Sunday, January 15, 2017

Valentine's Day in the Classroom

No pun intended, but we love celebrating Valentine's Day in our classroom. Here are a few of our favorite ways to celebrate Love Day with the Littles...
Valentine's Day in the classroom
Valentine's Day classroom party ideas
We throw a Red Party every Valentine's Day in our classroom. From red foods to wearing red, we embrace the color of love all day long. As you can see, we try to keep it somewhat healthy with bagels, strawberry cream cheese, and red fruits. The kids are so excited and don't even notice the donuts are missing.
Valentine's Day classroom party ideas
We sneak in a little reading and writing by creating Friendship Bingo mats using our class names and other Valentine's Day vocabulary.  
We give them conversation hearts as markers. They love being the "callers" when we play this Valentine's Day game! It's also a great activity to work on during February centers. A classroom volunteer or the kids themselves (as they become more independent) can be the Friendship Bingo callers.
You can download our Red Party and Friendship Bingo templates {here}.
 
Our class loves making bookmarks. These are nothing fancy, but given a simple piece of red posterboard, foam stickers, yarn, and...wait for it...MARKERS, they love crafting these to declare their love for reading!
 
Hot Spot Relay races are a fun challenge that gets them outside, moving and practicing teamwork too. We simply cut 2 large construction paper hearts out for each team (cut a few extras in case there is an accidental rip). Split the class in half and send them walking their way on the hot spots. The goal is to move each heart as you step, not stepping on the ground (AKA "hot lava") below. It's tricky, but they get the hang of it. For younger kids, don't have them take as many steps. Once they reach the end, they pick up their hot spots and run back to the start to tag the next person.
Back in class, we race to stack 10 conversation hearts. You can adjust the number depending upon the age of the kids.
 
Of all the activities we do on Valentine's Day, our favorite is giving our students an opportunity to spread kindness. We spread some love around our school by creating and posting kindness messages throughout the halls.
Kindness activities for the classroom
We also spend a lot of time teaching and giving compliments. It is one of our most powerful lessons all year and carries us through the months beyond Valentine's Day. Here's our original post about using Compli-mats in the classroom. We've updated our templates and added several more for use beyond Valentine's Day.  
Compli-Mats for building empathy and kindness in the classroom
 You can download our Compli-mats activity for free in our TpT Shop.
Are you ready to celebrate Valentine's Day in your classroom? What's your favorite way to spend Love Day? 

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