Valentine mailboxes and magnets for preschool play

I started collecting these little red and white mailboxes from the dollar section at Target sometime in January. I thought they would make terrific additions to our February valentine work boxes…

To provide a variety of different learning opportunities and types of play, I included magnetic numbers because the mailboxes are magnetic and it would be a fun way to add address numbers to our boxes…

Also included are paper and markers to write addresses and mail letters. I also made these little heart shaped envelopes for a little fun mailing and a little number sorting and matching…

The construction paper envelopes you see here are simply made of heart shapes cut from construction paper and then folded to make an envelope. You can see how to make these with more detail here from Tinkerlab…

Inside each heart envelope is another surprise!

These little mailboxes and the magnetic numbers lend themselves to dramatic play, conversation about addresses, and they promote a little number recognition and counting practice as well…

The children will ultimately decide how they wish to interact with the materials – this is why I want to keep provide the materials but leave most of the play open ended. I am sure the children will come up with ideas that I would never think of!

See what PreK Pages did with her mailboxes too…

Be sure to save those valentine boxes for future activity boxes and some open ended play!

By |2011-02-13T14:30:42+00:00February 13th, 2011|

About the Author:

Deborah J. Stewart, M.Ed. has been working and teaching in the field of early childhood education for over 30 years. Deborah currently owns and teaches in her own part-time, private preschool called The Children’s Studio. Deborah’s deep passion for teaching and working with young children is documented and then graciously shared with millions of readers around the world through her blog and other social networking communities. Deborah believes that young children learn best through play and exploration and embraces this belief in all that she does in her own classroom so that she can effectively and passionately share rewarding, real- life, tried-and-true practices with other teachers, parents, and leaders across the field of early childhood education.


  1. Vanessa @ February 13, 2011 at 2:48 pm - Reply

    Thanks for the mention! Great ideas as always!

    • Deborah J. Stewart February 13, 2011 at 10:14 pm - Reply

      Thank you Vanessa!

  2. Pam February 13, 2011 at 3:23 pm - Reply

    I’m jealous! I didn’t see those mailboxes at Target- either I just went past them or they weren’t available in our area 🙁 Either way, they are very cute, and I wish I had some as well! (we have a much less attractive green mailbox we will be using this week!) I’ll have to keep my eye out for those red and white ones! Love the ideas to go along with them!

    • Deborah J. Stewart February 13, 2011 at 10:14 pm - Reply

      They were there before V-Day last year too so perhaps they will be back again next year:)

  3. Rachelle February 13, 2011 at 6:37 pm - Reply

    What a fun activity, Deborah! I can’t wait to hear what the children come up with. And thanks for sharing the link — very flattered 🙂

    • Deborah J. Stewart February 13, 2011 at 10:14 pm - Reply

      I loved you folded envelopes Rachelle! I can’t make mine as pretty as yours no matter how hard I try but I still love them!

  4. Kerri February 13, 2011 at 7:33 pm - Reply

    Thanks for the wonderful suggestion on how to use the mailboxes. I picked up a couple but may be heading back for more now! Kerri

    • Deborah J. Stewart February 13, 2011 at 10:13 pm - Reply

      I started off with just a couple then every time I went back into the store – I thought, “Maybe I should grab a couple more.” LOL – you gotta keep me out of these dollar sections!

  5. pink and green mama MaryLea February 13, 2011 at 9:51 pm - Reply

    Such a fun use for these little boxes!!

    • Deborah J. Stewart February 13, 2011 at 10:12 pm - Reply

      Thank you MaryLea:)

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