Seasonal Literacy: Valentine's Day

Happy February and Happy Groundhog Day!  Are you hoping for an early spring or more winter?  It feels as if we haven't had much of a winter here in NE Ohio, but no complaints here.  This month, I want to share a couple ways I have incorporated the excitement of Valentine's Day in our classroom.

The first one involves those little mailboxes they have a Target in the Dollar Spot; you will need 5 of them. The ones pictured are the metal ones with a detachable opening in the front, but I've also used the plastic ones with a slot for math.  You could absolutely use those for this too.  I used a piece of index card to write each of the 5 vowels and taped one vowel to the flag of each mailbox.  I pulled out old valentines and put them to good use.  It seems to every box has a few more cards than I need, so I decided it was time to stop letting them pile up.  I circled a character or object on each Valentine for students to focus on.  They then determined the vowel sound heard in each character and sorted them into the correct mailbox.

This center has been a big hit with the kids over the past 3 years.  I laminated the valentines so they can be used again and have added the valentines I've received from students over the last couple years as well.  You could sort by whatever skill you are working on; we just tend to be working on vowel sounds are this time of the year.  Old valentines could also be used as writing prompts!  I use the plastic mailboxes from the Dollar Spot for math; we practice fact to 5 to build fluency with this freebie.

Our writing center becomes the post office.  Students busy themselves writing letters, special notes and drawing pictures for their friends. I do not have mailboxes in my classroom (though if I could find some I loved I would totally splurge), so I taped a brown paper lunch bag in the hallway for each child.  After creating their "mail", each child donned a mailman vest, purchased at Pat Catans (a local craft store) to deliver the mail.  Mail is transported to the mailboxes in a special mail sack, a felt bag from the Target Dollar Spot.  

Making her deliveries
This task certainly increased the traffic at the writing center!  On each bag, I wrote the child's name and added their little school picture that you get from the photo company. This made it easy for children to deliver their mail.  I have a variety of paper, hearts cut from the Ellison machine, envelopes and stickers for them to make their special mail.  At the end of a few weeks, everyone read the mail in their mailboxes.  This year I'm having students decorate their own mailboxes at the art center for this project as mail delivery starts tomorrow!

I hope this gives you a couple ideas that you can either put to use now or begin gathering materials as they go on sale/clearance and save for next year!


  1. So clever! What an interesting way to use leftover Valentine's Day cards!

    Buzzing with Ms. B

    1. Thanks! The kids love it, and it is an easy way to repurpose the cards.

  2. I love how meaningful you make activities for your students! The vowel sort is my fav!! Thank you for sharing.