As we get closer to Valentine’s Day hearts begin popping up everywhere and the world seems to become covered in red, pink, and purple. There are so many fun valentine’s day activities for kids, and there are tons of different approaches you can take to the holiday. Here are some fabulous resources for planning your preschool Valentine’s Day theme. Most of these activities are designed for kids ages 3 through 5, but many can be modified for younger and older kids as well.
WHY IT’S FUN
With all the excitement of candy and sharing special gifts, the anticipation for Valentine’s day quickly builds. Kids will enjoy making homemade valentines for friends. And candy is definitely motivating for little ones. Many of the Valentine candies make terrific manipulatives for learning games or science experiments, leading to many opportunities for play and learning.
WHEN TO TEACH A VALENTINE’S DAY THEME
Since Valentine’s Day is always on February 14, you can decide how far in advance you want to spread out your activities.
Some people prefer to spread them over the first two weeks of February with a culminating activity on Valentine’s Day.
Others like to save everything for one Valentine’s celebration on February 14.
We tend to spread our activities out over at least a week so we can fully explore the concepts and have time for different crafts and pretend play activities.
Choose the approach that best meets your kids’ interest level and the requirements of your program if necessary.
TEACHING TIPS & MAJOR CONCEPTS KIDS WILL LEARN
If you’re planning a preschool Valentine’s Day theme, there are many possibilities for incorporating meaningful early learning skills.
These are just some of the concepts kids can learn about during a Valentine’s Day theme:
- the history of Valentine’s Day
- ways to show love or appreciation all year long
- how to be a good friend
- how to include others
- how the human heart works
You can also use heart or cupid manipulatives for many learning activities to teach math and literacy concepts.
ITEMS TO COLLECT AND REQUEST IN ADVANCE
If you get parents, friends, and family involved you can enrich the experience kids have during your preschool Valentine’s Day theme.
Collect or ask people to help you collect:
- All things HEARTS-paper cutouts, cookie cutters, stickers, paper punches, washi tape, ribbon, gel clings, etc
- Items for a pretend play bakery or chocolate shop (empty chocolate boxes, cake or cupcake boxes)
- Items for a pretend play flower shop (flowers, plastic vases or tissue paper for wrapping bouquets)
- Items for a pretend play gift or jewelry shop (small boxes, costume jewelry)
You might even invite special guests (or go visit if you can) to come and share about fields and hobbies related to Valentine’s Day. You could include:
- A florist
- A chocolatier or candy maker
- Bakery chef
- A musician to discuss and play different melodies for popular love songs
- Greeting card writer
PRINTABLE VALENTINE’S DAY THEME LESSON PLANS
Save time and get right to the playful learning with our printable lesson plan sets. Each set includes over 30 playful learning activities related to the theme, and we’ve provided different versions for home preschool families and classroom teachers so all activities are geared directly toward your needs.
VALENTINE’S DAY THEME
This VALENTINE’S DAY lesson plan set also includes:
1) Chocolate Taste Test (in color and b/w)
2) Heart Counting Mats 1-20
3) “I Love” Emergent Reader (2 versions)
4) Valentine Upper and Lowercase ABC Match (in color and b/w)
5) Valentine’s Day Dice Game (in color and b/w)
6) Valentine’s Day Letter Puzzles (in color and b/w)
7) 0-35 Valentine’s Day Number Cards (in color and b/w)
8) Valentine Roll and Graph Math Game (in color and b/w)
9) Printable Valentine Writing Papers
Also available on Teachers Pay Teachers.
The HEART THEME set currently includes active hands-on learning ideas and the following printables:
1) Uppercase and Lowercase Alphabet Heart Matching Puzzles
2) Numeral and Set Number Heart Matching Puzzles
3) Heart Counting Mats
4) Heart Ten Frame Cards
5) Number, Word, and Ten Frame Heart Cards
6) Sorting Hearts for color and size sorting
7) Sight Word Heart Cards (Preprimer Dolch List)
8) Counting Sets Roll and Color Game
9) Heart Dice Game
GET YOUR HEART THEME LESSON PLANS
Also available on Teachers Pay Teachers.
MORE LESSON PLANS COMING SOON
Friendship-Coming in January 2018
RELATED VALENTINE’S DAY PRINTABLES
In our full Roll and Color Heart Math set there are 16 roll and color math games for early math skills from preschool through first grade.
INDIVIDUAL VALENTINE’S DAY ACTIVITY IDEAS ON FANTASTIC FUN AND LEARNING
Here on Fantastic Fun and Learning we’ve shared the following ideas to go along with a preschool Valentine’s Day theme.
This cupid’s arrow Valentine’s Day snack is sure to be a healthy hit!
Make some kid-made valentines with this “You’re Berry Sweet” themed idea.
Use flower petals as paintbrushes to paint beautiful process art.
Using only a few simple materials, you can create a three-dimensional heart as a Valentine’s Day craft.
