Kindergarten/Grade 1: Valentines Day, Past and Present
This project would best fit into the curriculum by being scheduled around Valentine’s Day. By introducing the concept of “the past,” it will help lay the groundwork for future coursework on history. It will also cement color identification and symbol identification.
- To help students understand the concepts of “long ago,” “before,” and “past versus present”
- To identify symbols and colors
- To demonstrate that Americans have a variety of holiday traditions
- To illustrate the importance of friendship and community
- One 40-minute classroom period
Classroom setup and materials:
- colorful paper
- markers or paint
- glue sticks
- computer and projector
- Ask students if they have older brothers and sisters. Ask students these questions:
- “Have you seen pictures of your siblings from when they were younger? Have you seen old pictures of your parents?”
- Tell students that their parents, grandparents, and great-grandparents were once children, too.
- Show a photograph of Daisie Miller Helyar, who was just a normal lady who lived a long time ago. Tell the students that she was born over 100 years ago.
- Explain that some things change over 100 years, but that other things stay the same. For example, we give Valentines to our friends and family today – just like Daisie did.
- Use the computer to show the gallery of Valentines that Daisie received from her friends.
- Explain that when Daisie was in school, she and her classmates demonstrated their friendship by exchanging colorful cards.
- Ask students to identify the shapes (hearts) and colors (mostly red) of the Valentines on-screen. Ask students this question:
- “Do you know what a heart means?” Many of them will know that it represents love. Explain that we love our family and our friends. We don’t have to give them a card every day, but we can show our love by being polite and considerate.
- Explain that Daisie saved the Valentines because they reminded her of how much she loved her friends.
- Transition to an activity: students will use paper and paint to make a Valentine for a family member. They are not required to use red or pink paper.