CUTIEPANTS VALENTINE'S DAY BOOK ALERT!! Click, Clack, Moo I Love You! is pretty much everything you ever wanted in a Heart Day picture book: hearts, lots of giggles, sparkle and sweetness galore PLUS dancing mice and casserole! 🤓

Kinley and I both love every book in the Click, Clack, Moo series and we were so excited when this one showed up on our doorstep (Thanks, Simon Kids!!) Do you know these crazy farm animals? The premise of them all is a little like Toy Story on a farm -- what the animals do when the humans aren't paying attention, ya know?

In this one, a cute little yellow duck is rushing around getting everything decorated and ready for a big Valentine's Day dance for all of the animals. She makes everyone a sparkly valentine and a necklace with hearts made of everything she can find. We saw a crafty opportunity the minute we saw those sweet little accessories! Sparkly heart necklaces?! SIGN US UP!

Wanna do a little Valentine's Day bookish play, too? This is the perfect super easy classroom party activity -- super low-mess, quick and easy, and they can wear the finished products for the cookie and candy eating!

You'll need:
  • Click, Clack, Moo I Love You! by Doreen Cronin (If you are in a pinch and don't have time to get your hands on a copy of this cuteness, here's a video read-aloud from YouTube)
  • poster board or white scrap cardboard (we used the inside of our Little Debbies heart cakes box)
  • 2 heart stencils, one about three inches tall and one about two inches tall
  • pencil
  • scissors
  • tempera paint sticks in valentine colors: pinks, reds, purples (crayons would work, too!)
  • hot glue + glue gun
  • straws, one per kid
  • baker's twine, yarn or string
  • beads
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1. Read the story and giggle a bunch. 

Those mice, man! And the ending, right? SO CUTE!!

2. Trace one big heart and 4 little hearts on your white poster board or cardboard and cut them out.

3. Color your hearts with tempera sticks.

No rules other than get all of the white covered. Oh, and have fun! These should take two minutes or less to dry so by the time they are all decorated you should already be ready to start the next step.

4. Cut your straw into five little pieces and hot glue one to the back of each heart. 

This little tip I learned from my awesome friend Shelly @creatingcreatives instantly turns ANYTHING into a bead...can you guess where this is going?

5. String hearts and beads on your necklace string.

I started with one smaller heart, then added some beads (you can cut up your leftover straw piece if there is any and make some extra beads out of that, too!), then the second smaller heart and some more beads and then the biggest heart and more beads and so on. Kinley did it her own way with no rhyme or reason. There's no need for this to be perfect! Just step back and let the beading magic happen.

I feel like when I try to boss Kinley on how to do stuff like this it takes the fun out for both of us, but if I just let her be and do it how she wants to she has a blast and she generally comes up with something way cooler than I could ever even imagine. It's so hard to let go of the "it must be perfect" idea, after all that's how art was when we were in school, right? Everyone should end up with something that looks like the teacher's? But focusing on making the process fun instead of a perfect product in the end almost always ends up way happier and more beautiful experience for everyone. Sorry. Went off on a tangent there! But for reals, consider it 😊

6. Tie up the ends of the string and try it on! 

If rainbowy beads and gorgeous art hearts aren't quite enough and you want to make your heart necklaces super extra, coat your little tempera stick hearts with glitter glue. Sparkle makes everything better but it will def take way more time to dry, too, so keep that in mind. Especially if the little human you are creating with does glitter glue like K does 🤩😳😂

As always, please tag us @raising.kinley if you give our little bookish play heart necklaces a try and post them on social media. It makes our little hearts so happy to see our random schoolroom fun out in the world making other people happy. I would love to share yours in my Instagram stories, too, and show them off to the world if you are cool with that!

Happy (almost) Valentine's Day, makers!
xoxo Cara

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