6 Best Valentine’s Day Books for Children Ages 1-10 & Exciting Activities
Valentine’s Day in the U. S. is on February 14th. This is a fun holiday for everyone, including children. It is a reminder to share love and respect for each other. I have selected 6 kids’ books appropriate from ages 1-10 years-old. There are corresponding activities that teachers and parents can do together with their children. At the end of this post, there is a wonderful activity that I used to do with my niece and nephew when they were they were younger. I also did this with gingerbread men with my kindergarten classes. They all loved it! I have provided a printable for the grand finale of this activity. Enjoy! I want to wish you a Happy Valentine’s Day!
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1) I love You Spot! By: Eric Hill Ages: 1-3 Grades: Preschool Board Book
I Love You Spot by Eric Hill is a delightful heart-shaped addition to your board book collection. With vibrant colors and easy to read bold text, this book will entertain the very young. Spot, the puppy, makes his Mom a Valentine’s Day surprise. (This is not a Spot lift-the-flap book.)
Author: Eric Hill was a British author that wrote and illustrated the Spot extensive book collection. He was awarded the Officer of the Order of the British Empire.
Literacy Activity: Have your kids make/decorate (much younger children) Valentine’s Day cards for their loved ones.
2) Llama Llama I love you By: Anna Dewdney Ages: 2-4 Grades: Preschool Board Book
Llama Llama I love you by Anna Dewdney is an adorable Valentine’s board book to add to your Valentine’s Day collection. This book is a short and sweet book about making and giving Valentine’s Day cards and other Valentine’s Day gifts.
Author: Anna Dewdney was an award-winning author and illustrator, teacher, and mother.
Literacy Activity: Have your kids make/decorate (much younger kids) Valentine’s Day cards for their classmates, friends, and loved ones. Teachers/Paraprofessionals/Parents can legibly write the answers underneath the children’s writing for younger children.
3) The I Love You Book By: Todd Parr Ages: 3-7 Grades: Preschool-First Grade Hardcover
The I Love You Book by Todd Parr is another vividly colored book about unconditional love. It illustrated how children are loved no matter what the everyday situation brings. Although this is not specifically a Valentine’s Day book, this is a wonderful celebration of love.
Author: Todd Parr is a New York Times Bestselling author. His books have an inclusive feel, and the importance of respecting yourself no matter who you are.
1) Brainstorm with the children the reasons they love their parents.
2) Write I love you because of Valentine’s Day cards. Teachers/Paraprofessionals/Parents can legibly write the answers underneath the children’s writing for younger children.
4) Arthur’s Valentine By: Marc Brown Ages: 6-9 Grades: First Grade- Third Grade Paperback
Arthur’s Valentine by Marc Brown is an oldie but goodie. Arthur (who is an aardvark) receives several Valentine’s Day cards from a secret admirer. His mystery friend writes poems to pique Arthur’s curiosity. Can you figure out who it is before the secret is revealed?
Author: Marc Brown is an author and illustrator who has created many Arthur books. He has won 3 Emmys from his work related to the Arthur PBS show associated with his books.
Literacy Activity: Have children create poems in their Valentine’s Day cards. The younger children may choose to create an Acrostic poem; whereas, older children might try their hands at a Haiku or Cinquain poems. For definitions for these 3 different types of poetry, please go to the Young Writers® website.
5) The Invisible String Written by: Patricia Karst & Illustrated by: Joanne Lew-Vriethoff
Ages: 6-9 Grades: First Grade-Third Grade Paperback (slightly oversized)
The Invisible String is not outright a Valentine’s Day book. However, this is a powerful story about love even if the person is not physically there. This book deals with separation anxiety, loneliness, and loss. It briefly alludes to loss caused by death in a non-religious way.
Author: Patricia Karst is a bestselling author and speaker. This book has been recognized worldwide and has been used in a variety of platforms including schools, adoption and foster organizations, hospitals, therapists…
Activity: Create a collage of people you want “the magic string” to connect on a poster board. Paste a heart cut out behind each person. Then, have some colored yarn connecting all the people.
Grades: Second Grade- Fifth Grade
The Valentine Bears is a humorous story about two married bears. This is another oldie but goodie. Although bears hibernate in the winter, Mrs. Bear has decided that this year she and Mr. Bear are going to celebrate Valentine’s Day properly. But all Mr. Bear wants to do is continue sleeping. Mrs. Bear goes to great lengths to make the day special. Will she be able to rouse Mr. Bear to enjoy the day?
Literacy Activity: Have children create poems for Valentine’s Day. Then, Have them put the poems on card stock (heart shaped) frames for parents.
You can also have your students create a “gift” for their parents by creating a coupon good for fill in the blank. This could be for cleaning my room/ taking out the trash/emptying the dishwasher… This will be generated by what the student is willing to do.
Science Activity: Create a report/diorama/webpage… about bears. Have the students read between 3-5 non-fiction books/websites/see videos about bears. Take this opportunity, if you have not done so already, to talk about vetting a website for accurate information, or collaborate with your school’s librarian on teaching children how to do this. For younger children, you might give them a list of websites that you have researched about bears.
Scavenger Hunt for Parents & Teachers
Create a scavenger hunt using heart-shaped cutouts. Parents can use the house and teachers can use the school. An example for parents might be, (clue on the heart) Go to the place where you sleep. (For younger children, it can be on the bed. For older children, you might make it a harder riddle.) At the end of the scavenger hunt, there will be a card and treat/toy for each child… Parents will have to write out the clues and hide them, remember where they are hidden, and in what order. You can number them.
An example for teachers might be, When you get a boo boo, you go here? Solicit answers from the kids until someone says, nurse. Then when you get to the nurse’s office, the nurse will hand the teacher the next clue on the heart. This will take a fair amount of planning and collaboration between the teacher and the school staff. If there is no school staff (preschool situation), the clues can be hidden on the playground, in different play areas… At the end of the scavenger hunt, there will be a note attached to a treat for each child. Please see my printables for Valentine’s Day notes.
Notes with treats at the end of the Scavenger Hunt. I am beary happy you are in my class! would go with a bag of Teddy Grahams or Gummy Bears. I am very happy you are in my school! would go with Goldfish crackers or Swedish fish. Please feel free to copy and paste these below 4 Valentine’s Day tags into Word or PPT, cut them out, and attach them to the corresponding bags.