This year for Valentine's Day, we tried out a new family activity. It involved a family mailbox, little heart-cutouts, and kind words. When someone did something kind or we thought of something we appreciated about another family member, we wrote it down on a heart cut-out and put it in our family mailbox (made by Zac and me a few years ago). We called it words of appreciation or compliments.
We gave each other these Valentines starting from February 1 all the way to February 14. There was no limit to how many compliments or appreciative words we gave each other so we left plenty of hearts on the kitchen table throughout the 14 days. After our special Valentines family dinner while we were all eating dessert, we pulled the hearts out and read them out loud.
When I first announced our special activity on February 1st during the commotion of dinner, "Daddy" responded with an uncertain, I'm-not-sure-I'm-on-board, "um.....what?" He did however, participate and get into it as the two weeks went on, which included requesting more hearts when we ran out. Adelyn needed a little help. I encouraged her a couple of times each day to think of something that someone else did for her and wrote it down for her. She would put it in the box herself. I think Scott and I both really enjoyed the excitement and joy on the kids' faces when they listened to a compliment addressed to them.
This worked well for us because not only did we all try to dwell more on the positive attributes of others, but we also tried to make sure we were being appreciative material worthy of a heart! Happy Valentine's Day!
This activity is great for
- Tactile/Sensory motor- cutting out, writing, hands-on putting hearts in the box
- Visual- Seeing the family mail box reminds us to think about the topic
- Auditory- listening to the family members read what is on the heart for them