Monday, January 23, 2012

Valentine's Day Craft Idea part 1

Kids love to exchange Valentine's at school, so I think it would be the same way at homeschool. It's fun to give and receive these little treats from friends. Your child can give valentines to their homeschool group friends, their friends at gymnastics or dance or whatever activities they are involved in, they can even give them to their cousins or siblings.

I know that many of you think it's much easier to go the store and buy a bulk pack of valentines. You're right, it is so much easier. But it's also boring! It is worth it to take a little time and plan an activity that your homeschooled child will love to do.

Almost all of our activities serve a double purpose. For one, we have fun doing a craft, something creative and handmade. Second, I like to incorporate a little hidden learning. Since we are making little cards to attach to our gift, my daughter uses a ruler to measure a square on the card stock. She uses age appropriate scissors to cut out the square.

Here is a Valentine's Day idea that serves both those purposes with the added bonus that your child can then give these to the people she loves.

First, you need to figure out how many you want to make. That will dictate how much you need to purchase .

We are going to be making chocolate covered pretzel rods. My kids are pros at making these, since we make them for almost every occasion. They are so easy to make and are a great gift!

Chocolate covered Pretzel rods
What you'll need:
- 1 bag of pretzel rods
- 1 bag of chocolate candy (from the craft store). You will need more if you want to make them in different colors. I will make them using milk chocolate.
- Sprinkles (jimmies) in red, pink, white. The craft store has these already prepackaged together.
- 1 pack of small lollipop bags (also found in the candy making section of the craft store)
- ribbon (to tie the bags. I use Christmas type ribbons, you can choose the color) I will use red
- red card stock


Set up your work area in the kitchen. Place foil on a cookie sheet. Melt your chocolate according to the instructions. Dip your pretzel into the melted chocolate about half way, shake off any excess. Place the pretzel on the cookie sheet and have your child put the sprinkles over the chocolate to decorate. Do this one at a time, otherwise the chocolate will dry on the pretzel and the sprinkles won't stick. When your tray is full, place it in the fridge for about 10 minutes to set. Remove from fridge, carefully take the pretzel off the foil and place in a bag. Tie the bag with ribbon, place the card through one of the ribbons, tie it again and curl the ribbon with scissors (parents do this).

To make the card:
Cut the card stock into small squares. Let your child write a short message on one side, then hole punch it to secure it to the ribbon later. Kids can also decorate the cards.

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