We’ve talked about it in the past, but we are huge fans of thematic units. As Valentine’s Day approaches, we brainstormed ways to bring the theme of Valentine’s Day into your ELA block. And we have some great ideas to share. Valentine’s Day writing is the perfect opportunity to expand on students’ writing skills, while also engaging them in the holiday spirit.
We are sharing three ways to bring Valentine’s Day writing to your classroom! All of these activities are effective for elementary students, no matter what stage of writing they are in (because it never hurts to review)!
Valentine’s Day Sentence Writing
Learning to write well-formed sentences is essential to our students’ growth as writers. It is important for students to write clear and correct sentences, with all the right elements such as a subject, predicate, capitalization, and punctuation. However, students see grammar and syntax as pretty boring and repetitive (cue the “Ugh, we already talked about this!”).
Valentine’s Day sentence writing reinforces the use of proper grammar and syntax with thematic prompts and is also a great way to support the acquisition and use of themed vocabulary. You can easily adapt this to various grade levels and abilities, by focusing on basic sentence writing or work on expanding simple sentences.
Here are a few prompts to get you started –
- Write sentences about your favorite candy.
- Write about ways you can show kindness to others.
- Write about someone you love.
- Write sentences about items such as hearts and flowers, or about themes like thankfulness and love.
One way to increase engagement when writing Valentine’s Day sentences is to show students a picture and have them write about it. Using visuals is not only engaging, but can support students who struggle to develop ideas independently.
If students need additional scaffolds, try providing a list of verbs for them to use in their writing such as love, give, like, share, hug, deliver, send, or write.
You can also target the practice of skills you’ve already taught, like capitalization, correct punctuation, or subject/verb agreement. This can make the writing process feel less overwhelming because students can focus on one particular skill as they write.
If you want to practice sentence writing, but are short on planning time, this Valentine’s Day Sentence Writing Resource includes multiple activities like writing about pictures, identifying subject and verb, fixing sentences, and more!
This differentiated resource is perfect for students in grades K-2 who are learning to write in complete sentences or those in upper grades who could use a review! You can also pair the activity with our How to Write a Complete Sentence YouTube video to reinforce the parts of sentences in stations, after a mini-lesson, or as an early-finisher activity.
How to Write a Valentine’s Day Letter
Nothing says Valentine’s Day quite like a letter! (And it definitely beats those generic store-bought cards.) You can level up students’ writing skills with a Valentine’s Day letter-writing activity. In this activity, students will be writing a personal or descriptive letter. While sending a Valentine’s Day card is often seen as something young students do, this activity works really well for older students, too! This writing practice helps students expand on sentences with descriptive terms and conjunctions, while also thinking about the perspective of the receiver of the note.
When students are writing, have them focus on these three elements –
- Special moments or memories. Talk about how students can incorporate things like inside jokes, significant memories, or heartfelt wishes. Ask students to write about a favorite moment they have with the person. You can even explain the significance of a handwritten letter, which can give the recipient the warm fuzzies in appreciation.
- An explanation of why you’re writing to this specific person. Students should tell the recipient the things they love about them. Have students explain in their letters why they are writing to this person, and list some of the things they love most about them. It never hurts to model this for students. You can even write a letter to the class about how much you appreciate them.
- Keep it original. People can sense authenticity. The person on the receiving end of these letters wants to see the authors personality shine through. Encourage your students to think beyond a “roses are red, violets are blue” poem or a corny Valentine’s Day cliche. Anything in this Valentine’s Day writing that shows touches of sincerity will make the letter feel original and personal.
Want more letter writing style activities? Check out our blog on writing thank you notes!
Our Valentine’s Day letter writing activity is perfect for bridging ELA work with fun and excitement. It focuses on writing each part of a letter with specific, clear details and complete sentences while celebrating Valentine’s Day. Plus, this activity gives students the power of choice when writing (which we know increases engagement), so you can support those reluctant writers.
Valentine’s Day Paragraph Writing
Continue to challenge students’ writing skills with paragraph writing. Because students are experiencing higher engagement with Valentine’s Day writing, this is a good time for for students to practice the paragraph skills they have been learning. They can practice the essential parts of a paragraph with fun prompts!
Students can convince their audience why hand-made cards are better than store-bought, or give them an opinion on the best candy.
Here are a few more prompts you can use-
- Write about how to show love to the people that are important to you.
- If there was more love in the world, what would that look like?
- The best way to practice showing love is by _________.
- Write about a day in the life of Cupid
- If I invented my own Valentine’s candy, it would be…
- If I had to explain love to an alien from another planet, I would describe it as _____.
Remember to include the correct format for a paragraph either on the board or on an anchor chart. Paragraphs should include the topic, details to support it, and a conclusion sentence to tie it all together.
Want a ready-to-go Valentine’s Day paragraph writing activity?
It never hurts to practice paragraph writing! With this Valentine’s Day Paragraph writing resource, students will use thematic question prompts, pictures, and topics, to compose their own paragraphs. Students can practice the entire writing process- from brainstorming to publishing!
We hope you’ve found some Valentine’s Day writing ideas that you can bring into class this year! Incorporating these writing activities into your Valentine’s Day lesson plans is a great way to get your students excited about writing, while also practicing important language skills. Be sure to provide plenty of positive feedback and encouragement to help your students feel successful and confident in their writing.
Of course, you don’t have to ditch all of the holiday fun along the way. There is still time for candy and cookies. Happy Valentine’s Day!