Hidden Message Valentine Mystery Worksheet

Jacob was such a fan of the Secret Agent Valentine I designed for him, that I thought I’d use a similar concept to come up with an activity for Evan’s class Valentine’s Day party.

I created a series of worksheets where the kids get to tap into their inner Secret Agent and are challenged with the task to find Cupid’s stolen arrows. Using some of our favorite Love/Heart/Valentine’s Day themed books, the kids dive into the stories a bit deeper to investigate clues, decode messages and figure out who the Arrow Thief is.

Supplies needed:

  1. Hidden Message Valentines Mystery Printable Worksheet
  2. Secret Agent Pens
  3. Secret Decoder Screen
  4. Dragons Love Tacos by Adam Rubin
  5. The Day it Rained Hearts by Felicia Bond
  6. In My Heart by Jo Witek
    *Check your local library.

What do you think, Secret Agent? Can you solve the Valentine’s mystery?

Like the idea but want to use a different selection of books or make changes to the worksheet? Contact me through my Etsy shop and I’m happy to work with you to create a custom mystery experience.

Have a spy-tastic Valentine’s Day!

“Mystery creates wonder and wonder is the basis of man’s desire to understand.”
– Neil Armstrong

Video Game Valentine

Video Game Valentine Banner

My little gamer, Evan, is currently obsessed with Mario Odyssey. Well, anything Mario actually. He’s read the Mario Encyclopedia from front to back several times and – whether he’s played a particular game or not – can shoot off statistics and level details like nobody’s business.

Needless to say, he was super pumped when I suggested Mario themed Valentines so I showed him two cute favor options from Amazon:

  1. Magnetic Bookmarks
  2. Backpack Charms / Zipper Pulls

Evan preferred the bookmarks, so we went with those. A video game theme with the balance to encourage reading – I like it!ย  ๐Ÿ™‚ We came up with a Mario-themed twist on the classic Valentine’s poem (Evan of course had no problem choosing something ‘red’ and ‘blue’) and now he’s ready for his classroom Valentine’s Day party!

Click on below image or HERE to purchase the Video Game Valentine from my Etsy Shop.

Video Game Valentine PIP

 

Secret Agent Valentine

Secret Agent Valentine Banner

Jacob received an Invisible Ink Secret Agent Pen for Christmas and has been using it all the time (mostly to write the word “poop” and giggle about it). He thought it would be fun to give his classmates one for Valentine’s Day, so we created these spy themed valentines – because who doesn’t love decoding top secret messages?

Secret Agent Valentine - PIP.jpg

Use the Secret Agent Pen‘s UV light to reveal who the valentine is from and decode the mission.

Secret Decoder Message - PIP.jpg

To create your own, simply print out the Secret Agent Valentine (front and back), attach the Secret Agent Pen (with washi tape or something similar) – Mission Complete!

Related Posts:
DIY Mermaid Valentine Printable - Mermaid Valentine's Day Card

Check out more of my DIY Valentines HERE.

 

New Year’s Eve Activity Sheet

As a simple New Year’s Eve activity for the kids, I created this printable activity sheet. Similar to a restaurant kids menu, I thought they can work on this at dinner. Figured it will give them a holiday themed challenge, as well as some fun topics to discuss. ๐Ÿ™‚

New Years Eve Printable Thumbnail

Click on above image or HERE to download free printable.

Happy New Year!

โ€œTomorrow, is the first blank page of a 365 page book. Write a good one.โ€ โ€• Brad Paisley

Christmas Tree Yarn Craft

Christmas Tree Yarn Craft FREE Printable - projectsinparenting.com

My kids recently made a God’s Eye craft and enjoyed it so much, they asked to do “more things with yarn.”

‘Tis the season – so I came up with this quick and easy Christmas Tree Yarn Craft.

Things you will need:
FREE Printable
Screw Hole Punch (or a 1-hole paper punch)
Yarn (ideally green)
Scissors
Tape
Star Stickers (I used chip board glitter stickers I found at my local craft store – Here is a similar Amazon alternative or this one)
Cutting Mat (if using Screw Hole Punch)

STEP ONE:
Print template – FREE Printable here.

