## Valentine’s Day + Math = Fun

Valentine’s Day is just around the corner, and no doubt your local drug stores, grocery stores, and card stores are decorated with hearts and cupids.  Children love this holiday and often schools even have parties in honor of the day.  Valentine’s Day math worksheets capitalize on children’s excitement about Valentine’s Day.  Cute illustrations symbolic of this holiday add to the fun of the worksheets, which provide practice with several math skills including counting, creating and reading pictographs and bar graphs, sorting and classifying, and patterning.

There are also fun activities you can try at home today with your little Valentine:

• A lot of sorting opportunities are presented with a bowlful of small conversation hearts.  Ask your child to declare the attributes she is using to sort them - color, identical saying, ink color of the words, or even whole hearts vs. chipped or broken hearts.  After she sorts one bowlful of hearts, give her another small bowlful and ask her to sort them in another way using different attributes.
• Assist your child in creating his own Valentine’s Day graph.  Some questions he can pose to family and friends may include:  Do you like Valentine’s Day? or What is your favorite part of Valentine’s Day?  Possible answers to this question could be:  candy, cards, a special dinner or valentine decorations.  Help your child write the word or draw a representative picture under each column on the graphing page to assist him as he conducts his poll.
• Valentine’s Day naturally lends itself to counting activities.  Your child can count the amount of valentines she collects or the number of candy hearts in a bowl.  You can extend this activity by placing the small hearts in a clear glass or jar and asking your child to guess or estimate how many are in the jar before she counts them.
• Valentine’s Day also means lots of cute cards and fun candy.  Those little candy hearts with messages (that don’t melt in tiny hands!) and the adorable cards that children pass out on this special day provide opportunities for math skills practice.  Nicely, the cards and candy are inexpensive and not difficult to find, so you can easily engage your child in the following activities.  She will have so much fun she won’t even realize she is learning!

Have a wonderful day with the special little ones in your life!