Celebrating Valentine’s Day for many is a day where countless people worldwide will give flowers, candy, and cards all in the celebration of “love.” Many homeschooling families will be tempted to celebrate this holiday apart from school or ignore it entirely. But, think about what your child will miss. Celebrating Valentine’s Day provides us the perfect time to give and teach the most important character trait in life, the foundation of the world and who God is: Love. We’re often intentional about lessons like responsibility and courage. But, we often forget to deliberately talk about and teach our children how to love. It is a command (John 13:34), after all, and defines the key to true joy in this life! Wondering how to celebrate Valentine’s Day this year? Use the holiday to empower your kids to love others, truly, unconditionally, and deeply from the heart. Here are a few ideas to get you started.
As homeschoolers you know that in order to teach a concept you have to define it and see it for what it is, and what it isn’t. Start your love training by giving your kids the true definition of what love is. If God is love, he gets to define what it is! So, use the Bible to provide the Truth of what love looks like in the eyes of God. Go on a “verse search” and have each family member choose a verse about love that speaks to them and helps them to better understand what love looks like. Make this character lesson hands-on by having each person creating a poster, door hanger, piece of art, etc. out of their verse. And encourage memorization, of course!
Want to take this to a deeper level? The Bible defines a couple types of love: “agapao” and “phileo.” When searching for verses on love, help them research and decide the type of love presented in each verse.
As adults we know that love isn’t a feeling, it’s a choice and a commitment. And teaching and modeling this truth to our children will make a huge impact in their ability to resolve conflict and act lovingly as adults. So, why not practice? Write a Valentine’s Day play as family based around, you guessed it, love! Any good play involves characters, conflict, reactions, and (hopefully!) a resolution. Have your kids write a play about choosing to love based upon what they’ve discovered true love really is. Have writer’s block? Discuss a time in your child’s life when he did not respond lovingly and write a play or skit about how he could have reacted in love.
Our culture idolizes many things; wealth, power, success, talent, money etc. As homeschoolers we work hard to provide better role models to our children through careful examination of historical figures, literary characters, and heroes of the faith. But, when we consider and list “heroes of the faith” or our role models, often we choose those who have had great courage, incredible faith, or amazing sacrifice. To truly teach love we need to model it and revere those who have shown the ability to love despite challenges. This Valentine’s Day encourage your children to find and study someone who chooses to show love to God and others. Consider people you know, those you’ve studied, or Bible characters. Reflect on their life and encourage your children to share how this person’s commitment to love inspires them to choose love and emulate traits from the character.
Sometimes we consider love to be natural and instinctive, something that we just feel and do. So we stay focused teaching those areas our kiddos struggle with (like cleaning up their rooms or stop fighting with their siblings!), and we don’t view love as an action we need to teach. However, our actions often mirror what’s in our heart, and by taking the time to teach love, we are helping them mold their heart and attitude. So celebrate Valentine’s Day! It gives us the perfect opportunity to focus on this most important choice, love, and to empower our children to recognize, honor, and choose to love others every day throughout their lives.
How will you be celebrating Valentine’s Day with your homeschoolers? Tell us in a comment below!