Russia’s high-school graduates said farewell this Friday, May 26, in a time-honored tradition that includes the ceremonial ringing of “the Last Bell” at schools nationwide.

According to veteran teachers, the traditions surrounding the last day of classes started in the 1950s and — ever since then — they’ve been a favorite celebration, along with graduation night itself in late June.

The trademark act of the day, still performed in every school, involves one of the male graduates carrying a little first-grader on his shoulders through the school building while the child rings a large bell.