kids valentines activities

Today, we’re giving a virtual high-five to a few bloggers who have created some awesome Valentine’s Day activities for kids that target a variety of motor, visual, and cognitive skills.  These fun movement activities get our therapist stamp of approval for keeping kids active and engaged this Valentine’s Day! :)

Buggy and Buddy chalk hearts

Crafts for Kids: Chalk Stencil Heart Collage – Buggy and Buddy
This creative art project from Buggy and Buddy incorporates some great targeted grasping practice – a perfect way to isolate those Super Fingers!  It touches on bilateral coordination skills by requiring kids to stabilize their paper with one hand while tracing with the other hand and also challenges visual motor integration and prewriting skills.  Check out the post at Buggy and Buddy for detailed step-by-step instructions.


pleasantest thing i spy

Valentine’s Day I Spy Game – The Pleasantest Thing
A quick, no set-up, free printable activity?  Don’t mind if we do! :)  This adorable activity from The Pleasantest Thing promotes visual perceptual skills including tracking, visual discrimination, and figure ground differentiation (finding a target in a busy competing background).  Love it!  Visit The Pleasantest Thing to download the free printable!


no time for flashcards musical valentines day craft

Musical Valentine’s Day Craft – No Time For Flashcards
We LOVE making musical instruments!  It’s the perfect way to work on fine motor skills (putting the instrument together) and gross motor skills (playing and moving with the instrument) all at once!  This cute musical shaker requires lots of great fine motor work: grasping, in-hand manipulation, and strengthening. Then, once it’s assembled, the possibilities for movement and auditory processing activities are endless!  Play it fast, slow, up high, down low, side-to-side, hard, soft, repeat a rhythm, play to the beat of your favorite song…a therapist’s dream!  Visit No Time For Flashcards for full instructions.

toddler approved heart hopscotch

Heart Hopscotch – Toddler Approved
This Valentine’s Day twist on hopscotch provides a fun way to work on balance, posture, strength, endurance, motor control, and coordination.  Whew!  This one packs a lot of punch!  It’s also great for incorporating cognitive skills and academic concepts and allows for practice with social skills like turn-taking.  Visit Toddler Approved for full instructions.

JDaniel4sMom valentines sensory bin

Valentine’s Day Sensory Bin – JDaniel4’s Mom
Where to begin with this post?  Deirdre from JDaniel4’s Mom covers such a wide range of skills with this set of adorable Valentine’s Day activities, we can’t wait to try them with our kids at school!  She starts with a great sensory bin made up of low-cost, easy-to-find materials and then pulls each of the materials aside for more targeted practice of specific skills, including fine motor skills, visual perceptual skills, and even oral motor skills!   Visit JDaniel4’s Mom for details and instructions.

Want to take a closer look at the skills kids are using in these activities?  Check out our Clinical Closeup page, where we break down the skills listed below in terms everyone can understand.

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Claire Heffron
Claire Heffron is co-author at The Inspired Treehouse and a pediatric occupational therapist in a preschool/primary school setting. She began her career with a bachelor's degree in magazine journalism but quickly changed course to pursue graduate studies in occupational therapy. These days, she has come back around to writing, establishing a small but fulfilling freelance career. She is a mom to two funny, rambunctious preschoolers and relies on yoga, good food, and time outside to bring her back to center.


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