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Thursday, February 2, 2012

Lots of Hearts!

Yay! It’s time to bring on the Valentine projects. I usually set aside the week before a holiday to just do fun holiday preschool activities. The kids get more excited for the holiday and I like the change of pace. So this next week we’ll be doing lots of Valentine’s Day activities.

valentine lacing

  • Lace-y Valentine … I pulled this idea out of my Family Fun magazine
    1. Use valentine colors to paint a piece of cardstock. Let dry.
    2. Glue the painted paper to thin cardboard (like a cereal box)
    3. Cut out a heart shape, add more glue around the edges if you need to.
    4. Use a hole punch to punch holes all around the outside edge. My kids love to try, but the hole punch is usually a little too hard for them. Any suggestions??
    5. Let the kids write “I LOVE YOU” or another message on the back of the heart
    6. Knot one end of a shoelace (or ribbon or yarn with one end taped) and start lacing!

Sweet Hearts

  • Read Sweet Hearts by Jan Carr … I love all of Dorothy Donohue’s cut paper illustrations!
    1. This is a simple & cute book about a little bear who hides hearts all around for his family to find.
    2. My kids like taking turns finding the hearts in the pictures
    3. I plan to make the secret message hearts (below) ahead of time and hide them around the room so when we are finished with the books, the kids can go and find their own “Sweet Hearts”!

valentine secret

  • Secret Valentine’s Day Messages … from Better Homes & Gardens!
    1. Cut out several hearts from white paper
    2. Write a message with white crayon.
    3. Use watercolors and a paint brush to reveal the message!

valentine yarn

  • Yarn Hearts … I’m still trying to decide if I’m brave enough to try this one from Family Fun.
    1. Make a cornstarch glue by mixing 1/4 cup cornstarch and 1/2 cup water in a saucepan. Stir until smooth.
    2. Heat over medium heat until thick and clear. Remove from heat.
    3. Cool to the touch.
    4. Cut red, pink or white yarn in foot-long pieces
    5. Place heart shaped cookie cutter on parchment paper.
    6. Push the yarn into the glue, then use thumb and finger to remove excess glue.
    7. Lay the yarn inside the cookie cutter. Repeat.
    8. Remove the cookie cutter and allow to dry for a day, or place the heart and parchment paper in the oven on low heat for an hour or two.

heartsstickergame

photo and idea from The Parent Drive Thru

  • Red Heart Sticker Game … we don’t usually use face cards at our house, but I think I will get a set, just to pull out all of the heart cards for this cute game!
    1. Draw a large heart on a piece of paper.
    2. Only use the 1-10 (or even just 1-5) heart cards from a deck of cards.
    3. Shuffle the cards and draw one.
    4. Place that many stickers around your heart.
    5. Take turns and continue until your heart is full!

DSC08559

  • Sort, Guess & Check Marshmallows … I modified this great idea from No Time for Flashcards.
    1. Use a veggie plate as a sorter. I just saw these clear trays at Dollar Tree! These work perfectly for sorting all sorts of things!
      heart marshmallows3
    2. Fill the center with colorful mini marshmallows.
    3. Use fingers or tongs to sort the colors.
    4. Cut out a heart shape from cardstock.
    5. Draw one large heart and one small heart inside.
      DSC08560
    6. Let the kids guess how many marshmallows it will take to line the smallest heart.
    7. Line the heart with marshmallows and count as you go. How close were they?!
      DSC08559
    8. Now have them guess how many marshmallows it will take to line the larger heart and count.
    9. Clear the heart and have them try again with the last two colors (they will probably guess much closer this time!)

heartmusicalchairs  heartmusicalchairs2

  • Musical Hearts Game … photos and idea from No Time for Flashcards
    1. Cut out several large hearts from red, pink & white paper.
    2. Write a physical activity on each heart … I love her ideas:
      • Fly like a butterfly
      • Wiggle like a worm
      • Do the robot Smile
      • Jump on one foot
      • Crab walk
    3. Arrange the hearts in a circle on the floor. You can even laminate these or stick them to the floor with clear contact paper.
    4. Play some fun music.
    5. Walk around the hearts until the music stops and do that activity!
    6. With my two kids, we’ll just take turns. They can both walk on the hearts, but we’ll choose the heart my 2-year-old is standing on first. The next time, we’ll choose the heart my 4-year-old is standing on!

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