Activities & Lessons
Valentine’s Day is one of the most exciting holidays for young students. Why? The crafts and candy, of course!
Valentine's Day Ideas for School
An annual card exchange is always a blast—and can be a good way for students to practice writing—but students (and teachers!) like variety too. If you’re looking ways to celebrate on February 14, here are seven Valentine's Day classroom activities for elementary school students. (Also, check out these Valentine's Day activities for middle and high school students.)
1. Write notes of kindness.
Valentine’s Day is about love and being kind to one another. Put all your students’ names in a jar and have each person pick one. Ask everyone to write a few words saying what they like about that person and exchange notes. Then you can display the notes in your classroom! You can even turn this into a larger Valentine’s Day activity for students where children in the early grades practice writing in complete sentences and older learners practice structuring paragraphs.
2. Have a door-decorating contest.
Invite teachers and students to decorate their classroom doors. After the decorating, students can observe their peers’ creations and choose a winner based on both content and aesthetics. Kids will love the opportunity to be creative and express themselves. For example, you can have students write what they love about learning or love about their classmates on paper hearts.
3. Read some Valentine’s Day books.
Reading a Valentine’s Day picture book may seem simple, but this is the perfect holiday to celebrate a love of reading. A few of our favorite books for Valentine’s Day include:
- Happy Valentine’s Day, Curious George! by N. Di Angelo (Grades Pre-K–3)
- Mouse and Mole: Secret Valentine by Wong Herbert Yee (Grades 1–4)
- I Like You by Sandol Stoddard Warburg and illustrated by Jacqueline Chwast (Grades Pre-K–3)
- The Valentine Bears by Eve Bunting and Jan Brett (Grades Pre-K–3)
- Ollie's Valentine by Olivier Dunrea (Grades Pre-K–K)
- We Go Together!: A Curious Selection of Affectionate Verse by Calef Brown (Grades Pre-K–3)
4. Make a heart collage.
Have students gather materials with different textures and cut or form hearts of various sizes. They can glue them to paper for an easy artistic creation. This can be a fun independent art activity, or you can divide students into groups so they can practice being creative in collaboration with their peers.
5. Craft up some Valen-slime!
Not into the ooey-gooey romantic side of Valentine’s Day? Make it gooey in a different way with some Valen-slime! Directions here. Have students participate in different parts of the slime creation, calling them up one by one or in small groups to contribute.
6. Set up a candy heart estimation jar.
Fill a jar with conversation hearts (or another small candy, like M&Ms) and give everyone a chance to guess how many there are. Whoever’s closest wins a portion of the jar (or the whole thing, if you’re feeling generous!). You can also turn this into a math lesson for older students by providing tips about what strategies they could have used to come up with an estimate.
7. Do a crystal heart science experiment.
Grow your own crystals around pipe cleaner hearts using simple materials. Your students will be amazed at the process and transformation! Full instructions here.
We hope you find these Valentine's Day activities for school helpful. Remember to spread love and kindness in the classroom every day—not just on February 14!
Have More Valentine's Day Classroom Ideas?
Have any Valentine's Day ideas for school that we missed? Share your favorites with us on Twitter (@LeadAndLearn) or email us at Shaped@hmhco.com.
Find more lesson plans and classroom resources on Shaped.
This blog post, originally published in February 2019, has been updated for 2021.