This Valentine’s Day, why don’t you try something different? Set aside the chocolates, flowers and colorful cards and see what’s inside your child’s heart. In this activity, your second grader will design her very own heart map to show what she’s really made of.
Begin by having your child draw a big heart in the center of a piece of white paper.
Ask your child what lives inside her heart. If your child needs more prompting, tell her that things like the people she loves, her cares, hopes, feelings, fears, and wishes can be components of her heart.
Once she gets the idea, have her start building her heart map using pencil first so she can make any changes as she goes along. She’ll decide how many pieces it will be made of and how big or small the pieces will be. She’ll need to label each piece and give an example in words, pictures or both. For instance, she might have a piece labeled My Heroes and underneath she might write: my mother, my best friend Jocelyn, Martin Luther King, Jr. Encourage your child to also get in touch with the not-so-good feelings that live inside her heart like: Things That Scare Me or What Frustrates Me.
When your child is done building her map, have her add color to make it pop. Hang it up and enjoy this really special heart this Valentine’s Day!
Vanessa Genova DeSantis has been teaching for fourteen years in public and private school settings in grades 4-8. She's also an educational freelance writer as well as a private tutor for elementary, middle and high school students.