This printable Valentine’s Day Placemat is an excellent gift for children that gets them in the mood for sharing and caring.
Children will look for and find hidden pictures, laugh, and enjoy adorable illustrations. Then they will fill in the blank spaces of a secret word puzzle to discover a message. Once they decode the missing letters, they will follow a tricky maze through a tiny neighborhood to deliver a letter to their Valentine. (The secret word puzzle reveals the finish line!)
The Search and Find
“Like it or not, we humans are bound up with our fellows, and with the other plants and animals all over the world. Our lives are intertwined.” -Car Sagan (Astronomer)
I had the opportunity to illustrate a cover for a book of folktales centered on kindness. In that book, there were many stories about animals who awarded kindness to humans in return for service.
I wanted to show that relationship in a fanciful, tender, and in some cases, comical fashion. For example, a child is carried off by a balloon while a bear reaches for them. Another bear gives a child a leg up to pluck a valentine from a Juniper tree. A boy snuggles with a deer in another scene, and a bird sings love songs.
“Birds will always have a song for those that they love.” -Anthony T. Hicks (Musicologist)
There are also scenes and gags depicting love between animals, and in one case, between ghosts. For example, a porcupine confuses a bush with another porcupine, and a narwhale presents a card to a squirrel.
There are many things to find, enjoy, and color on this page.
The Maze and Secret Word Puzzle
This maze is tricky because there is no apparent finish line. Instead, you must find the finish line by decoding directions with missing letters.
It is an entertaining puzzle with a faux isometric appearance and lots of fun little things to see.
It took me a few days to figure out how to put this puzzle together, and I wrestled with it multiple times until I came to this conclusion. I hope that you enjoy it.
How to download and use this printable maze game:
This post was proofread by Grammarly
Hi, my name is Cory Shaw. I am an author and illustrator of books and book covers for children.
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