Winter break has perfect timing this year, right after Valentine’s Day and the 100th Day of School this Thursday and Friday! It’s a busy, busy week and I will definitely need the rest next week.
But, until then, we are having lots of fun in our Valentine stations.
Station 1: Our Favorites Carousel
One of my favorite Valentine’s Day writing activities is this ‘carousel’ we do about things we love!
I make 5 charts and place them around the room. Kids move from chart to chart, drawing and labeling one thing on each chart. My 5 categories are:
- PEOPLE we love
- ANIMALS we love
- THINGS we love
- PLACES we love
- FOODS we love
- Brainstorm a few ideas for each category before starting
- Draw an example on each so they remember the categories
- Group kids heterogeneously
- Time each station and rotate after about 5 minutes
- Remind kids to leave space for others 🙂
This carousel activity is great for many concepts- 5 senses, ways to make different numbers, word families, etc!
Station 2: Labeling Poster
This Valentine’s Day station has a poster with clipart and pre-labeled post-it notes. I stack these out of order and kids figure out where they go.
Station 3: Labeling for Emergent Writers
These labeling sheets are perfect for kindergarten and first grade! My students just love them because they are free to label whatever they want.
With built-in differentiation, they are perfect for all writing levels. Beginners can stick to labeling, while more advanced writers can add a sentence.
They are part of my Labeling for Emergent Writers pack, which is 40% off for a little while longer.
To read more about how I use these, plus more tips on helping emergent writers, read this blog post: Tips for Emergent Writers
Station 4: Mystery Mailbox
I have to say, this station has been a bigger hit with my students than I expected! I simply bought a Valentine mailbox from the dollar store and filled a basket of mini-objects. Kids hide an object in the mailbox, then give clues to their peers.
It’s such a great way to develop language, especially for my English Language Learners.
- Practice a few whole-group, discussing what makes a good clue
- Give prompts: It is a food/animal/game, etc., It lives in —.
- Tell student guessers they can ask questions, such as, “Does it move?” Is it something you eat?” etc.
- Any objects will do, so if you don’t have an alphabet mini-set, go around your classroom gathering things: marker, eraser, cube, pattern block, crayon, paper clip, etc.
I love this center so much, I will have to modify it for every month: Mystery Leprechaun’s Hat, Mystery Easter Bunny Basket
Station 5: Math Mats
I made some simple math mats for practicing addition. I used double-dice and mini-erasers. Kids rolled and placed the numbers from both dice onto the Valentine carts, then completed the sentence.
Station 6: CVC Hearts
Oh, I love this one! I found these little hearts at Walmart and knew it would make a great activity. My good friend Jennifer from CrayonsandCutiesinKindergarten suggested a CVC guessing game and I loved that idea! So, I printed out some CVC clipart and wrote the words on the outside. Kids read the word and check the picture to confirm.
- Place clear tape over the words so they don’t get erased.
- Glue the pictures to the inside if you want them to stay (I found out kids love to take them out and mix them up).
- OR, let them take the pictures out and make a game of matching them back!
Station 7: Spin-a-Word
Do your students love working on your interactive whiteboard? My students just love coming up to the ENO board! So, I made a morning station out of it. I simply display this Spin-a-Word mat on the ENO board and kids use the spinner (another Dollar Tree gem) to build words.
This mat is included in your freebie (link below), but I also have a pack of Spin-a-Word mats you can display on your ENO board for whole-group work and also use for centers. They have recording sheets, too!
Station 8: Valentine’s Day B
Here is a simple bag craft for all their V
Station 9: Valentine
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If you like these ideas, I’d love for you to share or pin this post! And, of course, feel free to share your ideas in the comments below.
Have a Happy Valentine’s Day!