Students have celebrated Valentine’s Day since preschool. I don’t have enough time for this. We haven’t even finished our unit yet. These are some thoughts you may have surrounding celebrating holidays and traditions in the classroom. So, we’re going to discuss:
- Why should I?
- Student Buy-in
- Activity Ideas
- Activities throughout the day/week
Why Should I Have a Valentine’s Party?
Just like teachers, students have been working hard. Everyone deserves a break. Especially during this pandemic. Students need to do activities that allow them to practice their social-emotional skills and what better way to do that than a party? Additionally, Valentine’s parties do NOT need to take a long time and some students thrive with the tradition. Students are going to be hyped up anyway, so they will not be as engaged in academic material.
Well, you know some upper elementary students are too cool for school. You may be wondering, “What if my students don’t like what I plan?” “What if my students don’t participate?” You NEED to get some buy-in from your students. I usually pick most of the activities, but will take some suggestions from my more challenging students. This will allow them to be more engaged. Also, make sure you build those relationships and participate too. If you’re embarrassed to do something, the students most likely are too.
The fun part. It’s the day of the party. You need to have your activities planned! Here are 5 MUST activities to try!
- Make Valentine’s bags. Combine a craft with something they’ll use! You can find information on how to make these Valentine bags here Pros: Minimal prep, allows for students to use
Cons: Students may take varying time to complete this activity
2.Engage students in these STEM activities
Pros: Students are engaged, practices SEL skills
Cons: Students can get very riled up during STEM activities, some students may not participate as much as others, could get expensive
3.Minute to Win It: https://teachmama.com/minute-to-win-it-class-party/
Pros: Students are engaged, minimal prep work
Cons: Does not take very long
4. Eat! Chocolate covered pretzels make for a great snack!
Pros: Yum! Quick and easy to make
Cons: May not be considered a “healthy” snack
5. The matching game and dice game are sure to be hit! https://www.happinessishomemade.net/best-fun-valentine-games-for-kids/
Pros: Student engagement!
Cons: Students may be disappointed with the outcome
Valentine’s Themed Activities
For some reason, you don’t have a Valentine’s Day party. You can still do Valentine’s themed activities throughout the week and month! Here are some of my favorites to incorporate into lessons, centers or use for early finishers!
BONUS TIP: Have the families help you! Ask families to bring in supplies or be volunteers in the classroom to help manage the activities!