How to Celebrate Valentine’s Day at Your Child Care Center

With Valentine’s Day just around the corner, it’s time to start planning themed activities to celebrate the holiday at your childcare center. Valentine’s Day is a great opportunity for kids to create handmade gifts and memories that will last a lifetime, especially for their parents.

Let us play matchmaker this Valentine’s day, between you and some fun, heart-themed celebration ideas that everyone at your child care center will love. The best part? They can all probably be set up using supplies you already have available to you.

Valentine’s Themed Snacks

Luckily, brands are often ahead of the curve when it comes to holiday-themed foods, which makes a heart-themed snack time a breeze. It’s easy to find special Valentine’s themed cereals and treats this time of year that will help set the tone for any celebrations at your child care center.

Want a more DIY approach? Using a heart-shaped cookie cutter on a sandwich will give you a picturesque shape that kids will love.

A heart-shaped sandwich sits in a metal dish.

Remember to always consult your state’s list of acceptable snacks and foods for your child care center. Celebrations are fun, but safety is always number one.

Make it a Spirit Week

Keep the celebration going for more than just one day. Use a newsletter or send a message via Jackrabbit Care’s Parent Engagement App to let parents know ahead of time that you’re doing a Valentine’s themed week. Request children wear red, pink or white to fit the Valentine’s theme. Starting earlier than Valentine’s Day itself also gives you, parents, and your children more time to display and enjoy any crafts or decorations that they end up making during that period.


Two preschoolers point to a book held by a teacher during storytime.
Already have a storytime in your day-to-day schedule? Make it Valentine’s themed! Keep the romance novels at home though. Aim for a book that shows the love of a parent, grandparent, or pet to keep things simple for your audience. Check out these titles for a quick pick suitable for young children.

Get Crafty

Valentine’s crafts are a fantastic way to make long-lasting memories and keepsakes for both the children in your care and their parents and guardians as well. Not only do crafts offer kids a chance to further develop their motor skills and learn about colors, but they also let kids express themselves in a pure way. Who wouldn’t want a gift from their little one that comes straight from their heart?

Valentine’s Cards

A young boy crafts a heart shaped card with help from a teacher.

A simple and memorable classic! Have kids decorate a paper heart for mom, dad, their guardian or a friend. Set them up with all the essentials; glue, construction paper, finger paints, and any other age-appropriate art supplies they may need to make their little Valentine’s masterpieces. Help them get started by showing a few examples of what they could create.

Tissue Paper Flowers

All you need for this craft is tissue paper and pipe cleaners! Just fold up the tissue paper, wrap the center with a green pipe cleaner and open the paper around it. In less than a few minutes, you’ll have a bouquet-ready tissue paper flower. Scissors can also be used to go the extra mile but should be avoided or used only with supervision depending on the ages of the children in your care.

Pipe Cleaner Hearts

Maybe the easiest to make on our list, a pipe cleaner heart only takes a few pipe cleaners and twists to make something unique to each student. To get the most out of these nifty little creations, make sure that kids have lots of color options and encourage them to combine them to get something special for each of them. These are also great crafts to display in the classroom. Hang them up overhead so everyone can see what a good job they’ve done. Make sure to put each child’s name on them so they can take it home after the holiday celebrations have ended!

No matter which of these ideas you use at your child care center, we’re sure they will help create some keepsakes and treasures that parents and kids alike will hang onto for years to come. Find one you love and run with it.

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