Valentine's Day Crafts That Are Fun and Easy for Kids to Make
Encourage kids to show sweet sentiments with tokens of affection that go beyond the store-bought card. Most of the projects require only a bit of cutting and a little gluing; all can be decorated to their heart's desire.
Your fondest memories of Valentine's Day may actually be from a time when you weren't even in a relationship. After all, handing out handmade Valentine's greetings loaded with sweets to classmates and teachers is one of the school year's best moments. There are so many ways that kids can incorporate classic emblems of Valentine's Day spirit—from roses to chocolate and heartfelt gifts—without having to think about true romance. The following ideas and how-tos can be crafted with the whole family on a fun February afternoon, and they make perfect presents for preschool teachers, classmates, grandparents, aunts, uncles, friends, and neighbors, too.
Glue and paper crafting supplies are fodder for Valentine's Day fun, and many of our best handmade cards are actually a joy to make. Skip store-bought Valentine's Day card sets and opt to create your own versions of our cheeky cards that'll make any Valentine smile; some cards are themed more classically, like our pipe-cleaner smooches idea, while others are a bit unexpected. Our "love bug" Valentine's cards, for one, incorporate fun toy tchotchkes for those who aren't big on chocolate or sweets. There's even a few ideas that make use of common household items that can be upcycled into a Valentine's Day surprise.
But if your little preschooler has something sweet in mind, we have a few ideas for incorporating handmade sweets that move way beyond convenience store candy. Try adorning greeting cards with candy dots, for example, or creating little goodie bags made with glassine sleeves full of your favorite candy in bulk. To start your family off with a bit of heartfelt inspiration, here are some of the sweetest ways kids can get in on the Valentine's Day excitement this year.
Inspire their creativity with mini washable easels! Perfect as classroom valentines, especially when packaged with chalk and a clip-art tag, this small gift says it all: "You color my world."
Twisted Friendship Bracelets
Nothing says "BFFs 4ever" like a friendship bracelet, and this technique is so speedy, she can weave one for every kid in her class.
Love Bug Valentines
If you're looking for a non-candy alternative for your kids to hand out this year, these toys are sure to be a hit. Wind one up and watch it scoot across the floor!
Three special words: "Be my Valen-slime!" Whip up a batch of this fluffy, soft goo as a fun and easy science activity to do with kids. Try adding red glitter, confetti hearts, or pretty-in-pink colors. Then, simply package in a jar and top it off with one of our printable punny labels.
Making these wooden hearts is as easy as applying one coat of paint. On Valentine's Day, have the kids play secret admirer by tucking a few of them into unsuspecting lunch boxes, desktop containers, or coat pockets.
Folding Heart Valentines
Friends will be aflutter over envelopes that turn into valentines. Cut a heart from paper that has a white side and a patterned side—wrapping paper works well.
Valentine's Day Treat Packages
To make these custom treat packages, cut out a picture of your child, scan it, and print onto heavyweight matte paper. Cut tags using pinking shears for the bottom edges, draw hearts, and stamp or write a message on each one. Fold the tags and tape them to cellophane bags filled with sweets.
Fill flattened cupcake liners with candy for a treat you won't have to bake. The liners' pleats nicely frame scrap-art pictures or paper hearts (we used scalloping scissors to trim some). Use a craft punch or paper flowers to make cute borders.
Patterned Paper Wrap
Store-bought treats are more special when covered in pretty patterned paper. Pen a note on the underside or on a tag attached with waxed twine. Tuck gum into a card stock "matchbook" stamped with a message; sticks of gum sold in large packs often have plain white wrappers that are perfect for decorating with stickers. A lollipop adorned with a sticker and taped to a card stock heart will also be welcome, as would button candy slipped into a small paper bag embellished with die-cut scrap art (available at crafts stores).
This practical valentine marks the sweetest spot in a book.