Tales of a Room-Mom on Valentine’s Day

Posted by Kathy Torrence on Feb 13, 2007 in Crafts |

Tomorrow is Valentine’s Day and I have my hands full! I am the room mom (or is it ‘room parent’ or ‘room coordinator’ to be politically correct – don’t want to offend anyone) for my son’s second grade class and I am also responsible for the Valentine’s Day party for my daughter’s 4 year old preschool class. So I needed some QUICK, EASY craft ideas – as fast as possible!

I scoured the web and came up with a few – thought I’d share them with you so that a) if you are a room parent, I can help to easy your panic and b) so that next year when I am in the same panic, I can look back and remember what I did last year.

Here are the goody bags for my daughter’s class:

These are just really simple Chinese food containers from Michaels. I was going to stamp on them, but then I realized that I would have to take them apart and since I’m short on time (and slightly lazy) – I didn’t want to do that. So…after I filled and assembled the boxes, I just took my heat gun to some sheets of craft foam and pressed a heart stamp into it while it was still hot. The result was an embossed heart that I cut out and on which I stamped a little saying:

I tied them with some fun fur in pink, purple and red. The purple hearts are for the boys and the pink ones are for the girls.

As a craft for the 4 year old class, I decided to do a variation on a project I did last year at a church fundraiser. We just took those plain, red heart boxes that were available at Target last year and I let the kids decorate them with doilies, gems, foam hearts, buttons, stickers, marabou feathers…whatever they’d like. Here’s an example (not my finest craft work, but think like a 4 year old):

What I thought we could do is have the kids make a box of chocolates for their parents or another someone special. We’ll take some Hershey Nuggets and cover them with some pre-stamped address labels. I figured the kids will be able to peel and attach the labels after decorating their boxes. Quick and easy, right?

Speaking of which, here are two more really quick craft ideas for that age group.

The first is a simple pencil topper. Just take a pipe cleaner (now known as a ‘chenille stem’) and stick one end through a foam heart (about an inch – these go through really easily – no need to punch a hole). Wrap it around itself then take the other end and wrap it around a pencil. Pull it up so that the heart sticks out above the pencil and that’s it:

The kids could also decorate the heart if they want. You thought that was easy – this one’s even easier…

Take a pipe cleaner and put both ends through a foam heart. Put it over your finger and twist both ends behind. Trim off any excess and you have a super-easy ring!

I didn’t decorate mine because I think I have enough crafts and won’t need this one, but the kids could certainly jazz it up a bit and decorate it. How easy is that!

Another easy craft that I found is a little gum guy. These have been around for a while – it’s such a simple and inexpensive little craft – and I think they are cute too!

Take two sticks of gum (still in the wrappers) and put 2 pipe cleaners between them to be the arms and legs. Stick the gum sticks together with double sided tape and you have the body. Bend the arms and legs however you’d like . Then I took a little wooden heart shape and used some self-stick googly eyes and drew on a mouth. Then the kids can decorate the body (I just attached two more wooden hearts)…

You could also add some hair or buttons or a hat…I just kept the sample simple (again, not my best craft work, but pretend you’re 4 or 7 and work with me here…).

I think I’m going to use that craft for both classes – it’s cute and simple.

The 7 year olds are also going to decorate a bag to hold their valentines. I bought some plain red, pink and white bags and will let the kids use marabou feathers, yarn, foam hearts, stickers, doilies…whatever they’d like.

Simple and easy, right?

One other craft idea I found but don’t think I’m going to use is a little clothespin doll magnet.

You’re supposed to draw a face and shoes and add a heart to the front and some yarn for hair on the top. Then you put a magnet on the back…

I can’t help but think she looks like a little flasher, naked behind the heart! Maybe someone else can come up with a variation that looks better, but I’m all out of ideas for now and don’t need another craft this year.

In fact, for my son’s class, I actually bought pre-printed little plastic goody bags – GASP! And I also am using STORE-BOUGHT cookies and cupcakes – my oven is still on the fritz (and I’m not in a hurry to get it fixed, either).

And…even worse – I’m ashamed to say – I didn’t hand-make the Valentines for my kids to exchange this year. I bought some from Friendly’s that benefit the Easter Seals – each is good for a free ice-cream cone. Sorry, but I figured since I have two parties plus a stamp club meeting (where we’re doing a shoebox swap) on Valentine’s Day, I have certainly done enough creative thinking… :)

And on a ‘menopausal moment’ note…I planned on playing a game with the kids where we use conversation hearts flipped upside down and then the kids try to find the matches by turning them over. I bought about 6 small boxes of conversation hearts at AC Moore, but realized that I might need more to find enough that match. So I rushed into Target, grabbed eight more boxes and checked out. So…I’m sitting here trying to find colors and sayings that match and I can find very few in the first 6 boxes. So I grabbed the others and dumped them out. I kept looking at the words thinking that they really didn’t look right…that’s because they are in SPANISH! I bought Spanish conversation hearts! Oh well – I’m sure they’ll taste the same…but there goes that great idea for a game…

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[…] held my son Matt’s second grade Valentine party on Thursday and they LOVED the crafts (see my previous post) – especially the little ‘gum guys’ – that was a real hit with the kids!  But of […]


 

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