STEP TWO:
Punch holes where gray dots are on the template. If you are using a 1-hole paper punch you will need to cut around the tree silhouette leaving just enough space to reach with your hole puncher.

STEP THREE:
Prep yarn string sections (approximately 2-3 feet each, for easy kid-handling) by tying a knot at one end and wrapping the other end with a piece of tape (this helps to feed the yarn through the holes).

STEP FOUR:
Starting with the knotted end in back, feed yarn through the holes to create yarn tree. NOTE: I used several sections of yarn to complete the entire Christmas tree. After each section runs out and you can’t feed any more of the section through, tie the loose/taped-end in back, so that the tree does not unravel.

STEP FIVE:
Top with star sticker…. And if you’re inspired to get creative – feel free to color it and add your own personal touch like Avery did.

STEP SIX:
Have a Merry Christmas!!ย ย  ๐ŸŽ„

“The best of all gifts around any Christmas tree is the presence of a happy family all wrapped up in each other.” -Burton Hillis

Related Post: Jingle Bells and We Wish You a Merry Christmas Color-Coded Piano
Related Post: Stained Glass Sun Catcher Ornament

Super Simple Snowflake Sticker Craft

Super Simple Snowflake Sticker Craft - projectsinparenting.com

Last year I hosted a Christmas party with 12 kids. How did I keep that many little ones occupied with a craft that didn’t end up with a huge mess?? — STICKERS!

Using only these cute foam snowflakes and rhinestone gems from Amazon, each kid was able to create their own shimmering piece of art! (Individual gem packs are usually available at your local craft store)

This year, I still had left over snowflakes and rhinestone stickers, so we combined them with some glitter glue for a little extra sparkle!

Super Simple Snowflake Sticker Craft - projectsinparenting.com

With a little bit of water, these snowflakes also stick great on glass / windows. The kids love wetting them down the back and playing with them on our sliding glass patio door. ๐Ÿ™‚

“We are like a snowflake all different in our own beautiful way”

Room on the Broom Inspired Scavenger Hunt

Room on the Broom Inspired Scavenger Hunt

A family friend bought us a copy of Room on the Broom last year and the boys could not get enough. They wanted to read it over and over again – for MONTHS!! And they still love to read it. The book is extremely clever with captivating illustrations and super catchy rhymes. Since they loved the book so much, I also purchased the DVD (which is AMAZING as well – and great for bringing imagination to life). If you don’t own this book, I highly recommend adding it to your personal library.

room-on-the-broom

As we read the story or watch the DVD, the boys love pretending to throw items into the cauldron (lily, cone, stick, bone). Sometimes they come up with their own ingredients (acorns, leaves, etc.). I was looking at our Halloween candy bowl (which happens to be a witches cauldron) and came up with the idea for an activity to engage them in the story even more…

I created scavenger hunt cards with cauldron ingredients, printed them on card stock, and cut them out.

Download FREE Printable HERE.

Note: I chose the strength of card stock and reinforcement of laminating them with contact paper because Avery crumpled up the 1st set I printed on regular paper (which the boys were not very happy about) . I’m sure older children would handle regular paper or card stock just fine.

I then placed the scavenger hunt cards face down, onto a table, next to the witches cauldron. The boys took turns selecting a card, then running off to gather their ingredients (which were scattered on the ground or hidden in a separate room)… Great for burning off the incessant toddler energy!

DSC_0052

They tossed their ingredients into the cauldron and stirred them well…

Room on the Broom inspired scavenger hunt - Stir Cauldron

Room on the Broom inspired scavenger hunt - Stir Cauldron

For a fun twist on the game, I gave them each a glow stick wand (found at the dollar store)…

DSC_0092

…and had them find their items in the dark using the wand.

Room on the Broom inspired scavenger hunt - in the dark

Room on the Broom inspired scavenger hunt - in the dark

IGGITY, ZIGGITY, ZAGGITY, ZOOM!!!… Out rose 3 happy toddlers, entertained for hours!

Room on the Broom inspired scavenger hunt - Iggity Ziggity Zaggity Zoom

Follow me on Pinterest, for more fun ideas!