Looking for a super fun and simple Valentine’s Day STEM activity to do with your kids??
Well, I’ve got good news for you – this one only requires 2 items and you can pick them up from the Dollar Tree!
Valentine’s Day Class Party FOMO?
No homeschool mom wants their kids to miss out on the traditional fun of class parties – to include the fun of a Valentine’s Day Party!
In our first year of homeschooling, I decided to host a little Valentine’s Day party with another homeschool family.
I just went to Dollar Tree for some decorations, Valentine cards, and other supplies.
While I was shopping around, I noticed heart-shaped gummies in the candy aisle and decided we could maybe fit something educational in with all the sugar intake!
My kids and their friends had the best time with this activity! It has been a blast to see them grow with it and look forward to it every year.
Fun and Simple Valentine’s Day STEM Activity for All Ages
1. Gather Your Supplies
You will need
I was able to get my supplies at Dollar Tree, which made this a pretty inexpensive STEM activity
I would recommend getting at least one bag of gummy hearts for each of your kids and more toothpicks than you think you’re gonna use.
I bought 5 bags of gummies (3 for my kids and 2 for their friends) and 1 box of toothpicks.
500 is a lot of toothpicks! We still ran out though as the kids were coming up with new ideas.
2. Explain the Project to Your Children
Depending on the ages of your kids and how in depth you want this project to be, this could mean a lot of different things.
For older kids, just give them the supplies and tell them to build the tallest (and most stable) tower they can in 10 minutes.
Younger kids may need more guidance and a little hint on how to get started.
Consider having the kids draw out a design before they start and/or look up famous architecture (the Eiffel tower, etc.) for structural ideas.
3. Let them Run Wild!
Stand back and enjoy their creativity!
Kids of all ages can come up with original ideas to make their own Valentine’s Day creation.
My kids and their friends all seemed to lean towards a “square” base, but they all had different ways of designing it.
Extra Challenges for Your Kids!
If you want to provide some extra guidance and more learning opportunities, give your kids these fun challenges:
1. Shorter Time Limit!
My kids and their friends had 10 minutes to build and they were rushing to the last second to make the tallest tower.
In the final seconds, my oldest daughter’s tower toppled over, which caused an exciting last-second winner! They loved it!
Here was the winner:
2. Build the Tallest Tower that Can Bear the Most Weight!
I folded a piece of white computer paper and used it to test the structures for weight-bearing ability.
After my daughter figured out how to add some ground support to her tower, her tower held the most weight with 6 gummies before it fell over.
3. Combine Forces!
Have the kids take the towers apart and then team up or pool all their gummies together to see what they can build!
4. See Who Can Make the Most Beautiful Tower
Forget about everything else and just build the most beautiful structure you can!
This is a great way to let imaginations run wild and not worry about what others are doing.
I actually had fun doing this myself and came up with a triangle design that turned out to be pretty stable. It may not be the tallest, but it held 20 gummies before it toppled over!
5. Limit Supplies
Older kids might love the challenge of building something with limited toothpicks, limited gummies – or both!
Add a time limit for extra fun and be amazed at what your kids come up with!
What About the Fake Red Roses?
If it fits in your budget, buy a fake rose at Dollar Tree for every person who will be participating in your Valentine’s Day STEM activity.
Place the roses in a vase and dramatically hand a rose to the kids as they win for tallest tower, held the most gummies, most beautiful, most original, shortest tower, or whatever silly reason you want to hand them away for.
The kids will love to have a little something to hold onto long after the candy and toothpicks are put away.
Questions to Ask Your Kids Before, During, and After the Valentine’s Day STEM Activity
Would you rather live in a house made of candy or a house made of bricks?
What can you do to make this more stable?
What about the shape of a heart makes it harder to work with? What can you do about that? (try to have the hearts all pointing the same direction so there is uniformity)
Why is a gummy so much less stable than a brick or piece of wood when building something?
What other shapes do you think you can make with just gummies and toothpicks?
How can you change this structure so it will hold more weight?
Do you still want to live in a house made of candy after doing this Valentine’s Day STEM activity?
Be sure to share this post with your friends and followers and show off your kids’ creations!
Happy building and have a Happy Valentine’s Day!