Valentine'​s Day crafts for toddlers

Valentine's Day is a wonderful opportunity to show toddlers how they can express their love for friends and families.  

Learning Stages


By Candace Lindemann

Children's Author & Education Consultant

Candace Lindemann is a published children’s writer and educational consultant. She holds a B.A. from Yale University and an M.Ed. from the Harvard Graduate School of Education. You can also find Candace blogging at http://NaturallyEducational.com. While Candace’s degrees prepared her for a career in education, she’s found that the best preparation for parenting is on-the-job training.

Valentine's Day is a wonderful opportunity to show toddlers how they can express their love for friends and families.  We made a simple craft with my son's hand prints to give to his grandparents. All you need is paint, paper, and a pair of little hands.

  1. Dip the toddler's hands in some paint.
  2. Press hands on the paper, touching the thumbs and index fingers to form a heart shape.
  3. Lift hands to reveal the heart.
  4. Add text and, if you want, a heart sticker.

After we made ours, we saw the same hand print heart craft at Rosy ~ Posy and loved her idea of adding glitter and using stamps to address the cards.

Toddlers as young as 18 months may enjoy craft activities. Keep it simple, keep it short, and keep it fun and they'll be coming back for more crafts as they grow!

Other toddler and preschooler-friendly Valentine's craft activities:

Crayon Hearts (Frugal Family Fun Blog): These are perfect party favors or inexpensive Valentine's for class gifts.

Heart Sun Catchers: My Montessori Journey uses two sheets of contact paper to make Heart Sun Catchers and Twig and Toadstool uses card stock frames for their Hanging Hearts.

Heart Animals: At Naturally Educational, we made Barn Owls from hearts.  Meet the Dubiens has a Love Bird. You could make a cute kitty, show your puppy love, or craft a friendly fish--there is no limit to what animals you can make from heart shapes.

Red and Pink Flower Wreath (Hands On, As We Grow): This craft uses tissue paper flowers to create a pretty wreath.

Queen of Hearts Craft and Count: Over at No Time for Flashcards there's a fun heart garland that also makes a great mathematics activity.

Color Mixing Hearts (Art Projects for Kids): This art teacher used heart shapes for an elementary lesson in color mixing.  To modify for toddlers, you can mix just red and blue.

Heart Bean Bags (Make and Takes): A few seconds with a glue gun and you'll have a prop for hours of fun for your toddler. Play hide and go seek, throw and catch the bean bag, try to balance the bean bag on your head, attempt to toss the bean bag into a laundry basket, or place the bean bag on a tiled floor and count the number of tiles you must hop to get there.

Heart Ornaments: Preschoolers can practice fine motor skills and make a beautiful yarn-wrapped heart ornament (Family Chic).  At Naturally Educational we used beads and chenille stems to make Beaded Heart Ornaments--modify for toddlers by omitting the second strand of smaller beads.

Valentine's Ice Art (Twig and Toadstool) - Those celebrating in colder weather can add some warmth to the frozen outdoors with these beautiful Valentine's Ice Medallions.

Heart Bird Treats: Young children enjoy watching the wildlife.  Since it is National Bird Feeding Month, show some love for our fine feathered friends with this heart birdseed cake (The Magic Onions) or this popcorn heart wreath (Ordinary Live Magic).