Valentine-Themed Activities for Kindergarten
Candy hearts, Valentine cards, chocolate hearts, conversation hearts…those are just a few of the reasons why your little love bugs in kindergarten and first grade get SO excited about Valentine’s Day! Who doesn’t LOVE reading (and eating!) those little convo hearts?
The week of Valentine’s Day can be a bit frenetic in the kindergarten classroom, with sweet treats and lovey dovey talk, it all adds a bit of excitement to the room! So, to keep your sanity level high during that week, I’ve put together my most engaging and fun Valentine’s Day activities, fun ideas, and some lessons on my favorite Valentine’s Day books so that you, and your class, will have a truly Happy Valentine’s Day!
The Learning Potential of Valentine's Day
Yes, Valentine’s Day is exciting for kids, but let’s take a look at the potential for learning that this day actually holds, beyond just the candy hearts! Valentine’s Day is a chance for kids to learn about compassion, love, gratitude and inclusion for those around us. For example, how many Valentine’s Day cards does the custodian receive each year?
Let your class change all that with a set of cards made just to show appreciation and gratitude…for the secretary, the school resource officer, the guidance counselor, the custodian! They can also beautify the hallway for those passing by with Valentine’s Day art projects and paper hearts! Let’s teach our little learners that love letters on Valentine’s Day can, and should, be about all the different ways we can celebrate GIVING to someone, and showing gratitude — and not just about what we can get from others.
Yes, in many classrooms, Valentine’s Day can simply be about getting a sweet gift. But this day also brings with it the opportunity to teach lessons on what it means to be a good friend, to show kindness, and to include others, and not just on Valentine’s Day. We can use the fun aspect of Valentine’s Day as a great way to catapult our kids into learning academics, as well as learning how to be thoughtful and kind to others!
Valentine's Day Reading & Listening
Need an engaging and academically rigorous activity for your literacy centers? These Listening Center Response activities are an easy way to add a Valentine’s Day twist to your usual literacy skills centers. This set was created for an entertaining book that kindergarten students adore, called A Crankenstein Valentine.
Kids love the book and the center! And don’t worry – it’s easy peasy to set up this fun listening activity! If you don’t have a copy of the book or have the audio version, just borrow one from the media center and record yourself reading it aloud. (It’s a great story and Crankentein is a funny character that kids love!) Then, just have the response sheets ready for the kids, and there ya go!
Though it was designed for centers, this fun listening activity also works great for whole or small groups, as a sub plan activity, and it’s also perfect for parent volunteers who pop in to help!
Here is the link to the Valentine’s Day Listening Center activity:
Valentine’s Day Literacy Activities
We already know that Valentine’s Day is so exciting for young children! This makes it a perfect time to harness their enthusiasm and focus it on engaging and fun handwriting and literacy activities like these three favorites. These 3 sets are so much fun for kids (and low-prep for teachers!). The Valentine’s Day literacy activities below, are great for learning (and practicing!) the essential ELA skills that kids really need to learn, and over-learn!
Valentine's Day Read, Trace, Glue and Draw
This set gives kids a fun way to be in constant motion as they learn to revel in the fun of Valentine’s Day themes. Engagement is over the top as they sharpen their fine motor skills too! In this set of hands-on activities, their individual skill level makes it easy to differentiate and know if they should write, read, trace, glue or draw, as they delight in the Valentine fun!
Never underestimate the value of handwriting practice! Remember that the research on handwriting and fluency says that as students learn to write the letters more fluently, they are also able to name them, and start basic reading, with more fluency as well.
Simple Sentence Handwriting
The Valentine’s Day Simple Sentence Handwriting set is a great way to have your kinders practice letter, word, and sentence writing. Students practice writing letters, words, and simple sentences correctly and precisely in addition to placing the words in the correct sentence order. The themes in this Valentine’s Day literacy activity will fill them with joy joy joy!
It’s so important for kindergarten students to learn, and over-learn skills like letter, word, and sentence writing, even though they seem like just a simple activity. This set makes it easy to hold their attention while practicing these essential standards-based ELA skills.
Writing practice enables our students to gain fluency—and fluency in writing leads to gains in reading. Brain research supports the need for detailed instruction in handwriting and the path of motion. Therefore, improvement in student writing leads to improvement in a student’s reading as well!
I really love this set because the sentences are 70% decodable! Check it out here:
Valentine's Day Handwriting and Sentence Practice
This set has 2 levels of handwriting and sentence practice that makes differentiation easy! Another great Valentine’s Day printable for practicing sentence writing while focusing on the correct path of motion.
Each of these sets of handwriting printables is available in year-long bundles. I will link those here for you to check out:
Valentine’s Day Sight Word Games
You can also take that Valentine’s Day excitement that your kids are feeling and channel it into this set of Roll, Say, Keep Sight word games, with the Valentine’s Day theme. The kids have so much fun with Cupid, they don’t realize how much they are learning! This set of heart-themed printables is fully customizable and editable. That means your students can practice the precise letter identification and sight words they need to work on, in engaging ways, without you spending hours prepping your centers.