Decorate wrapping paper, create patterns, or just create some process art with this DIY heart stamping craft.
Set out an open-ended Valentine’s Day arts and crafts station for your little ones to create whatever their hearts desire!
Create a heart shaped sun catcher to admire this Valentine’s Day using absolutely no contact paper.
Enjoy some sensory exploration and fun with this Valentine’s Day themed water play sensory bin.
Have fun making these adorable play dough love bugs in a hands-on way. Just grab some play dough and loose parts.
Involve the senses this Valentine’s Day as you explore this Valentine’s Day sensory bin. Children can practice sorting, counting, transferring and pouring, and even work on language development.
Practice name recognition, counting, and one-to-one correspondence with this chocolate kisses name game.
Using candy conversation hearts, explore the science behind dissolving matter with this exciting and colorful conversation heart science experiment!
Little chocolate lovers will have so much fun making their own play dough valentine chocolates for pretend play and math activities.
Get ready to explore science with this painted salt heart sculpture activity.
MORE ACTIVITIES FROM CREATIVE EDUCATORS
Check out some of these healthy snacks for Valentine’s Day for your class party, gathering, or school snack.
We’ve gathered some of the cutest Valentine’s Day crafts you can find to celebrate the holiday!
Have you been bitten by the love bug? Check out these fun love bug art and craft activities this Valentine’s Day!
INFORMATIONAL YOUTUBE VIDEOS
Learn some interesting facts about Valentine’s Day.
Clap and sing along to this Valentine’s Day twist on B-I-N-G-O.
Kids will love singing along to the classic favorite, Skidamarink.
If You Love Me and You Know It is a great song for little ones to learn to sing to their family members.
Get kids thinking and talking about things they love with this fun beat.
Practice color recognition with Valentines, Valentines, What Color Do You See?
Kids have fun using different voices and acting out this finger play.
OTHER ONLINE RESOURCES
Finger plays and action rhymes are a great addition to your preschool themes. The following websites have lengthy lists of Valentine’s songs. Choose one or two favorites to sing with your kids.
If you’d like to supplement your hands-on learning with some online games you might try:
Primary Games has a wide variety of online Valentine’s Day games.
Match chocolates to chocolate boxes with the Valentine’s Day puzzle game from ABCya.
Find Valentine’s Day games, episodes and printable activities over on PBS Kids.
FAVORITE VALENTINE’S DAY BOOKS
There are a ton of wonderful books to read for your Valentine’s Day theme. Below are some of our favorite picture books for a Valentine’s Day theme.
Whenever we can we try to include some nonfiction books in our early learning themes. These books will help your little ones learn more about Valentine’s Day and some of the items we associate with the holiday…like chocolate!
MORE VALENTINE’S DAY BOOKS
Valentine’s Day can also be a wonderful time to talk with kids about friendship. Here are some picture books about friendship to help guide your discussions.
OTHER PROPS AND TEACHING TOOLS
Reinforce learning with these hands-on materials for your Valentine’s Day theme. They can be used for sensory bins, crafts, and learning activities.
Grab these free printables to add to your Valentine’s Day activities.
These Valentine’s Day printable number cards will help your little mathematician view numbers three different ways: number form, word form, and in a ten-frame.
Brush up on adding doubles with this free Valentine’s Day math printable.
Check out these Valentine’s Day dice games with free printables.
Exercise those fine motor muscles as you create valentine chocolates. Then use these free printable heart counting mats to work on number recognition and counting sets.
This sorting candy kisses math activity is perfect for toddlers and preschoolers to practice basic math skills. A sorting by color printable is included!
Extend your fun and learning with candy kisses by graphing the chocolates by color. The free printable will help visualize the differences in quantity.
Practice combining sets and early addition with this hands-on simple addition candy kisses math activity and free printable.
Have fun measuring perimeter with this hands-on candy kisses math activity with printable.
Continue to explore nonstandard measurement as you measure length with candy kisses. Free printable included!
Practice counting sets and matching corresponding numbers with this printable Valentine’s Day themed roll and color math game.
Looking for a candy-free option for a valentine card? Check out this printable Valentine’s Day valentine that goes along with a cute bird theme: “You’re So Tweet!”
Here’s another candy-free valentine option that you can print out: “I’m Fairy Glad We’re Friends!”
Work on sight word recognition and building in a hands-on way with this play dough sight word activity. 40 pre-primer sight words are included as a printable!
POSSIBLE FIELD TRIPS OR ADVENTURES
For some added fun during your Valentine’s Day activities head to one of these locations:
- A chocolate factory
- A bakery
- A post office
- A florist shop
As you wrap up your preschool Valentine’s Day theme take note of what the kids were most interested in throughout the theme. Continue on by investigating one of those concepts more in depth. You might also consider beginning to explore some spring themes as spring gets closer. Below are some possible suggestions. Themes we have printable lesson plans for include links after them.