I must admit, Valentine’s day hasn’t always excited me. But oddly enough, I’ve been really into it this year! Holiday themes are always fun to incorporate into family activities, lesson plans and therapy plans to keep learning and “work” fun and novel for our children.
One of the great things about Valentine’s Day is all the CANDY and chocolate, lots of chocolate! Can you tell I have a BIG sweet tooth? One type of candy that I don’t really love eating are the traditional and famous Sweet Heart and Sweet Tart Conversation Hearts. What’s a speech language pathologist to do if not eat them? Incorporate them into therapy of course. A good thing about conversation hearts is that they are fairly cheap to buy, and one bag comes with more than enough to use… or eat if you like them.
I have compiled a list of easy and fun activities to do with conversation hearts for this Valentine’s Day week. Let me know what you think!
Matching Hearts: Get a few pieces of construction paper (matching the conversation hearts) and have your child sort each heart to its matching colored piece of paper.
Extension: After sorting, you can count the number of hearts in each color and graph the information on a bar graph, or talk about quantitative concepts “more” “less” “most”, etc
I Spy: Place conversation hearts in an opaque container or sack and take turns with your child/students drawing a conversation heart out of the sack. For each color drawn the player must find the matching color in the room.
Silly Yes/No questions: Many times, conversation hearts or Sweet Tart hearts have “yes” “no” and “maybe” messages on them. Play a game of questions and answer each question with a heart. (Ex: Does a dog meow? (No), Can a cow fly? (yes), Is it time for bed? (maybe).
Sentence Building: Turn the hearts to its blank side and use an ultra-thin point sharpie to write different words with various parts of speech (pronoun, noun, verb, adjective, adverbs, etc). Mix them all up and have your child make sentences with them.
Bingo: If you have a Bingo game at home, instead of using the chips, use the conversation hearts as markers to give the game a lovely, yet simple twist. If you don’t have a BINGO game, here is a link to a cute and free Valentine’s themed one created by a fellow educator : copy this link in your browser: https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/FREEBIE-Valentines-Day-Bingo-1682726
Figurative language: Sometimes there are messages like “head over heels” “sweet talk” “you shine” “love is in the air” on valentine’s day cards or conversation hearts. Ask your child what they think each saying might mean. Explain to them what they mean if they aren’t sure.
Conversation challenge: Each player gets a handful of Conversation hearts. Youngest player starts and places a heart that could initiate a conversation (e.g. “hello”), the next player must try to keep the conversation going with a message from their conversation heart stash. The player who uses all, or the most of their hearts is the “King” or “Queen” of Hearts!
Arts and Crafts: These little candies are fun to eat, fun to play with, and fun to use for decorations in any art or craft activity. Encourage your child’s creative juices, as he/she creates a card, jewelry, drawing, or decorate a craft box with conversation hearts as a gift or to celebrate Valentine’s Day.
To love and lovely conversations,