Happy Valentine’s Day! As your kids prepare for their class parties by making valentines to hand out to their friends, they may ask you some questions as to what Valentine’s Day is all about. There really isn’t a great guide to the history of Valentine’s Day for kids out there, but we’ve put together a kid-friendly way of explaining it to them.
The origin of Valentine’s Day and St. Valentine has a couple different theories. Here are two that you can share with your children.
First, there is a legend that St. Valentine was a priest who secretly married couples in the third century. It was thought that soldiers were more effective in battle if they were not married, so the Emperor outlawed marriage for young men. St. Valentine didn’t think this was fair, so that’s why he married the couples in secret.
Another theory is that there was a man who was in jail, and he fell in love with the daughter of the man who imprisoned him. Before he passed away, he sent her a letter and signed it, “Your Valentine.” Perhaps Valentine was his proper name?
The history of Valentine’s Day for kids probably won’t be as interesting to them as the way we celebrate Valentine’s Day now. Exchanging cards and treats is just way more fun! You can also share Valentine’s Day with your kids by reading Valentine poems to them.