Valentine's Day is coming up in just over a week! If you are a teacher, are you celebrating it in your classroom? The holiday isn't as popular here in Tanzania, but I still like to celebrate it in small ways in my classroom! For me, I enjoy teaching my students about loving each other, and how we can show God's love through kindness. Today, I'll share a bit about what Valentine's Day looks like in my classroom!
One thing I love doing with all students (you could even simplify it for Kinders), is making a heart map! You can totally do this in the beginning of the year, but Valentine's Day is a great time to do it too! Depending on the age of your students, you give them a blank heart, or one with some lines drawn to make separate areas. Then, they get to map out what their heart looks like - what they love! God, family, friends, soccer, French Fries, TV, school, etc. Depending on their age, they can draw pictures, draw pictures and words, or just words. It makes for a fun way to share more about what they love! (It also makes a cute bulletin board!)
I actually have a TpT product that gives you everything you need to do the heart map activity, and incorporates expository writing for the middle-to-upper elementary students! It would be a great to put in your Valentine's Day lesson plans and keep things learning-focused too! Click the picture to see more!
Next, I have used, and will use, Valentine's-themed centers during the week of V-Day in my classroom. Last year, my firsties were working on measurement, so we used this Valentine Measurement Math Center.
This year, I will be using these February Math and Literacy Centers by Mrs. Ricca's Kindergarten.
Also, as a song to transition for centers, and to learn as we talk about loving each other how Jesus does, "Love One Another" by Little Praise Party & Yancy. (Side note: my students LOVE another song by them called Hosanna Rock!) Obviously, this one is for those who teach in Christian schools (or Sunday schools!), like me.
And, finally, the FREEBIE!! Last year, I found the AMAZING idea from Fluttering through First Grade to make Compli-mats with my students! A Compli-mat is a piece of paper, with a heart, where students can COMPLIMENT each other! Spread some love in your classroom by printing out my freebie, preferably on pink or red paper (but I did white), and complimenting away!
I started with a mini-lesson on what a compliment is, how to give a good compliment, etc. with my firsties. Then, I went around and wrote a compliment on each of their Compli-mats to model. Next, they complimented themselves on their mats. Finally, we did a "scoot" rotation so each student could write a compliment for each of their classmates!
At the end, the students got to decorate their own Compli-mats with markers and crayons and then take them home to save and read! I'll be doing this again this year with my ESL classes (as it's a little too much for my Kinders to handle). I love this idea, and it worked really well for me!
Claim your freebie by clicking here or on the image above!!
What do you do in your classroom to celebrate Valentine's Day?! Let me know in the comments below!
Much Love, Allie