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20 Valentine’s Day games for kids and activities for families

Get ready to fall in love with these sweet holiday games for Valentine's Day.
Children and educator preparing Valentine's day
Valentine’s Day is a chance to tell those who are close to you the things you appreciate and love about them, kids included!manonallard / Getty Images stock
/ Source: TODAY

With Valentine's Day on the horizon, parents may be wondering how to celebrate with kids this year.

A day full of love may mean giving your son or daughter an extra hug, or making cards to send to friends and family.

Laura Linn Knight, author of the book "Break free From Reactive Parenting," tells that Valentine’s Day is a chance to tell those who are close to you and in your community the things you appreciate and love about them. 

"Although Valentine’s Day has an interesting history as to why we celebrate, most have come to know this day as an opportunity to express love and affection for those that are close to them," Knight says.

Traditionally, many recognize Valentine’s Day with roses, candy and the well-known valentine card. 

"In recent years, however, it seems as though more people are moving away from the traditional Valentine’s gifts with the opinion that showing love should be done out of want rather than a designated day and because of the financial strain Valentine’s Day can cause," Knight says.

Knight says that regardless of how much history you know about why Valentine’s Day came to be, the underlying message we can take from this day is one of great importance — kindness, connection and love for those closest to you and in your community.

"Valentine’s Day is also a wonderful opportunity to practice gratitude for others in a fun and festive way," Knight says.

Knight encourages parents to "use the excitement and buzz" surrounding Valentine's Day to practice kindness and gratitude, using her own family as an example.

"This (may look) like reading the same picture books each year that emphasize kindness — an all-time favorite is 'Somebody Loves You, Mr. Hatch' by Eileen Spinelli — and writing notes of gratitude to the people in our family, neighborhood and school," she says.

Knight offers two easy Valentine's Day activities for kids:

Gratitude Box

"One of my favorite ways to celebrate Valentine’s Day is with a gratitude box," Knight says. "This is a fun and affordable Valentine’s Day gift, but it’s also very meaningful as well."

To make a gratitude box, have your child decorate a shoebox or a small cardboard box. Fill the box with letters of appreciation for the person you are giving the box to. 

"This is a great way to teach your child about gratitude and give someone a gift they can cherish for years to come," Knight says. 

DIY Crayons

"This is a project I cherish making with my children each year and it is perfect for school-aged children that want to bring a Valentine to school," Knight tells

To make DIY crayons, collect old and broken crayons in your home, take off the wrappers and break them up into a big bowl. 

After you have all your crayon pieces ready, use heart shaped molds to put the pieces in. Put the molds on a baking tray and cook at 275 degrees until all crayons are melted. 

"Take the molds out of the oven to let the crayons cool and — ta-da, you have a homemade and heartfelt Valentine gift," Knight says.

20 Valentine's Day games for kids and activities for families

Whether it’s a family night in playing tic-tac-toe or a cookie decorating contest, here are 20 Valentine's Day games for kids and activities for families to enjoy together this year.

  • Make a gratitude box.
  • Craft some homemade crayons.
  • Play ring toss using plastic red cups.
  • Valentine's Day tic-tac-toe.
  • A family scavenger hunt.
  • A neighborhood Valentine's Day piñata.
  • A cookie decorating contest.
  • Valentine's Day word searches.
  • Play "I spy" using only pink, red and white.
  • Decorate cards.
  • Make a heart-shaped pizza.
  • Pin the arrow on the heart.
  • Make sentences using conversation heart candies.
  • See who can decorate a Valentine's Day card fastest.
  • Valentine's Day coloring pages.
  • Valentine's Day bingo.
  • Blindly identify types of chocolate: Hershey Kiss, Dove, etc.
  • Play Valentine's Day-themed "Outburst" with DIY topics.
  • Make a DIY hopscotch game using cut-out hearts.
  • Create candy bags and deliver to neighbors. Make it a game by trying not to get caught!

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