3 Valentine’s Day Lesson Plans for High School Students - Celebrating Secondary (2024)

3 Valentine’s Day Lesson Plans for High School Students - Celebrating Secondary (1)

I know that I may be in the minority in this, but Valentine’s Day is my FAVORITE holiday. That’s why it is so important to me to have some creative Valentine’s Day Lesson Plans for High School Students in my classroom. Everyone should feel the love! When I hear my students groaning and complaining about how much they dislike Valentine’s Day, it makes me SO SAD. I think that everyone should use the holiday as a chance to show love toward friends and family – not just a significant other. Also, I AM A FIRM BELIEVER IN CANDY. Any opportunity to pop some bon-bons and kill a bag of pink and red M&Ms is FINE with me.

All students deserve a little love, lightheartedness, and CANDY on this day, so I’ve come up with the perfect solution with the Valentine’s Day activities for the classroom that I’ve tried over the years.

Sometimes it’s difficult to incorporate fun Valentine’s Day lessons into the ELA classroom without sacrificing the ELA standards. Check out my top 3 favorite ways to celebrate the day of love while still covering all of the important English reading and writing staples!

1. Defending an argument: Is it true love or lucrative business?

  1. My students always have very intense feelings about if Valentine’s Day is a “real” holiday or just a made-up day for retailers to make more money. I like to have my high school students celebrate Valentine’s Day by learning about the real history behind the holiday. Some of my favorite resources to use are:
    The History’s Channel’s history of St. Valentine
    The Dark Origins of Valentine’s Day from NPRI take the opportunity to practice ELA skills before, during, and after reading such as:
    – Using textual evidence to support an argument
    – Identifying text structure + author’s purpose
    – Analyzing bias
    – Writing about rhetorical strategies

    I’ve even put together a resource here to teach my students about the history of the holiday, objections to celebrating it, AND how we can spread love year-round – not just on one day out of the whole year. I’ve also added some fun stories on the history of a popular Valentine’s Day candy. Students will see 10 multiple choice questions and one question. I also added a vocabulary practice and 5 pre-reading questions to get my students thinking about the text as well as their own lives.

2. Creating a Character’s Dating Profile

3 Valentine’s Day Lesson Plans for High School Students - Celebrating Secondary (3)

I absolutely love activities that you can use with any text! Creating a character dating profile is one of my all-time favorite Valentine’s Day lesson plans for high school students! It’s a no-prep activity for English class that keeps students focused on the standards while still having FUN! They’ll simply choose a character from the work that you’re studying and pretend like the character is looking for a mate on a dating website. It’s SO FUNNY to see the things that students come up with. The creative options are endless, and students have to use inferences as well as direct characterization from the text to make their dating profile for a chosen character. I’ve even made a bulletin board out of these once all of my students have finished. I especially love seeing the Snapchat usernames and Instagram handles that they make for their character.

P.S. I send out a free copy of this assignment to all of my email subscribers every February! You can grab the link to get on that list here!

3. Using a Valentine’s Day-themed Station Rotation Activity

3 Valentine’s Day Lesson Plans for High School Students - Celebrating Secondary (4)

I absolutely love using stations in the high school English classroom. It breaks up the monotony and adds some much needed movement – especially if you’re like me and have 90 minute class periods. Whew! I use these stations every year for Valentine’s Day lesson plans for high school students.

Station 1: T Swift + Love Poems
Read “What Love Isn’t” by Yrsa Daley-Ward and “Clean” by Taylor Swift. Then, make a heart foldable which contains analysis questions about both pieces!

Station 2: Punny Valentines
Have your students use their literary element knowledge to create a valentine for a classmate or teacher! Literary valentines are a great way to help students practice what they’ve learned all semester long. I love to have my students use metaphors or personification to write a valentine to someone sweet, but puns have to be my favorite!

Station 3: Creative Writing Prompts

I realized that I spend so much time teaching my students how to write about the text that they are starved for the personal narrative! I use this opportunity to have my students work on creative prompts, personal narrative prompts, and more. I also like to give them famous quotes about love and have them dissect the quote or apply it to their own lives! There are SO many possibilities with Valentine’s Day writing prompts, you’re sure to find something they’ll LOVE.

Some of my other favorite options for Valentine’s Day in the classroom are:

  • Reading + responding to the short story, “Love” by William Maxwell – just make sure you have a box of tissues (or six) ready for the tears.
  • “Oranges” by Gary Soto is a great poem to use for Valentine’s Day in the classroom. It sparks a lot of conversation about how love is viewed as a child vs. as an adult. It’s also fun to discuss symbolism within the poem.

