Tomorrow’s the big day! The day where sticky, heart-shaped treats and sweet, silly folded-up sentiments take over your classroom—and possibly your sanity. Valentine’s Day exchanges and celebrations usually make for a rowdy and unusual day in the classroom, but this doesn’t mean opportunities for building literacy are lost. In fact, there are plenty of ways to capitalize on the holiday to help your students strengthen their skills.

Here are a few ideas:

  1. Have students write a “love letter” to their favorite book or Read Naturally story. In the letter, they should explore how the book/story relates to their own life and why it is meaningful to them.
  2. Require students to use spelling words, challenging vocabulary words, or words from Read Naturally glossaries as they write valentines to friends and family.
  3. Have students use candy conversation hearts as starting points for thinking about and creating sentences. For example, how could a heart that says “Be Mine” be turned into a question or a declarative sentence?
  4. Explore the genre of poetry and teach students about simile, metaphor, personification, alliteration, and rhyme. You could even read a few Shakespearean Sonnets together—it’s never too early!
  5. Allow students to eat a treat and then think of five or more adjectives to describe it.
  6. Read and complete activities for Read Naturally’s “Changes in Chocolate” (sequenced level 6.0) story together to learn the history of this popular treat. 
  7. The Internet is full of Valentine’s Day-themed printables, worksheets, and projects, such as word finds and puzzles. Or, design your own incorporating the words your students are currently studying.
  8. And of course, read plenty of feel-good and Valentine’s Day-themed books aloud to your class, followed by meaningful discussion about the books' vocabulary and themes.

What do you have planned for tomorrow? Feel free to share some ideas on our Facebook page or in the comments for this blog post. We’ll be thinking of you and your students tomorrow and, as always, sending our warmest sentiments your way.