Happy Valentine’s Day

Celebrate Valentine’s Day with your young learners!

What will you teach through songs and poems about Valentine’s Day?

Letters and Shapes: I love creating letter shapes and heart shapes. Students can use their fingers, arms, whole body, or even make a shape with a friend. 

For my Japanese students, the sound /v/ can be challenging. This is a perfect way to practice it.

Movement: Students can do movements in place as well as from one place to another. As young learners grow, we can help them to learn these movement skills, like marching, tiptoeing, galloping, jumping, skipping, etc. 

Working with a partner: Valentine poems and songs often invite children to face a partner and hold hands. They can talk about how they want to move together.

This poem prepares children to make a heart shape.

  1. Fingerplay:

I put my hands together.  (put the heels of your hands together)

This is how I start.  (hold)

I curve my fingers just like this (curve your fingers to touch each other)

and now I have a heart.  (this should make a heart shape)

 This little song is a favorite of my students and the teachers I work with. You might recognize the melody as “Cho Cho”  or “Lightly Row.”  It focuses on the sound /v/ for Valentine.  When the children hear the word “valentine,” they make a heart shape with their fingers, arms, or whole body.

2. Be My Valentine words by Kathy Kampa

from Kathy Kampa’s Special Days and Holidays CD

I like you. You like me. Will you be my Valentine?

I like you. You like me. Be my Valentine.

[v] [v] Valentine!

[v] [v] Valentine!

I like you. You like me.

Be my Valentine.

Here’s a video link to give you some ideas of how to move to the song.  Special thanks to my nieces Brooke and Shannon for helping out. They were quite little when we made this video. Enjoy!

This next Valentine’s Day song is called “I’m Your Friend,” from my album Jump Jump Everyone. This song invites students to move in various ways, such as skipping, jumping, walking, and even skating! Developing gross motor skills is important for young learners. 

Many songs for young learners use rhyming schemes to build language skills. You’ll hear mine, nine, and Valentine as rhyming words.

You can sing this with small or large classes.  Here are the lyrics to the song.

3. I’m Your Friend words and music by Kathy Kampa

From Jump Jump Everyone CD

Chorus:

I’m your friend. You are mine.

Will you be my Valentine?

I’m your friend. You are mine.

Will you be my Valentine?

Let’s walk.

  1. Walk, walk, walk with me. Walking, walking, 1-2-3,

4-5-6, 7-8-9,  Will you be my Valentine?

*repeat with skip, jump, slide, skate, dance

With a small group, it’s easy to have all of the students join hands in a circle.

.Here’s a video clip of one of my Magic Time classes in Tokyo singing “I’m Your Friend.” 

Try these variations!

 -Dance with a partner. Face a partner for the chorus. On the verses, hold hands and dance together around the circle.

-Stop and clap  during the counting section:  4-5-6 clap to one side; 7-8-9 clap to the other side

-Make small heart shapes with hands and big heart shapes with arms.

Need an art activity?

I love to add art activities to my Valentine’s Day lessons. Here are some fun ideas I’ve collected on Pinterest.

To find the songs in this post, check out my CDs Kathy Kampa’s Special Days and Holidays and Jump Jump Everyone.

Kathy Kampa's Special Days and Holidays
 Mimi CD cover 2015-10-12 at 1.04.43 AM
Celebrate Valentine's Day with these engaging activities for young learners

Kathy Kampa is a teacher, author, and teacher-trainer who specializes in working with young learners. As a former PYP (Primary Years Program) teacher in Tokyo, Japan, she uses a globally-minded and inquiry-based approach to teaching through which students develop 21st-century skills. She also supports the development of English language skills by creating songs, chants, and TPR/movement activities targeted to young learners’ needs.

Kathy and her husband Charles Vilina are also co-authors of Magic TimeEverybody Up, the ELTon award-winning course Oxford Discover, and Beehive, all published by Oxford University Press.

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