Love is in… the ELT classroom!

Will you be my valentine?


I have to admit Valentine’s Day is one of my favorite holidays… Call me a romantic if you want, but the fact is, despite Valentine’s Day not even existing in the Brazilian calendar, I love to celebrate it. See, the thing that makes it so appealing to me is that it is a day to celebrate love. Simple as that. Not necessarily romantic love… just love. Love for a parent, for a friend, for a child… And despite the (overly IMHO) commercial side of it I think it’s great to have a day to tell the people we love how we feel. I know we can do that every day, but having a day with that sole purpose reminds us to celebrate and acknowledge that love.


So I decided to share a couple of activities I’ve created and used in some of my groups around Valentine’s. I hope you enjoy them!

A warmer that’s silly and simple, but that I have used is just eliciting the word Valentine’s Day from the students, then writing it on the board and giving them 3 to 5 minutes to come up with as many words using the letters from the board as possible. They can only use a letter more than once if the letter appears more than once on the board, and words have to contain 3 letters or more. A nice competition will surely warm their hearts up!

Here are some activities (note: they were prepared for an advanced conversation group I have, and the students are quite fluent. So, depending on the level you teach, they may need some adjustments):


Valentines Activity 1 CNN Article

Valentines Activity 2 Reuters Article

Valentines Idioms with Heart

14 comments on “Love is in… the ELT classroom!

  1. Arjana says:

    Dear Cecilia,
    These actvities are wonderful! Thanks for sharing, I’m sure my students will love it.
    All the best

  2. Simple doesn’t mean silly – that’s a great warmer and great activities! it’s fun to celebrate Valentines day even if not in the local calendar, I do it too!

  3. Allynne says:

    I’ve loved your post, Ceci!!

  4. Anna says:

    These are great resources! Especially liked the idioms and the CNN stories… really fun and original 🙂

    • Thank you Anna 🙂 I’ll try to post more of my conversation classes activities. I really go out for that group to keep creating interesting things to talk about.

      • Anna says:

        Will look forward to that 🙂

        One of my learners hasn’t stopped trying to get her ‘heart’ idioms into every conversation ever since. “Were you surprised Saima… was your heart in your mouth chuckle chuckle chuckle”. It’s hilarious! ;-p

  5. […] post by Cecilia Lemos var addthis_language = 'en'; Filed under Uncategorized ← Πέμπτη […]

  6. […] I used the Valentine’s Day activities in my groups I decided it would be a good opportunity to have a follow-up lesson to review […]

  7. Hsiangni says:

    Thanks for the posting! I think the activities are very useful. They can not only motivate stduents becuase the activities are related to their lives; they can also teach students how different cultures react to the same festival.

    • Hi Hsiangni 🙂

      You’re very welcome! I’m happy you found the activities useful… I find that this kind of discussion can be a lot of fun (and many times much more meaningful to students) and they’re producing the language to do something they actually want to, talk about something they find interesting. This is especially true when you have classes with students from different countries and cultural backgrounds. Thank you for the feedback!

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