform a song.

Once the parade ended back at Cornerspring, children were offered bulbs to plant in front of the school as part of their message of spreading peace.