Valentine's Day is not just a day for your child to show friends and family how much they mean to them — the holiday also provides your little one with wonderful opportunities for authentic reading and writing. Here are three simple and engaging ways to make holiday fun with your child while also building literacy skills.
1. Set Up a Card-Making Station
Encourage your child to easily create — and write — cards for family and friends by establishing this simple, special space. Begin by gathering card-making supplies and arranging them neatly on a table or desk. You could include:
- Colored cardstock pieces, folded to form cards
- Heart stickers
- Sheets of Valentine’s gift wrap or scrapbooking paper
- Scraps of colored paper
- Felt tip marker pens
- Glue stick
For early writers, add some word card prompts including words like "To," "Love," "From" and "Happy Valentine’s Day," writing each word clearly on an index card.
You might also like to include a checklist of names to help your child spell the names of family members or classmates and assist in future name recognition.
2. Write Acrostic Poems
Acrostic poems are one of the simplest forms of poetry, most commonly made by using the initial letters of a word as prompts for words or short sentences that describe the word being used. Encourage your child to have a go at creating an acrostic poem with a friend’s name your child is giving their Valentine’s card to. Here’s an example:
3. Read Your Child’s Most Loved Book
Any day is a great day to read aloud with your child — whatever their age. Reading together is the perfect opportunity to spend quality time with your little one, while building their literacy skills at the same time.
Add a Valentine’s twist by asking your child to choose the book (or books!) for you to read. Or, choose one of the love-filled titles in the shopping list below to enjoy together and share the sweetness of the holiday.
For instance, How Do Dinosaurs Say I Love You? is a beautiful reminder of the everlasting love between family members — even when our littlest dinosaurs are testing our patience!
Meanwhile, in The Littlest Valentine by Brandi Dougherty a small girl finds a special friend just in time for Valentine’s Day, reminding us all that “everyone needs a little love on Valentine’s Day.”
Older readers will delight in Geronimo Stilton #80: Have a Heart, Geronimo, where Geronimo becomes an assistant at his friend's new dating agency. When someone tries to sabotage the matches, it's up to him to find out who.
Shop Valentine's Day children's books below! You can find all books and activities at The Scholastic Store.