A time for sharing love, gifts, chocolates and friendship, Valentine's Day is important to both children and adults. As fifth grade students begin to figure what life is all about with body changes and the addition of hormones, celebrating Valentine's Day through a party offers children a positive way to express their emotions. Make the party complete by providing a selection of heart-themed food to nourish young guests as they pass out their own special treats and messages to loved ones.
Mini Pink Pancakes
Make these little pancakes the night before the big party and serve them on a platter with tongs for easy access. Use boxed pancake mix to make preparation even easier. After following the instruction to make the batter, add six to seven drops of red food coloring per batch. Pour in 2/3 cup of mini chocolate chips. Mix both ingredients into the batter until combined. Heat up a griddle over medium-high heat, cover with cooking spray and use a cup to pour heart-shaped pancakes on the griddle. Flip the pancakes over until both sides are golden brown. Once cooled, serve the mini cakes with seedless raspberry or strawberry jam to fit the theme.
Simple Shaped Shortbread
Shortbread is a dough made primarily out of butter, sugar and flour. Once baked, it turns into a decadent and ultra-rich treat, perfect for celebrating Valentine's Day. Combine 2 1/2 sticks of softened butter with 1 cup of sugar, 1 tsp. of vanilla and 3 1/2 cups of flour in a mixing bowl. Get your fifth graders in on the fun by dusting a flat surface with flour and shaping the dough into a log. Wrap it up in plastic wrap and chill for 45 minutes. With rolling pins in hand, get students to roll out the dough 1/2 inch thick. Give them heart-shaped cookie cutters to press into the dough to create themed shapes. Bake the cookies on an ungreased cookie sheet at 350 degrees F for 20 minutes or until golden brown.
Message Heart Brownies
Brownies, while good on their own, are enjoyed even more when slathered with cream cheese frosting and topped with a sweet message. Make a batch of brownies for a fifth grade party and bring in a few cans of ready-made cream cheese frosting and packages of candy hearts with messages. Allow the students to decorate the brownies with the frosting and hearts. When finished they can exchange brownies to send messages to other pals in class.
Minty Chocolate Hearts
Refreshing and chocolaty at the same time, make a batch of white chocolate candy hearts for your students to nibble on during the Valentine's Day festivities. Heat 1/2 cup of white chocolate candy wafers in 10-second intervals in the microwave on high. Arrange 12 mini candy canes to create six heart shapes on a baking sheet lined with wax paper. Carefully pour the melted chocolate into the heart shapes, ensuring that the chocolate fills the entire center of each heart. Sprinkle red-colored sugar over the chocolate and refrigerate the hearts for eight hours before serving.
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