I'll Owl-ways Be Your Friend
All you'll need is paper, markers and pencils: Cut out a handful of owl silhouettes (we recommend stacking construction paper to get more than one done at a time), add two slits to hold a pencil, a face, a sweet message and you're done.
Pencils: $7 for 24 (These can be personalized with the school name or class!)
Image Credit: Family Fun
You Make My Heart Glow
Fact: Kids love glow sticks. They won't disrupt the classroom, and they're novel. Cut out paper hearts and attach the sticks by cutting two slits, or simply by taping the sticks to the back. To make it easier, write the message before adding the sticks.
Glow Sticks: $9 for 100 (You'll have enough for the whole grade!)
Image Credit: The Teacher Wife
O'fish'ally Be My Valentine?
This Valentine is especially good for classrooms that forbid candy (and for kids old enough to know that "officially" doesn't have an "sh.") Use plastic bags and let the card swim with the fishes for an even simpler approach.
Goldfish: $6 for 8 oz.
Image Credit: Tammy Mitchell Photography
I Dig You
Scoop up some Valentine's-themed M&Ms, add a plastic shovel, encase it all in a gift bag, pop on a label ... and your kid will be knee-deep in new friends.
Shovels: $.49 each
M&Ms: $5 for one large bag
Image Credit: The Fry Family Blog
You're a Blast
Since candy rockets are slightly more labor-intensive than our other ideas, these might be best for smaller classrooms or special friends.
Wrap construction paper (we recommend writing the message first) around a roll of Lifesavers or Mentos and tape or glue a Hershey's Kiss to one end. On the other end, attach construction paper flames. WIth a little imagination, they'll blast right off.
Hershey's Kisses: $5
Lifesavers: about $15 for 20 rolls
Image Credit:Family Fun
You Make My Heart Bounce
Bouncy balls can provide hours of fun. Attach a Valentine's label of your choice to a bag (or just Sticky Tack the ball to a card) and get the ball rolling.
Bouncy Balls: $10 for 24
Image Credit: The Crafting Chicks
Nothing brings joy to the hearts of children like blue candy that makes noise and tickles the tongue. Add labels to single-serving bags of Pop Rocks to get maximum Valentine "bang" for your buck.
Pop Rocks: $16 for 24
Image Credit: A Small Snippet
'Thumb'body Loves You
This example is particularly crafty, but the idea would be just as touching on simple construction-paper hearts. Use one ink pad and one thumb pad to make the cutest cards we've ever seen.
Ink Pad: $1
Image Credit: Brown Paper Packages
Two of a Kind
Staple a label to two identical pieces of candy and call it a (Valentine's) day.
Twizzlers: $7 for 37 oz.
Image Credit: Family Fun
Bananas About You
Pop labels on baggies of Banana Runts that read "I'm bananas about you" and make every little monkey smile. For the more ambitious, a lion-head lollipop reading "I'm wild about you" is just as cute.
To give it a healthy twist, use banana chips instead of candies. (For a really cost-effective option, you can even bake them yourself.)
Banana Hard Candies: $9 for 2 lbs
Image Credit: Fiskars