Sunday, February 10, 2013

Burying the Alleluia, St. Valentine

Today was a busy day in my first grade class.  We first changed our prayer table cloth to purple in preparation of Lent and added our crown of thorns.

We then put up our Alleluia sign to then take it down after our prayer.

I downloaded the free printable St. Valentine bookmarks from Sanctus Simplicitus.  
Thank you CeAnne!

She has two different types of bookmarks as well as holy cards of St. Valentine.

 Our craft for the day was the St. Valentine Love Banner which includes scripture verses of God's love for us and our call to love others.  

Here are some close ups of the St. Valentine Love Banner.

As you can tell, I did a lot of prep work since our class time is limited.
I printed out the verses and then traced a heart shape around them on 
pretty red, pink and purple paper.
I cut them all out before class.

I googled a picture of St. Valentine that I liked and used the same step as above. 

It looked pretty on our prayer table.

I had my students punch holes and then thread the yarn through their hearts.
They also decorated around their scripture verses with more sticker hearts.

I read this book to my class that I checked out of my local library:

Saint Valentine  -     
        By: Robert Sabuda

Here are a few treats I made for my students to take home:

I found these delightful Hershey Kiss stickers for Valentine's day at Amanda's Parties To Go.
She offers them as a free printable with many other options for various holidays.
Thank you Amanda!  Her blog is a feast for the eyes!
She also has an Etsy shop HERE with so many wonderful party printables.

I had noticed that she had treat toppers and I tried contacting her asking if it's possible to insert
a picture of St. Valentine onto the printable.  I didn't hear back so it spurred me on to try and
find a way to make one myself.
I came across a tutorial on how to make Hershey candy wrappers HERE and 
I stumbled through it and below is my result.  
I couldn't figure out how to remove the blue background but that's ok for my first attempt!

I love this mosaic picture of St. Valentine!

Here are the other library books I had for our quiet time reading for those
who finished their work.

I didn't put the candy on our table until close to the end of class.  
It would have been a definite distraction for sure!

I also downloaded the free Lenten Calendar printable from Catholic Icing.
Thank you Lacy!

Catholic Icing

Since we ran out of time, I sent home a coloring page of St. Valentine from Waltzing Matilda.  
Thank you Charlotte!
It was a busy and fun day for my class!  Thank you CeAnne from Sanctus SimplicitusAmanda from Amanda's Parties To GoLacy from Catholic Icing and Charlotte from Waltzing Matilda for your generosity in sharing your talents with your followers!  My students are blessed by your gifts.  Thank you!

St. Valentine, pray for us!
St. Scholastica, pray for us!

Linking up with Jennifer over at Catholic Inspired.



  1. Noreen,

    I am so impressed! You put so much work into your classes. I am thinking my own girls would enjoy doing some St Valentine's Day craft. I tend to forget the younger girls still like cutting and pasting and colouring in. Perhaps I can use some of these ideas.

    I remember when I was at school and Andy would leave valentine cards for me by my front door, without me seeing. He'd sneak into our glass covered entrance, drop his card and then hurry off down the road. "Be my valentine!"

    Noreen, I hope your valentine surrounds you with love on the 14th!

    1. I certainly did for this one Sue! There were so many wonderful ideas that I do go overboard :) I did see last night a sight that made valentine treats out of fruit. Maybe I'll use that for next year.
      Andy is so sweet to you! It's fantastic that your openly share your love for each other. Great modeling for your kids when it's time for them to choose their spouses.

  2. Noreen, you do such sweet things for your class! You are an amazing teacher!!! Wishing you a wonderful Valentine's Day!!!

    1. Thank you Valerie! I really enjoyed all the prep work.

  3. You are AWESOME!!!! These children are so lucky to have you! May your lenten journey be fruitful and that your love for Christ continue to shine onto others!

    1. Patty you are too kind! Thank you for your supportive comments :) I believe the parents of my students are happy too. Right before we leave the classroom, as they're lined up, I quiz them again about what we learned in class. I like them to have a tangible item to help explain to their families about the day's lessons. They're not theologians but they're getting the main idea.

    2. Noreen,

      I second Patty's words: you are awesome and your children are lucky to have you. You are making a real difference in their lives. God bless!

  4. I love all the stuff you did in your classroom! The St. Valentine book is one of our favorites, we will be reading it tomorrow. Love the chocolate bar idea :)

    1. Thanks Jen! I'm going to pop over and visit with you on your blog!

  5. Oh Noreen, everything is beautiful. I agree with the others here...Those precious children are blessed to have you! I especially love the book marks and candy wrappers:) I hope to pop over and print out a few of those book marks before Thursday and we love the St. Valentine book too! Did you make your crown of thorns? Praying your Lent is fruitful!

    1. Thank you Tiffany for your encouragement! Yes, I did make the crown of thorns by using a grape vine wreath and toothpicks. I painted my toothpicks brown to make it more realistic. Thinking of having my student make their own next week. Then have them remove one toothpick when they do a good deed.

  6. Noreen,

    I want to be in your first grade class! I love the way you mix the well-known aspects of the holiday with the lesser known ones (i.e., the fact that the holiday is really a saint's feast day!) How fun it would be to explore your prayer table and the other special little things you did to decorate the room.

    Thank you for stopping by my blog, and for recommending the Catholic Inspired Link-up!

    May you have a spiritually rich Lent season!


    1. You are very sweet Cheryl! We only have our students for a short time so I try and make it as meaningful and impactful as possible! I do send notes home to the parents explaining what we did in the class and I do ask them, to ask their child, what did you learn today?

  7. I don't know if my last message got saved... I didn't see any confirmation...
    anyway, I just wanted to say that you are an amazing catequist!! everything is so lovely!!

    1. Thank you Xhonane! You are an amazing catechist yourself!

  8. I wish my son had you for first grade.
    Just stopping by from Link up.
    God Bless,

  9. Oh my Gael, thank you for your kind words! I do so enjoy teaching first graders plus they're a great group of kids so it's a joy! I will come over to visit you:)

  10. I'm with Cheryl above -- I want to be in your class! I especially love the St. Valentine love banner. I'm a bookmark freak, too, so thanks for the hook-up. Good Lent to you!

    1. You are sweet too Regina! Do you mind if I "borrow" your bookmarks for my students?

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  12. I love how you pulled the "Saint" back into "Saint Valentine's Day"! Beautiful post - thanks for the great ideas. I definitely like the chocolate bars.

    ~Jen (

    1. Thanks Jen! I really did enjoy that lesson planning. So many fun and creative ideas can be found on the internet. One of my student's parents thanked me yesterday (a week after our St. Valentine lesson) for the work I put into this lesson plan. I was pleased of course, but I did say that I wouldn't be giving her child candy each time!