I’m all for thinking outside the box on Valentine’s Day. One year I brought in a speaker on STDs, but sadly there was a terrible blizzard and the library was closed. I do find, however, that as long as you don’t make it too couples oriented most teens appreciate the classic hearts and love theme. I’ve had more than one high school teen tell me they miss the class parties they had when they were younger and liked the “not boyfriend/girlfriend” hearts and love program at the library. So, here are a few ideas for your Valentine’s programs that I haven’t seen everywhere:
Yes, I said avoid couples stuff. That doesn’t mean you can’t get in some sneaky literacy by having them write love letters. The key is that the letter doesn’t have to be from them or even to a person. They can write love letters between fictional characters (cough, fanfiction), to a family member or pet, to their celebrity crush, or even to their favorite meal, book, or hobby if that’s what they are passionate about. I once read a love letter to dance that would make you cry.
An exercise often used by writing teachers a heart map is a visual representation of things the student cares about. To make this one into a teen program I would provide large sheets of paper, a lot of colorful pens, stickers, and other embellishments like glitter. This would be a fun activity to do while listening to music or watching a movie.
Light Up Circuit Valentines
If you want to put a little making into your Valentine’s program than this tutorial from Left Brain, Craft Brain will show you how to make light up Valentine’s cards with simple circuits.
Heart Breakers: Baked Cotton Balls
Did you know that bake cotton balls get hard and then you can smash them with a hammer? Whether you’re planning a full on anti-Valentine’s program or just want to give your teens the option of working out a little bit of love related angst this “recipe” from LalyMom will get you started.
Zentangle Hearts Lesson
Overwhelmed with no real time to plan and prep a program? Why not spend a small amount of money ($3.00) and get one ready to go from Teachers Pay Teachers? This Heart Zentangle Lesson is a finished Powerpoint. Just hand out the supplies and have fun.
Top 10 Lists
Top 10 Love Songs? Top 10 Breakup Songs? Top 10 Fictional Couples? Teens love to argue about the things they love, and you can even sneak in some literacy skills. You can read more about one variation of this program on my personal site.