Bloomsbury Early Years - Valentine's Day
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The Little Book of Special Days

Activity Type:

Cooking

Ages:

3-5 years

Topics:

Spring

Type of Content:

Activity

Related Activities

Valentine's Day

An idea for a special day

by Elaine Massey and Sam Goodman

Why not make Valentine’s Day a ‘special friends day’ in your setting? Let the children make cards, heart-shaped snacks and decorations and take the time to let each other know that they are good friends and to share the things they like about each other.

What you need

  • coloured paper and white card

  • glue and scissors

  • heart-shaped stickers

  • heart-shaped sponge (for printing)

  • small jars

  • plain cotton material

  • fabric pens/paint

  • elastic bands/ribbon

  • bread

  • condensed milk

  • a new paintbrush

  • heart-shaped dough/biscuit cutters

Ready for more?

Heart caterpillar:

  1. Depending on the age of your children, you may need to prepare lots of cut out hearts in advance for this activity Alternatively you could supply a heart-shaped template for the child to draw around and then cut out. Use one or more colours for the hearts.

  2. Once cut out, start sticking the hearts slightly on top of each other as though you are stacking them. Make your heart caterpillar as long or as short as you want.

  3. Finally add the last heart, the opposite way up, this will be the caterpillar’s head. Draw a face on this heart. You may also want to add antennae which have tiny little hearts on the end. Use very thin strips of paper or pipe cleaners.

Valentine candy jars:

  1. Prior to this special day send out a ‘wanted’ note to parents to see if you can collect enough small baby food jars or similar sized containers so that each child has one to decorate.

  2. Let each child decorate a jar with stickers, etc. Also get each child to decorate on a circular piece of plain cotton material which is going to cover the top of the jar.

  3. Fill each jar with tiny sweets. Use the cotton circles to cover the jars and attach with an elastic band or ribbon.

  4. At the end of your special Valentine’s day, each child gives another child a jar. The point is to make sure everyone takes a gift home.

Valentine snacks:

  1. Mix together approximately 10ml of condensed milk and gradually add red food colouring. Add as much colouring as you wish until you have the shade of red you want.

  2. Then using a new paintbrush paint a heart on a piece of bread and toast it!

  3. Alternatively, use a heart shaped dough/biscuit cutter to cut out scone or biscuit mixture.

  4. Have all your food at snack time heart-shaped or red!

Ready for more?

  • Turn heart caterpillars into butterflies: make four more rows of stacked hearts and attach them to the body of the heart caterpillar at an angle (two on each side of its body) and you have a butterfly! Alternatively you could just add two large hearts (one on each side) to the caterpillar body.

  • Don’t forget the Valentine’s cards! Each child designs one of their own and posts it in your setting’s postbox. At the end of the session hand them out – one to each child, but not the one they made. Talk about friendship and caring.

  • Have a Valentine’s dance! Let the children use red ribbons and scarves to make up a dance for their friends!

Look, listen and note

  • Anticipating key events

  • Handle equipment and tools effectively including pencils for writing

  • Talk about feelings and behaviour

  • Work cooperatively and take turns with others

  • Communities & traditions

  • Design & technology

Where to go next: Pancake Day
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