Valentine’s Day is coming up soon! It’s always one of my favorite holidays to teach about since there are a lot of topics to talk about and a pretty good amount of resources. Pretty much anything related to love will work as a Valentine’s Day activity!
Here are some of my ideas for this year:
Click here to download a reading about the history of Valentine’s Day. It’s probably best for intermediate level students or higher, but you can feel free to edit the document to make the language simpler if you’d like.
MovieTalk is one of my favorite ways to provide comprehensible input to my students. (If you’re not familiar with MovieTalk, check out this post from Martina Bex.) Here are a few videos you could use for a love-themed MovieTalk:
- “Paperman”—A cute, funny video about a man and woman who are destined to be together. Key vocabulary: throws, makes, paper airplane, sees, looks for
- “Cecilia the Balcony Girl”—A funny video about a man who tries to impress a beautiful woman but later realizes that his attempts were futile. If you know Spanish or French, you can take a look at Mike Coxon’s resources. And you can watch a video of Blaine Ray doing the MovieTalk with students in Spanish here. Key vocabulary: lifts weights, tries to lift, imagines, kisses, falls down
- “Taking the Plunge”—A video about a man who is about to propose to his girlfriend, but he accidentally drops the engagement ring into the ocean. Key vocabulary: has, is going to ask her to marry him, ring, falls down, looks for, wants
- Valentine’s Day Google Doodle—A boy keeps trying to impress a girl with gifts, but she’s not interested—until he stops giving gifts and starts spending time with her. If you know Spanish, you can get ideas from some of Elena López’s resources here. Key vocabulary: gives, doesn’t want/like, jumps rope, likes, is happy, smiles, hugs
- “My Alien Valentine”–An alien comes to Earth on Valentine’s Day.
Listening to music is always fun, especially on a holiday. And it’s pretty easy to find songs that fit the Valentine’s Day theme since pretty much every song ever made is a love song. I’ll probably use the song “Just the Way You Are” by Bruno Mars. I like this song because the vocabulary is fairly simple (at least in comparison to most songs). And Sara Broussard has made this free embedded reading/cloze lyrics activity, which will help make the song a lot more understandable for lower-level students.
When listening to music, I often follow these steps: First, students listen to the song while watching the music video. Then, I pass out a cloze sheet with the lyrics of the song. I play the song two more times, and they fill in the missing words on their papers. Then we go over the answers. Finally, they listen again one more time. I tell them they can choose if they want to look at the lyrics on their papers or look up at the screen to watch the video again. If you want some other ideas for song activities, Martina Bex has a list on her blog.
UPDATE: I also created this free resource called “Romantic World Records.” Students work together in groups to guess the correct answers to world records, like the longest kiss ever and the longest marriage ever.
Happy Valentine’s Day!