5 Valentine's Day Activities for Secondary ELA

5 Valentine's Day Activities for Secondary ELA

With Valentine’s Day right around the corner, it is time to start planning engaging ELA activities for your middle school and high school classroom. Here is a look at several Valentine’s Day-themed activities and resources for the secondary ELA classroom.

1. Valentine’s Day Sentence Combining

Beginning on February 1, you can incorporate Valentine’s Day themes in your classroom with these Valentine’s Day Sentence Combining Bell Ringers.

I love using sentence combining as a bell-ringer activity because this exercise provides students with an opportunity to think critically about their writing. Students will craft complex and compound-complex sentences from a series of Valentine’s Day-themes simple sentences.

To make this activity more engaging, I like to have little challenges in my classroom. I’ll ask students to include all of the provided information, but be as concise as possible. Or, I will ask them to begin their sentence with an adjective phrase to focus on that skill.
Valentine's Day Sentence Combining Activity
Valentine’s Day Sentence Combining Bell Ringers

2. Extended Simile Love Letter

Teenagers either love or hate Valentine’s Day. There really is no middle ground. One great way to capture this strong emotion is to have students write an extended simile love letter.

For this activity, explain to students what an extended simile is. And trust me on this one, students struggle with the extended part of the extended simile. This activity will require quite a bit of creative thinking.

For the extended simile love letter, students will write an extended simile about love. The extended simile should be at least five lines long, and the simile needs to carry throughout the entire simile.

Love is like a traffic cone
Sometimes it stops you from making unsafe turns
Other times, you don’t see it coming, and it suddenly hits you
You also might steal it because someone dares you to
That never ends well


To help students really capture the essence of the extended simile, you can have students create their poems in Canva and include graphics to accompany their poems.

3. Figurative Langauge Valentine’s Day Cards

Have I told you that I love using Canva in the classroom? Well, I do, and here is another activity you can use. For a class period, have students create figurative language Valentine’s Day cards in Canva. They can create their cards on an 8.5x11 inch design, and include four different Valentine’s Day cards on the page.

Each Valentine’s Day card must include puns or figurative language and related graphics. Here are a couple examples of punny digital Valentine's Day cards students can make! The possibilities are endless!
  1. I love you a latte
  2. My heart beets for you
  3. You stole a pizza my heart
  4. We are butter together

While many students will more than likely look up these puns or uses of figurative language, having students create cards with these puns, reinforces these language skills in the students.
Use Canva to have students design punny Valentine's Day messages

4. Secondary ELA Valentine’s Day Activities

If Valentine’s Day seems to sneak up on you, or if you need an easy, no-prep activity to help fill the day, I’ve also got you covered. My Secondary ELA Valentine’s Day Activities packet has a few clever activities for your students to complete. I also have this resource available in a digital format for online and 1:1 learning.

My favorite activity from this resource is the character online dating profile. This activity is so much fun, and it integrates perfectly with the novel you are currently reading in your classroom!
Valentine's Day Activities for Big Kids
 Secondary ELA Valentine’s Day Activities

5. Valentine’s Day Debate

Students love researching facts for debate. In this activity, you’ll place students into two groups. Students within each group will work together to form arguments to support their side of the debate: Is Valentine’s Day a romantic holiday or a byproduct of commercialism?

Instruct each group to come up with three strong points supporting their argument. Students should have valid, reliable research to support each point. You’ll also want to have each group come up with a counterargument.

After providing students with time to research in class, host a brief classroom debate where volunteers from each team come to the front of the classroom to debate if Valentine’s Day is a romantic holiday or a byproduct of commercialism.

For more Valentine's Day activities and lesson plans, check out this blog post about more Valentine's Day activities for secondary ELA. 
5 Valentine's Day Activities for Secondary ELA