To celebrate Valentine’s Day, students generally exchange valentine cards with their classmates in a celebration of friendship and affinity. Each class will usually bring food to share and enjoy time together in a small class party. Students may create individual “mailboxes” and enjoy delivering valentine cards to each other.
How did Americans come to celebrate Valentine’s Day?
Precise information about Saint Valentine, after whom Valentine’s Day is named, is not known. According to legend, he may have been a priest in ancient Rome who defied Emperor Claudius II by continuing to perform marriage ceremonies after it had been decreed that young men should stay single because they made better soldiers. After being caught and jailed, Saint Valentine may have fallen in love with the jailer’s daughter and sent her the very first “valentine” – a letter that he signed, “from your Valentine”.
February 14th was named Valentine’s Day by Pope Gelasius around 498 A.D., roughly 250 years after Saint Valentine’s death. It became a popular celebration in Great Britain during the 1600s and Americans began exchanging cards in the 1700s.