The season of love is here and although many adults think Valentine’s Day is a Hallmark holiday it is also a great time to show love and appreciation to others. Children can take the time to make crafts and cards for friends to tell them why they appreciate their friendship. Pick one of these five Valentine’s Day activities for kids. There is a craft that fits every child’s interest whether they like simple crafts, getting messy, or even prefer to be outdoors.
1. Can Love Grow on Trees?
For all those nature lovers, head outside and collect some fallen branches. This is a great kid activity in CT, MA, or anywhere in New England to encourage some outdoor time in the winter.
Once inside, break the sticks to the appropriate height as if they were flowers sticking out of a vase. Place them in a vase; for younger children I suggest using a plastic container rather than a glass vase. Have string and different size and colored hearts prepared; we used foam paper for our hearts. Older children can help cut out the hearts with you. Using a hole punch make a small hole at the top of each heart. Practicing fine motor and eye–hand coordination, feed the string through the hole and tie it. Now hang it from a branch. This is a beautiful bouquet for Mom or a teacher that they will be able to enjoy much longer than fresh flowers.
2. My Love For You Keeps Growing
Trace your child’s forearm and hand on a brown piece of paper. If they are old enough, let them cut it out. Glue it on a pieces of paper with enough room above the handprint to decorate. Now children can use paint or a washable ink pad to make their fingerprints as all the budding pink and red flowers on the tree. Older children can get more fancy and put two fingerprints together to create a small heart.
3. A Love Tree Card
Fold a piece of white cardstock in half, making a card. Stand it vertically and either trace or use brown paint to make the print of your child’s forearm and hand. This will be the trunk and branches of a tree on the front of the card. If your child is older and needs more space for their handprint, make it the inside of a horizontal card. It will open up to a beautifully filled love tree.
Next, get a paper towel tube and fold it so one side comes to a point and then opposite of that folds in creating the two rounded tops of heart. See the example to the right. Now, using the cardboard tube in the shape of a heart, have your child dip it in paint and then make heart shaped leaves to fill their love tree Valentine’s Day activity.
4. Building Love from the Ground Up
Ahead of time cut out different lengths and widths of brown paper strips; these will be branches. Then cut out multiple hearts for the leaves on the trees; they can be different shapes and colors.
Read Winter, by Leo Lionni and point out the unique illustrations; the branches look like scrap paper glued together. This will help your child see the abstract idea of ‘building a tree.’ Take a wide piece of brown paper for the truck of the tree and have your child glue branches coming off in all directions. Afterward offer the hearts and explain they will be the leaves for the Valentine’s Day activity.
5. I Love You to Pieces Heart Tree
On cardstock or a piece of cardboard cut out the shape of a heart, at least six inches wide. You will also need a trunk of a tree to go underneath the heart, cut it out separately from the cardboard. First offer your child the cut out heart, ripped pieces of tissue paper, and glue. Crumple up pieces of tissue paper and glue them on the heart. Together fill the whole heart with beautiful colors. Glue the heart at the top of the previously cut tree trunk. Hang it on your door so all can see and enjoy your child’s Valentine’s Day activity.
Enjoy making one or all of these crafts. If you are looking for more Valentine’s Day activities to share love this February, check out these festive sensory bin ideas or plan a Valentine’s Scavenger Hunt for your kids! Stay busy throughout the winter with this long list of fun kid activities in CT or check out these exciting Boston destinations over February school break.
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About The Author
Kelsey Dickson has over 15 years of experience working with children as a nanny, preschool teacher, and now a mother. She has her degree in Early Childhood Education and is a Certified Potty Training Expert. At Boston Baby Nurse & Nanny she is the eLearning and Social Media Manager. Check out our online childcare classes, such as Baby Sign Language and Sleep Coaching 101! In her free time she enjoys gardening with her children, going for walks with her family, and discovering local wineries in New England.