I have to admit that though I enjoy homeschooling and do believe it’s the best choice for our family, there are times I worry about the things my kids might be missing out on. Usually, it’s the things I enjoyed most as a child that come to mind, things like classroom parties and fun celebrations. I mean, don’t you remember how much you looked forward to things like the Valentine’s Day party at school? Sweet treats, cards from friends, and an air of excitement just made the day extra special.
With that in mind, I like to make holidays special in our homeschool, too, and the best part about homeschool holiday celebrations is that, as parent educators, we get to decide the focus and turn Valentine’s Day into an opportunity to learn about more than Cupid.
Sure, we can discuss romantic love and enjoy hearts and chocolate (who doesn’t?), but we can also learn WHY we celebrate those things on February 14. In addition, we can dig deeper and take the opportunity to teach our kids about love, true love. (Did anybody else flash back to the wedding scene of The Princess Bride just now?)
In honor of the holiday, I thought I’d share some ways I plan to do just that this year. Oh, we’re looking forward to our homeschool group’s party this week. The kids have been getting their little Valentine cards all ready, but I’m also looking forward to teaching them more about the history of the day and about what love really looks like.
Here are two things we’ll be focusing on this week, as well as some free resources you can find online to help teach your kids about Valentine’s Day, as well as the reason for it: love.
Who Was St. Valentine?
I’m not Catholic so I truly don’t know much about the various saints of the Catholic church. We’ve been studying the Middle Ages lately so we’ve been reading about a variety of them in a book called Trial and Triumph, which tells stories from the history of the church. St. Valentine isn’t in it, though, so I’ve been looking for resources online. Here are a few that I’ve found:
- A reading comprehension activity pack from ABCteach.com
- A unit on the history of Valentine’s Day for kindergarten through 5th Grade from Free Homeschool Deals
- The Story of St. Valentine: More Than Cards and Candied Hearts by Voice of the Martyrs
What is True Love?
While Valentine’s Day is all often all about romantic love, I want my kids to consider the source of true love and what it really is. Valentine’s Day is a perfect opportunity to teach them what the Bible says about love. Here are some of the Scripture passages we’ll look at and learn from:
- 1 Corinthians 13 – It’s called the “Love Chapter” after all. It’s a great place to begin looking about what love really looks like. My kids love crafts and this Heart Peacock craft teaches the attributes of true love in a very creative way. You can also use these printable cards to help kids remember what 1 Corinthians 13 teaches. They can be used for matching games, Go Fish and more! For older kids, this cute spinner craft is a great way to review the attributes of Biblical love. My oldest loves to do word searches so I’ll definitely be printing out this word search based on 1 Corinthians 13. We might also make this banner to decorate the window by our table for Valentine’s Day dinner!
- Proverbs 17:17 – Friendship. It’s so important, but it can be difficult. Relationships are hard, even for kids. This great free coloring page will help kids (and adults!) remember that “A friend loves at all times.”
- Matthew 22:37 – This verse is the theme verse for our church’s children’s ministry so my kids are pretty familiar with it, but Valentine’s Day is a good time to remind them of the way they should love the Lord – with everything they have! This maze is a fun activity for reviewing the verse.
- Of course, our kids’ learning about true love could never be complete without learning how the Lord loves them. 1 John 3:16 is a beautiful reminder of how we know what love is. John 3:16 goes with it, and I love this printable Valentine card that features that verse!
- Finally, for more verses about God’s love the kids can learn, check out these printable verse cards! They can be used as a countdown to Valentine’s Day or as Valentine’s cards themselves.
How about you? How do you celebrate Valentine’s Day in your homeschool? In your home? I’d love to hear your suggestions, and if you’re wondering, I found almost all these ideas on Pinterest, which I love. Follow me for more great ideas, inspiring posts and more!