Five on Friday: Valentine Ideas!

I promise a math update tomorrow, but today's "Five on Friday" is simply ideas for Valentine's Day!  I think sometimes we intermediate teachers forget with the hustle and bustle of the Common Core that our students are still kids!

Here are 5 ways to celebrate Valentine's Day without too big of a time investment!

1.  Find and print off a set of quotations that include the word "heart" or "friend".  Have a discussion about what it means to have "heart" or to be a true friend.  Display the quotations along with a heart shaped project.  Here is the one I did this year. . . we are hanging it on the door with our quotations intermingled with the projects.  This is SO easy!

Students simply trace (or hand draw!) a heart outline on a piece of white paper or tagboard...

Using squares of art tissue (the "bleeding" kind), they use a spray bottle to mist their page and "glue" the tissue on.  They keep remisting to keep the project wet and then let it dry WITH the tissue squares on it.

The next day, the squares are dry and come flying off leaving "tie dyed" hearts!  Once you cut them out, they are gorgeous--and every one of them unique!

Ta da!

2.  Spice up your reading in the week leading up to Valentine's Day!  I use a Valentine challenge (available in my TpT store, but you can make up your own!  Have students track their reading minutes or pages or whatever for the week and see how much reading the students can do.  Use the data for some math activities.  Some years I have the students make paper chains--one link for every 15 minutes or something like that.  At this age, students love a novel way to do an everyday task, so why not make it festive?  Here is what I am doing . . .

3.  Make a display of books you "LOVE" to read!  You can do this as a teacher to showcase/book talk books, or you can have the students each do a book review to display/share.  This is what I do . . . and the kids love it!  We write brief reports about books we "love" and then make a heart shaped project to display it--we use scrapbook papers and construction paper and I really let students take off and be as creative as they wish.  This year I got my entire team to do it, so we have almost 100 heart-shaped book reviews hanging in the hallway!  I like the literacy connection because I feel I can leave it up past February 14!

4.  Try to incorporate the holiday into math class!  Whether you use geometry when designing valentine holders, measurement to measure your paper links from idea #3, or simply write word problems with a Valentine theme.  We are deep into our fractions unit, but I am going to take a break for a few days next week to review big number multiplying and do an awesome activity I found over at Horizons blog.  Check these out if you are short on time!

5.  Put a little "sweet" into your writing instruction!  I am hoping I don't run out of time for this one. . . it's one of my favorites.  Buy a bag of conversation hearts (I like the big ones for this) and force your family to help you sort through them to rule out weird and/or inappropriate sayings.  Give a group a small bag of "good ones", and ask them to write a short story or a few sentences that include the messages on the hearts as dialogue.  Review how to punctuation dialogue and display a sample.  I did a quick paper model below--you decide if you want to teach about indenting for new speakers, etc.  You can also just have them do single sentences that don't connect to make a story (WAY easier).  I give the students 12 x 18 paper to do for their final project, but they plan it out in their notebooks.  They decorate with hearts and illustrations.  It's a fun way to incorporate the holiday into a lesson you probably need to do anyway!  

DISCLAIMER:  Yes, I know the second one should be indented. . . this is a MODEL just to show you what I am talking about.    

Anyhoo . . . I hope you see an idea or two that you might want to try over the next week to celebrate friends and the things we love!  I know I sure LOVE that you stopped by!  


  1. Sharing books they love is a great Valentine's Day activity! Since I didn't get to give out reading logs today (school was canceled) as I always do on Friday, this will be a perfect activity for my class this year. :)

  2. Thanks, ladies! I hope you have a great Valentine's week!