Valentine’s Day for American children today

Adriene Hill Feb 14, 2012

Adriene Hill: It’s Valentine’s Day — which can be thrilling or mortifying, especially if you’re a kid hoping for a valentine from your crush. It can also be expensive if you’re a parent.

KJ Dell’Antonia, an author of the New York Times Motherlode blog, has been helping her kids get ready for the big day. Good morning K.J.

KJ Dell’Antonia: Good morning!

Hill: So what do classroom Valentine’s Day celebrations look like these days?

Dell’Antonia: Well I think the rule in every classroom right now is one valentine per kid, no exceptions.

Hill: So I’ve got to give a valentine to every one, even my enemy?

Dell’Antonia: Even your archest-enemy. I do believe they’re allowed to be snarky but you know you’d probably have to create that yourself.

Hill: Now are we talking about paper valentines or have phones and technology infiltrated elementary school Valentine’s Day parties yet?

Dell’Antonia: You know, I don’t think phones and technology have infiltrated. What has infiltrated is candy. We are not talking paper valentines, we are talking wrapped candy.

Hill: And is that going to be a majority of what gets handed out do you think?

Dell’Antonia: I don’t know majority hmm. It’s probably at least half. The kids really, having seen a valentine with candy, they immediately appear the next year. Even if you make your own, “I want to stick a Hershey kiss on my valentine” so they like to make it a little present.

Hill: Now what do your kids make of the one-valentine-for-every-kid rule?

Dell’Antonia: It’s not that it’s occurred to them to question it, it’s that two of them are quite small and they’re in large preschool classrooms. They get a little tired after about the 9th or 10th and it becomes a bit of a chore.

Hill: Well Happy Valentine’s Day to you and thanks so much.

Dell’Antonia: Happy Valentine’s Day, Adriene.

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