You can use the 64 pre-loaded words, or edit the set to use any words your class is working on, and customize the set in many different ways! This set is great as a small group warm-up or a literacy center activity. The familiar Sight Word Game format is a big hit with kindergarten and first grade students.
Check it out here:
Simply put, this game is Valentine’s Day fun combined with sight words and spelling, and kids love it! The game has 70 high-frequency words, a playing board, and a response sheet. You can also add your own words as this file is easily editable. It’s fast and easy to add your own sight words or spelling words, specifically targeted for your student’s needs.
There are two levels of play. Students can just read the words, or practice writing the words. Sight word fluency becomes easy for kids as they have a blast learning with this set. The fact that it’s editable means you can easily differentiate to suit the needs of all your students.
This Sight Word Game for Valentine’s Day can be found here:
Kids Love Cupid & Pocket Charts!
Pocket charts are a winner in the kindergarten classroom! Kids love the visual and movement aspects of learning with a pocket chart! Here’s a simple yet effective Valentine’s Day ELA activity made just for pocket charts.
With this activity, the learning focus is on simple sentence building. The set works great as both a center and whole group lesson on sentence writing. It gives kids a fun opportunity to practice putting sentences together, correctly. There’s just something about the appeal of working with a pocket chart that really holds the attention of your kindergarten students!
In the set, there are also two emergent readers that are included. Both provide a predictable and simple sentence text for your kindergarten students. Each book focuses on a sight word that students will trace and write. One reader has a Valentine theme and the other is about another February topic, President’s Day.
This interactive pocket chart center for Valentine’s Day can be found here:
Valentine’s Day Poetry Shared Reading
Is using poems for Shared Reading activities a thing? Yes, and it’s a GREAT thing that kids love too!
In this shared reading poetry set, which includes a Valentine’s Day theme, each poem of the week is perfect for you to use with your kindergarten or first grade students. These poems are set to a familiar tune so that your students can sing along while they have a great time improving fluency and learning about rhyming. It’s engaging and easy fluency practice that’s also toe-tappin’ fun!
The daily shared reading poems in the set are themed for February topics and include Monster Love (lots of giggles!), money and coins, a loose tooth, and even Groundhogs Day! Your students will love these poetry-set-to-music lessons! You will love how easy they are to use.
These poems are given in a variety of formats, so you can select the version that works best for your students’ levels. They can be implemented as a pocket chart activity, or the poem can be displayed under the document camera, or Google Classroom, or Seesaw. Rhyming, rhythm, and song are all a part of these kid-friendly poems and are a fun way to improve their reading and fluency skills!
You can find the February poems here:
Decodable Valentine’s Day Books
This set of decodable books is one of my favorite Valentine’s Day activities because kids get to enjoy everything related to Valentine’s Day, while growing their confidence and skills in reading at the same time!
In this printable Valentines book, students can color the pictures and then cut and glue the pictures to match each page. Decodable books make a great activity for any time throughout your day!
Decodable books are an essential part of the Science of Reading approach to instruction. This set of books was written with the best elements of the Science of Reading in mind.
This decodable reader and 4 other titles that are perfect for February can be found here:
Math Activities for Valentine’s Day
When you’re looking to grow those essential math skills and you need something engaging and fun, I have two favorite Valentine’s Day Math Center sets selected for you. The first one is a math center set that can be edited to swap out the themes. This makes it seem as though the kids see it as a brand new game each time!
The next set is focused on developing math fluency for numbers 1 to 10. Both addition and subtraction skills are practiced in this set with a Valentine’s Day theme. The kids absolutely love it and it’s editable so you can easily add and change it to your own preferred equations. Even better, it’s standards-based skills practice, and we can never have enough of that!
Valentine’s Day Math and Literacy Centers
Those two old besties, Math and Literacy, are reunited again, and just in time for a fabulous Valentine’s Day set! These kindergarten math and literacy centers are engaging for kids and EASY PREP for teachers! Plus, each activity is standards-aligned.
These literacy and math centers are perfect for February, with themes based on Groundhog Day, Valentine’s Day, Dental Health, and President’s Day. Each kindergarten center has a recording sheet that can be used for tracking student progress during these independent activities. Imagine having progress monitoring done and on the recording sheets and completed so easily!
These purposely predictable kindergarten centers are ideal for any classroom because the activities don’t have to be retaught month-after-month. The students can apply their new knowledge to the same activities, but with different themes, each month. Best of all, the students are able to complete the work on their math and literacy skills independently! This allows you time to meet with your small groups when you need to!
Check out the Valentine’s Day Math and Literacy Center Activities set here:
Valentine's Day Read Aloud Lesson Plans
We have a few reading comprehension units that use some of my favorite Valentine’s Day read-alouds. Be sure to check them out here:
Valentine's Day Free File
Snag this bingo activity that is perfect for practicing CVC words in a small group or play some table games at your Valentine’s Day class party!