Phew! It seems like January and February are so busy! I like to discuss Dental Health Month with my students. We kick that off with our study of the Tooth Fairy & El Ráton Pérez. If you haven’t had a chance to read my most recent blog post about that unit – make sure you do!
Of course, we are trying to get to Valentine’s Day and Presidents Day and just wrapped up a unit all about MLK Jr. We also just finished our 100th Day of School celebration. Busy! Busy!
I wanted to share some tips for making your Valentine’s celebration run as smoothly as possible and tell you about a couple of new FREEBIES in my store and a new product that I’m super excited about! Make sure to read the entire post so you can see the FREE CVC, CCVC, & Rhyming game I’m sharing with you today!
First up is a parent letter. After many years in Kindergarten, I’ve decided that THIS is the best way to celebrate Valentine’s Day with your kids and continue on addressing standards as needed. I’ve included color or black & white options as well as a couple of options for you to use depending on whether or not your want your students to bring in a mailbox from home. You can grab the free letters by clicking on the resource below! (Also as a side note, if you enjoy using a FREEBIE from my store, please take just a minute leave feedback. It just takes a second but helps me know if I need to continue making FREEBIES for you!)
We made these lovely heart wands using pipe cleaners and beads that I had on hand. I’ve seen them done with pony beads too. I had smaller beads which just meant that the kids got some extra fine-motor practice. I know some teachers shape the hearts for their students before-hand. I demonstrate how to create one heart for the class then set an example at my station. I think this gives them a chance to really try one for themselves.
Those were so simple and fun! We also had tons of fun with our Valentine centers! I have a HUGE pack of Valentine centers that you can use all during the month of February to work on syllables, CVC words, rhyming, addition, greater than/less than, and so much more! You can click on the product cover below to find the resource on TPT.
Our favorite center from the pack is this Valentine Fairies one where students “shoot” their arrows at the correct heart target depending on how many syllables are in the word. The kids LOVE this one. The best thing about this resource is that EVERY center comes with extension activities that will keep early-finishers engaged giving you more time to meet with your small groups!
Students love this rhyming words center where they are putting the puzzles together if they rhyme. If they finish before the allotted time is up, they simply begin to write rhyming words on the printable included. Rhyming is such an important skill for kindergarten but it can be so challenging for my students, especially my ESL learners. I love having any new activities to work on this skill with them and the Valentine’s theme really kept them engaged.
This Tally Marks and Ten Frames Memory Game was a hit with my kids. They LOVED that they could play it by searching for 2 cards or 3 cards at a time. (They called it a set instead of simply a match.) The included printable really gave them the practice they needed writing out tally marks to correspond to a given number. They are always wanting to make a cross over the marks even when they haven’t reached the fifth tally yet!
Clip cards are always a great way to get some sneaky fine-motor practice in and the kids had so much fun with these Honey Bear Clip Cards. The counters really helped keep them motivated to solve the equations.
Next up we worked on Greater Than & Less Than concepts using the “chomping” gator. In TN we are required to submit a lengthy portfolio to demonstrate how much our students have learned each year and this is one of the standards that we will be addressing. I really enjoyed sitting on the floor with them while they worked on this little game so I could hear how they are progressing with this skill. It’s a tough one for 5 year-olds!
As I mentioned, this is just a few of the games you will find in the resource. There are actually 10 centers included. My kids loved the writing centers too. Click on any of the above photos to head over to TPT and see what all you can use in your classroom. I love that mine are now printed on cardstock (or laminated if you prefer) and ready for me to pull out EVERY year!
Have you ever made heart kites with your kids? So much fun and so simple to do using paper that you already have in your classroom. I just tell my students to make 2 chains and then connect them. I write several fact families on the board that they can write on the big heart or I let them challenge themselves with bigger numbers if they please. As you can see, some students really go above and beyond!
I love how they look in the hall. Anything with that 3-D aspect gets all the heart eyes from me! While we are discussing Valentine’s Day, can I show you the ridiculous Valentine boxes Dustin and I created for the girls? 🙂
I made the mistake of letting them scroll through Pinterest & pick anything they wanted and they chose Unicorn Sisters. We will never forget the time and effort we put into these! 🙂 We really got a kick out of them when we lined them up next to the others. They were way over the top but the girls were so proud of them and I guess that’s what matters.
Let me be clear that the girls did “help” by painting the horns, wings, ears, etc but if you are thinking of tackling these for your children, be sure you understand that you may end up doing the majority of the work!
I had ordered a heart sweatshirt & when the girls saw mine, they HAD to have a matching one with Mommy!
I always buy them big so we can get 2 uses out of them!
(They really loved that you could make a heart “hole” too!)
I promised you another FREEBIE and I’m telling you it was worth hanging on until the end for! I hope your kids LOVE this Valentine Candy Hunt game! My kids beg me to play it over and over again with them and I know yours will too!
Click on the cover above to head over to TPT to download it for free!
Happy Valentine’s Day friends!