Teen Program: Anti-Valentine Party

So, my intention is always to get these up sooner. Sadly, I keep failing at it. I promise I’ll be better this summer! (My Spring events are almost done.) But enough with my excuses, let’s talk about my Anti-Valentine’s Party.

The 4-1-1:

When: February 14th, 6:00 – 8:00pm
Resource: https://sites.google.com/site/thetweenscene/home/february-2
How many teens: 16
Cost: approx $60. This included the pinata, candy, snacks, & small prizes.

The run-down:

I tried to use the schedule that Tiffany and Brianne posted, but keeping my teens on a schedule is near impossible. I try to keep them on task, but it is never an exact science with us.

When the teens first arrived, they received a scratch-off card that could earn them a free book, small prize, or a couple pieces of candy. If they had no matches they still got a piece of candy, so there were no true losers.

Next, they were given the task of creating their conversation hearts (5 total). They were also told that they would have to give up a heart if caught saying love, heart, valentine’s, hug, or kiss. I let the teens use this time to socialize and eat snacks. (20 – 30 minutes)

I then broke them into 4 groups to create their own break-up letter. This is where things got a little interesting. There was one table of regulars that I had to remind to keep it PG. They were crazy and strange but there were a couple that were even made me giggle. I think only one group went for serious why the rest tried to be as off the wall as possible. (30 minutes)

Third thing we did was vandalize the romance cover. I had some that really got into this and some who were eh about it. Again, I had to remind them to keep it PG as several of them were veering into wildly inappropriate. I did allow a little fun, but I stopped it before too many lines were crossed (30 minutes)

The last group activity we did was find my match. I put famous book, tv, and history on slips of paper that I taped to their foreheads. They were to ask each other questions to figure out 1) who they had & 2) who had their match. This went way faster than I intended it to. While some struggled, others had their matches found in moments. Perhaps the best part of this game was I gave two siblings Clary & Jace. It was completely by accident, but several teens had a good laugh over it. (15 minutes)

I tried to get them to do the “worst place to be broken-up with” list, but they were getting extremely antsy and wanted to take a crack at the pinata. I told the teens they could take 2 hits each. I don’t know if pinatas are really that weak or if it was because it was a pull-tab style pinata, but it only lasted 3 teens (6 whacks). Of course, once it hit the floor, all of them started to stomp on it until it was utterly and completely obliterated. (5 minutes – includes cleaning up the mess!)

Take-away/lessons learned:

  • I think this would work better as a 90 minute event rather than a 2 hour one.

  • I need to find a better way to do the scratch off cards. I don’t know if I didn’t have the mixture correct or didn’t use enough crayon, but several would scratch off enough and it made it very hard to read the prize.
  • The conversational hearts were great for decoration, but flopped as a game. They played for real for a while, but by the end of the program they had picked a random person and gave all their hearts to him. I still honored the rules and gave him a prize, but it didn’t seem as fair. I may make the period shorter or just drop the game aspect all together.
  • I had a heart-breaker songlist playing in the background, although, the teens seemed to barely realize it. I may try to incorporate it in better by either making it a game or having some karaoke.

  • I need to find a stronger pinata. I really didn’t think it would destroy in 6 whacks. I will also limit it to one whack per teen.

  • Overall, even with the few hiccups, I felt like the program was a success and will do it again next year. This may be one that I allow my TAG to come up with games/ideas for as well.



  1. Wow, what a great idea! My kids would love this. I also appreciate your “lessons learned,” such as the need for a pinata that can sustain more whacks. As far as the music goes, maybe next year you could ask the participants to make a song list in advance. Maybe have a contest for “worst” love song? That might be fun.

    1. I did have my Teen Advisory Group help make the playlist, but I def. like the idea of having a “worst” love song contest. Thanks for the suggestion!

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