I’d love to hear what some of your favorite Valentine’s Day activities are to use in your classroom! Drop me a note and let me know how you celebrate my favorite holiday.

P.S. If you’re not already on my email list to get the free character dating profile activity in the month of February, you can sign up here! I send out a weekly newsletter with all sorts of fun lesson ideas, resources, and English teacher tips/tricks!

P.S.S. If you’re interested in more year-around/non-holiday classroom ideas, you can check out my top 5 favorite novels to teach that students actually LOVE reading HERE!


3 Valentine’s Day Lesson Plans for High School Students - Celebrating Secondary (2024)


What are the learning outcomes of Valentine's Day? ›

Learning Outcomes:

understand the history behind Valentine's Day; recognise what it means to show love, affection and gratitude; ● identify how important your relationships are.

What do you teach students about Valentine? ›

Teaching Kids About Love on Valentine's Day
  • The Golden Rule. Everyone learns the “Golden Rule” early in life: to treat others as you would like to be treated. ...
  • Love as Kindness. Random acts of kindness are not limited to friends and family. ...
  • The Love Between Family. ...
  • Accepting Everyone.
Feb 5, 2024

What do u do on Valentine's Day in school? ›

Secret Valentine: Have each student bring in a pre-made Valentine card for a secret Valentine. Have a drawing or use a randomizer to match up students. Valentine's Day party: Have a Valentine's Day party for the whole school where students can decorate cookies or cupcakes, play games, and exchange small gifts.

What are 3 facts about Valentine's day? ›

10 Fun Facts about Valentine's Day
  • Over 8 billion candy hearts are produced for Valentine's Day every year! ...
  • Nearly 250 million roses are grown in preparation for Valentine's Day each year.
  • According to the National Retail Foundation, Americans spent nearly $26 billion on Valentine's Day gifts in 2023.
Feb 14, 2024

What are three Valentine's day symbols you learned about today? ›

But how did hearts, arrows, and roses come to reflect Valentine's Day in the first place? Let's explore the origins and meanings of these and other Valentine's Day symbols, which are as varied as a heart-shaped box of assorted chocolates.

How do you explain why Valentine's day is important? ›

Valentine's day focuses on the importance of caring for one another and reminds people how giving love impacts how you feel positively. Showing appreciation and love should, of course, be done throughout the year, but Valentine's Day reinforces this and reminds people to put effort into their relationships.

What does Valentine's day teach children? ›

Valentine's Day is about showing our appreciation for the people who matter to us, and letting them know how important they are to our lives. It's important to teach kids about showing appreciation and valuing others – and what better time to reinforce this message than on Valentine's Day.

What is the theme of Valentine's Day? ›

Love is the only theme of valentine's Day. It is the exchange of love between two loved ones. Valentine's Day is the day of romance. People believe that it is the day in which two people are coupled up together.

What are the steps of Valentine's Day? ›

A Memorable Valentine's Day in 5 Steps
  • GET STARTED EARLY. It might sound obvious, but it's true. ...
  • MASTER THE GREAT BALANCING ACT. Regardless of how your other half feels about Valentine's Day, you're caught in the crosshairs. ...
Jan 18, 2024

What is code Valentine at school? ›

The “Code Valentine” signal will be made anytime a person on campus is in need of emergency services such as cardiac arrest or symptoms where the Code Valentine/First Responder Team may be needed. Teachers serving on the Code Valentine Team should include members of the First Responder Team.

What should a 14 year old do on Valentine's Day? ›

Valentine's Day Date Ideas For Teens
  • Movie. Watching a movie together with your love is one of the best first Valentine's date ideas. ...
  • Go for a picnic. ...
  • Go for a sporting event. ...
  • Theme party. ...
  • Dinner date. ...
  • Coffee. ...
  • Visit a concert. ...
  • Indoor plan.

How do you pass out Valentines in class? ›

Here are a few tips for passing out valentines in the classroom:
  1. Recommend that students don't put specific "To" names on the cards. ...
  2. Have students decorate a bag or box for students to drop cards in quickly. ...
  3. Students should set their "mailbox" on their table before handing out valentines.

What is the purpose of the Valentine's day? ›

The day was commemorated for martyred saints named—you guessed it—Valentine. Differing legends celebrate three different saints called Valentine or Valentinus, but since very little was known about these men and there were conflicting reports of the St.

What is one interesting or surprising thing you learned about Valentine's day? ›

Valentine's Day wasn't romantic until the Middle Ages.

In medieval times, it was common wisdom that birds began mating in mid-February, specifically on the 14th, aka St. Valentine's Day.


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