A fun Valentine’s celebration for kids

Some helpful ideas on how to make everyone enjoy February 14

he most over-rated “non-holiday” ever.  We’re sure that there is a reason why adults celebrate it by buying overpriced flowers and chocolates but for many kids, it can be stressful and embarrassing but since it seems that it’s here to stay, What To Do With The Kids has a few suggestions to make it fun for the kids.

First try not to emphasize the “I love you” or boyfriend/girlfriend aspect.  Young kids do not understand while the older kids may feel awkward and uncomfortable. Use the Valentine theme as an excuse for a party.  Something to do, just for fun.

Some schools have banned Valentine’s Day while others refer to it as “Red and White Day.” Many teachers who do celebrate it ask their young students to bring enough valentines for everyone in their class.  Although many parents may feel that there is a life lesson to be learned when a kid doesn’t receive a Valentine, we suggest that they get a pass for this one day. Parents can volunteer to bring in cookies, cupcakes or other treats with a red, white and pink theme or they can volunteer to help decorate the class room the night before as a surprise for the kids the next day.

The Valentines themselves can get expensive and if you wait too long, may not be available. Why not have the kids make their own as an afternoon activity?  All they need is some paper, a few crayons and a few suggestions on what they can do.  Look online for some design ideas. Skip the “I love you” and have them write “to my friend on Valentine’s Day” and make sure that everyone in their class gets a card by asking the teacher for a class list. What To Do With The Kids has a number of fun and colorful Valentine’s that can be downloaded quickly.

Some high schools use Valentine’s Day as an opportunity to raise funds. Students can order in advance a valentine gift to be delivered anonymously to a teacher or student.  The gift can be something simple as chocolates, a flower or even a chocolate flower. The deadline for orders would be a few days before so that there is enough time to buy the gifts.  They are then delivered to the students during the first class on Valentine’s Day.

Why not have a Valentine’s Party on the closest weekend? It can be just like a birthday party but without the cake and presents.  Have the kids come dressed in red, white or pink. Play a few games, make a valentine craft and serve food with a red, white or pink theme. Cookie cutters can make heart shaped sandwiches and food coloring can make almost any food look pink or red.

If your kid would like to give an adult such as a teacher a valentine’s gift, why not make it different? Have the kids make a card and make a small donation to the Heart Association in that person’s name.  After all, flowers will die and chocolate will just go to their hips but a donation to a charity helps many others.

After Valentine’s Day, don’t forget to save some of the valentines for use in other crafts.

For more Valentine’s party ideas, along with downloadable party invitations and Valentines, visit www.whattodowiththekids.com.