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There is much more to explore in our calendar. Find other important events in literary history, authors' birthdays, and a variety of holidays, each with related lessons and resources.

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HomeClassroom ResourcesCalendar Activities

February 14

Valentine's Day is today!

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Valentine's Day is today!

Grades 3 – 12
Calendar Activity Type Holiday & School Celebration

 

EVENT DESCRIPTION

 

 

Like many holidays, Valentine's Day arose from a confluence of Christian and pagan themes. Originally it was the occasion of a pagan Roman rite called the Lupercalia, on which young men and women were matched by drawing lots. In the fifth century, the Church changed the emphasis of the festival by making it the commemoration of a Christian priest named Valentine, martyred on this day in 289. Nevertheless, the day's association with romantic love persisted.

 

CLASSROOM ACTIVITY

 

 

This would be a great day for students to practice their skills in using poetic devices. Have students find examples of each type of figurative language below, and then write an original example using each device, each time employing the word love:

  • Simile: Love is like an ocean rolling over me.

  • Metaphor: Love is a tree with many branches.

  • Personification: Love whispers in your ear.

  • Rhyme: Love sure can stink/Anyone in it might be a fink.

  • Alliteration: Love lightly leaps.

When they have finished, students can illustrate their examples, share them with the class, and post them around the room.

 

WEBSITES

 

 
  • Theme Poems

    This ReadWriteThink interactive tool allows students to create poems about selected themes. For Valentine's Day, they can select a heart from the Celebrations theme.

     

  • Figurative Language

    This page includes definitions of several types of figurative language, including idioms, onomatopoeia, and alliteration.

     

  • Today in History: Valentine's Day

    This resource, from the Library of Congress, explores possible origins of Valentine's Day traditions. Related Library of Congress resources, such as music and photographs, are included.

     

  • Eye on Idioms

    This interactive resource focuses on idioms and accompanies the ReadWriteThink lesson plan Figurative Language: Teaching Idioms.

     

RELATED RESOURCES

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Grades   3 – 5  |  Lesson Plan  |  Standard Lesson

Theme Poems: Writing Extraordinary Poems About Ordinary Objects

Students select a familiar object online, build a bank of words related to the object, and write theme poems that are printed and displayed in class.

 

Grades   3 – 5  |  Lesson Plan  |  Standard Lesson

Figurative Language Awards Ceremony

Students will be as happy as clams when they have the chance to nominate their favorite examples of similes, metaphors, and personification for a figurative language award.

 

Grades   3 – 5  |  Lesson Plan  |  Standard Lesson

Figurative Language: Teaching Idioms

It's raining cats and dogs! Students explore figurative language through read-alouds, teacher modeling, and student-centered activities, further developing their understanding of the literal versus the metaphorical translations of idioms.

 

Grades   4 – 8  |  Lesson Plan  |  Standard Lesson

Lonely as a Cloud: Using Poetry to Understand Similes

Students identify similes in poetry and gain experience in using similes as a poetic device in their own work.

 

Grades   3 – 5  |  Lesson Plan  |  Standard Lesson

Dancing Minds and Shouting Smiles: Teaching Personification Through Poetry

Students learn about personification by reading and discussing poems and then brainstorm nouns and verbs to create personification in their own poems.

 

Grades   9 – 12  |  Lesson Plan  |  Minilesson

Onomatopoeia: A Figurative Language Minilesson

Clang, clash, or tinkle? Students explore the use of onomatopoeia in Edgar Allan Poe's “The Bells” before choosing their own sound words in response to specific sounds.

 

Grades   9 – 12  |  Lesson Plan  |  Standard Lesson

Finding Poetry in Prose: Reading and Writing Love Poems

After reading several poems that expand the definition of love poetry, students compose found poems based on a personal memoir—either their own or a love story of another writer.