I am not sure when Valentine’s Day became about children. On Wednesday, my school was full of balloons, stuffed animals, candy, and other goodies. It seems that parents, myself included, are more worried about sending their children the largest balloon or stuffed animal than what to buy their spouse. At one time, Valentine’s Day was for sweethearts.
There are problems that I see with sending gift items, such as balloons and flowers, to school. One problem deals with the other children. As a kindergarten teacher, I spent much of Valentine’s Day afternoon answering the question: “Where’s mine?” It is very difficult for these children to understand why they did not get balloons or candy. I tried explaining how I had a Valentine’s Day gift for my children at home and that maybe they too had a gift waiting for them at home. However, I knew that some of the children would likely have nothing. It is wonderful to share the love of Valentine’s Day with your children. However, it is so sad for some children to receive items at school and others receive nothing.
I also question why some parents send items to school. We had one girl at my school that did not receive the balloons her mother had ordered for her. After school, the mistake was corrected and the child received her bouquet. However, the mother was very upset and kept telling her daughter, “I’m sorry everyone did not get to see them.” I am not sure that the balloons were sent because of love but maybe as an opportunity for the child to ‘show-off’.
Another problem with sending items to school is transportation. Some of the children that received flowers and balloon bouquets were bus riders. I’m sure most buses were full of flowers and balloons. Balloons can obstruct vision and sound much like a gun shot if they pop. Flower vases can spill water or break. Some schools and districts do not allow balloons on the school bus. Other schools do not allow items to be sent to school. I wish that my district would consider one of these options.
Children can place much pressure on parents to send items to school. While sending your child a gift to school is a very thoughtful idea, perhaps another treat would be even better. Try some listed here.