Wednesday, 10 February 2016

Thematic Unit for Infants: St. Valentine's Day Activities

Children love having 'themed' days in school and Valentine's Day offers a brilliant opportunity to teach a wide range of subjects based on one theme.

This week, I am re-blogging a few lesson ideas I tried out with my Senior Infant class on Valentine's Day a couple of years ago. I hope you find them useful!

English: Creative Writing/Reading
I made out a big card for the class with the word 'love' on the front in a heart. I left it out on the morning of Valentine's Day and told the children that it had arrived in the post for them. First of all, we predicted what might be inside the card. We then opened it up and played a game of I Spy. We spied words with capital letters, words starting with ___, the word love, etc. We then read the card together. Following this, I covered the words on the card with blank sheets of paper. We had to match some words written on flashcards to the card, where they were missing/covered. We wrote a new card as if we were writing it to Mammy and Daddy, as a class (LEA). They children then created their own cards using our class card as an example (To ___, I love you. Love Mary.) 

English: Sight Word: Love
We learned this song during the week leading up to Valentine's day:
We also used the word in our writing and read stories with the word in it (e.g. I Love You as Big as the World).

Maths: Counting to 20 and Estimation
I gave the children little bags of sweets and they had to estimate how many sweets were in the bag. We then counted them all together emphasising moving them to one side as they were counted. When we counted 20 sweets, I asked them to eat one and tell me how many they think they have left and then to check this number. I then got them to make me little groups of sweets: 3, 5, 10, 15, etc.

I handed out a template containing various heart shapes (see below). We looked at each heart on the IWB and talked about how many sweets they thought would fit into each heart size. We noted them beside the hearts on the IWB. They had to test how many sweets would fit into each heart after this and they wrote the number underneath the heart. We compared answers with estimates.

Art: Jim Dine Hearts:
We looked at some examples of Jim Dine's heart art and talked about the colours he used. We discussed words to describe the marks he used and the shapes of the colour blocks. They drew a big heart on a piece of paper. They coloured inside the heart with warm colours (using similar shapes) and outside the heart with cool colours. They then painted the pictures with a little olive oil to create a stained glass effect. I blotted them before leaving them to dry. When they had dried I added black paper borders (using mounting paper that I had measured and cut into a border with a blade). I rolled them up and tied them with a ribbon. I attached a little heart shaped pink notelet to the ribbon on which they wrote a message (to their Mum or Dad). Note: This lesson was completed earlier in the week so they could be brought home for Valentine's Day. 

Religion/History: The Story of St. Valentine
We looked at this video and talked about it afterwards. They each recreated a scene from the story on a piece of paper. I selected some pictures to display alongside sentences I had written about the story, on the wall.

Geography: Italy
While I did not teach a lesson on Italy (I had already covered some aspects of Italian culture under another topic), this would be a nice geography lesson to teach on a Valentine's themed day, especially you try to link it to the story of St. Valentine.

Happy Valentine's Day!

No comments:

Post a Comment