A Dauphin County mom and pre-k teacher, Jaimee, shares this fun Valentine’s Day activity that encourages children to learn and be creative!

Hands on learning is so much fun, especially when candy is involved! Grab a bag or two of conversation hearts and let the fun (and learning!) begin!

There are so many ways to use conversation hearts to help any child learn. For the youngest learners, talk about the shape and colors. Help young children recognize letters and words written on the hearts. Use them to teach counting, addition and subtraction, as well as fine motor skills by manipulating the hearts and trying to stack them.

The following activities are with my boys, ages 3 and 6, but I also do all of these in my preschool classroom.

  1. First, talk about the shape and colors. We labeled all the colors and then sorted them.
  2. We counted each color to see how many there were. We wrote down the numbers and then compared them. Which one has the most? Which one has the least? Do any have the same amount?
  3. We took some of each color and placed them in a cup. We made predictions of what would happen if we poured hot water over them and wrote them down. Our prediction was that the hearts would melt. Then we poured the hot water in and set them aside.
  4. We also made patterns like pink-yellow-pink-yellow or green-green-purple-green-green-purple.
  5. We used the hearts to make the letter shapes and to spell sight words.
  6. We then used that to fingerprint on aluminum foil! I taped the foil down so it did not slide while the boys were painting. My 3 year old refused to touch it, but my older son LOVED it!

We spent about 45 minutes doing all of these activities. My 3 year old had a harder time staying with the activities that long. He ended up building towers (a great fine-motor activity) while my older son continued with the letters and patterns.

We went back to check on the hearts we put in water. Our prediction was right! The hearts melted and turned the water the color of the hearts. Then we added flour to each cup to make them thick.

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