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Love in a Test Tube – Fun Valentine’s Day Ideas!

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Valentine’s Day celebrates love. Or maybe it celebrates all the kids in your child’s class with the big exchange of small paper postcards. If they’re lucky, they will get a lollipop attached to the paper card. Woo hoo.

The holiday brings doilies, construction paper hearts, paper Valentines and don’t forget the candy. Come on people, Valentines can be more exciting than this.


Last year I decided I was not going to phone in the Valentines. I wanted my daughters’ classmates to get excited when they received their Valentine. I even wanted them to take home the Valentine and learn something from it. Yes, sometimes I get carried away.
How you ask?

I made Valentines filled with science of course!

I purchased Baby Soda Bottles (indestructible test tubes made from soda bottles before they are expanded to soda bottles) from SteveSpanglerScience.com. You can also find plastic test tubes and play test tubes by Googling them.

I filled the Baby Soda Bottles with a mixture of conversation hearts, red hots & M&Ms. I picked one of the many mini test tube experiments, printed out directions on small cards and tied a ribbon around the top of the test tube for extra beauty. And yes, they were a HUGE hit.

I also purchased a package of Goldenrod paper and brought it in for the kids to create unique Valentines during the classroom party. Goldenrod paper looks like regular yellow paper, but the dye in the paper turns bright red when it is exposed to ammonia (a base). If you put an acid like lemon juice or vinegar on the red, it changes back to yellow. The kids went crazy cutting out hearts and shapes and making designs and patterns with the color.

I actually use washing soda in place of ammonia. Washing soda is a cousin of baking soda and isn’t so toxic.

I gave each child a piece of paper, cotton balls and cups filled with washing soda and water and cups filled with lemon juice. Several of the kids missed recess because they were so fascinated with their super cool Valentines.

For more detailed instructions and more scientific Valentine ideas, check out our Valentine section at SteveSpanglerScience.com.

Guest blogger Susan Wells is the mom to two girls. She enjoys enriching her daughter’s education by finding the learning in everything. They especially enjoy science activities. She was the social media strategist for Steve Spangler Science, a Colorado company dedicated to helping teachers and parents get children excited about science.

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