Kids love holidays and special occasions. Plan something special for Valentine’s Day this year with a hands-on DIY Valentines Escape Room!
Escape rooms can be expensive to visit, but so much fun for kids and adults to play. If you have young kids that want to try all of the fun of an escape room, with out the cost of visiting an escape room, DIY escape rooms are a great, and easy option.
For any escape room, simply choose 5-10 puzzles, connect them together and set up your room. For more escape room ideas and hands-on puzzles, visit my collection of over 40 DIY escape room puzzles.
The Valentine’s escape room below is perfect for young kids, groups, or for my teacher friends, a classroom center. I’ve included all of the printable pages and puzzles for FREE, in my Resource Library. More information on how to get the printables can be found at the bottom of this post.
If you have been thinking about creating an escape room, this Valentines escape room is a great place to start. It is not overly complicated and is targeted for school aged children.
However, like any DIY escape room, you can add more puzzles and tricks to make the room more complicated and harder for older children or bigger groups.
So gather a few materials, print the free pages and get ready to turn any space into a Valentine escape room!
If you are simply looking for a quick escape room that you can set up without needing any extra materials, check out my print and play Valentine’s Day escape room game.
Valentines Escape Room Materials
There are several materials that you need for this Valentines escape room, however, most of the items are simple and you may already have around your house, like paint and salt. I have also included links at the bottom of this post for any materials that you don’t already have on hand.
For this escape room, you will need:
- (Free) Printable Valentines Escape Room puzzles
- Lockable Box x2
- Number Lock x2
- Liquid Soap
- Clear Tape or Laminator
- Baking Soda
- Blue Food Coloring
- Paper Hearts
- Small Spray Bottle
- Prize (Optional)
- Heart Shaped Mold (Silicone Works Well)
- UV Pen or Glow in the Dark Paint
- UV Light
Preparing Your Valentines Escape Room
When setting up your escape room you can choose any room or space you want or have available. Although it is an escape room, you don’t need to actually lock players into the room. Choose a space that works for you and place the clues around the room.
If you have an older, or more experienced group doing the escape room, add red herrings (clues solely intended to mislead players) or add a few extra puzzles that you made up.
Keep in mind that your escape room does not have to run perfectly. Stay with your group as they work their way through the game and help out if something doesn’t go as planned.
When setting up your escape room, you can add to the fun and excitement by adding props and themed items, such as colored table cloths, music and other decorations that fit the Valentine’s Day theme.
Preparing Your Escape Room
Depending on the group playing the game, you can decide how much to help players and give them clues. If you have young children playing, guiding and helping them throughout so they do not become frustrated can lead to a better experience.
If you think your players can solve the room with a little bit of support, you can tell kids at the beginning that they are only allowed three (or more) clues so they have to choose wisely when to ask for help.
However, try to avoid jumping in to help as soon as players get stuck. The best learning and problem solving happens when kids are not able to solve a puzzle immediately. They have to try a few strategies before they find a solution.
Stand back and let this learning happen. This is the point of escape rooms and makes players feel successful and capable.
Valentines Escape Room – The Game!
Below are the full instruction of how players will work their way through the game. Read through and experience the game as players will. After the instructions, there are detailed instructions on how to set up the puzzles and prepare the hands-on clues.
As you enter the room, you notice several new Valentine’s Day items and lots of hearts around the room. You focus in on a letter left on a table.
As you read it, you find out that you are going to have to work for your Valentine’s Day treats this year and you’ve got a bunch of puzzles to solve first.
One the letter you also notice that there are some letters that are bigger and bold. You make note of these letters and notice that they spell out: CLUE WILL GLOW ON BACK
Flip over the page and … there is nothing. You look around the room for something that may help to make it glow. You look inside of a bag set aside in the room.
Inside you see a collection of Valentines and a UV pen! The UV pen will definitely help to make something glow! You set the Valentines aside for now, and turn on the pen light to shine on the back of the letter.
When you shine the light on the back of the page, you notice that there is in fact a message that lights up.
You scan the page and see the message, “LINE UP THE CUPIDS… SMALLEST TO LARGEST”.
You are now on the hunt for cupids!
You quickly remember all of the pictures of cupids on the Valentines in the bag. You open the bag and dump them out on the table. There are a bunch of Valentines, each with a cute message inside.
You quickly read the Valentines, looking for any hidden messages, but then focus on the pictures of cupids on the back. Each cupid is a different size, so you start lining them up, smallest to largest, like the previous clue suggests.
Once lined up, you notice on the back of each Valentine that there are a few letters. Laid beside each other, you read the message, “SCRATCH OUT THE RED PETALS”.
You look around for flowers or red petals on something.
Flower Petal Puzzle
You find a collection of four flowers, each with several red petals. You look at them initially trying to figure out how to scratch the red petals.
Scratching a small part of the petal you notice that the red paint on the petals does scratch off and revels a white background.
You grab a coin and start scratching each of the red petals to revel the background – and a word on each petal!
Once all of the red petals are scratched, you put the flowers in an order to say, “SPRAY PERFUME ON THE BLUE HEARTS CHECK THE ONE BUBBLING WITH LOVE”.
Blue Hearts Clue
Blue hearts! You know you’ve seen some blue hearts around the room. You find three blue hearts sitting on a plate on a table.
The plate says, Do Not Touch, and you notice a colorful alphabet code page at the side. You glance at it, but set it aside for later.
On a shelf, you find a small bottle that says perfume. You bring it off the shelf and spray it on one of the hearts.
It doesn’t do anything so you try another heart. Still nothing. You’re wondering if you misunderstood the clue, but as you spray it onto the third heart, you notice that the top of the heart starts fizzing and bubbling. It’s bubbling with love!
As you spray and it bubbles, you notice something inside the heart. It is a sheet of paper with a few pictures on it. You open up the blue heart and pull it out.
Looking at the pictures on the small page, you notice all of the pictures are the same as the page that was under the plate with the blue hearts.
You start matching up the pictures and find that they match with six different letters: AHCKRY
These letters don’t initially have any meaning. You try unscrambling them to create a word, but with no luck. You look back at the alphabet code page and notice at the bottom, beside the letter Z, that it says, “On the hearts cross out…”
There are lots of hearts around the room and several that you have already decoded, like the blue hearts. Looking around you notice a collection of hearts taped to the wall.
You noticed them when you first entered the room, but the letters on them did not make any sense. Maybe you can make sense of them now.
Now, using the alphabet code and the clue to cross out certain letters, you start to decode by crossing out the letters from the code in the blue hearts.
Once all of the letters are crossed out, you are left with a number. “Two Seven One”.
A number code! There must be a lock somewhere that you need to open! You quickly find a treasure chest with a lock. You try the number and right away it opens!
Maybe you’ve solve the escape room, but quickly notice that there is another treasure chest inside the one you just unlocked.
Box of Chocolates Puzzle
You notice at the bottom of the treasure chest that there is a picture of a box of chocolates, some written clues and a number code for each chocolate.
You start reading the chocolate clues and begin crossing out each of the chocolates that match the description. Finally, you are left with one chocolate. A cute house shaped chocolate with sprinkles!
You look to the numbers connected to each chocolate and notice that the house shaped chocolate includes the number 214. You try the lock on the smaller treasure chest and it works!
Inside you find a Valentine just for you, a certificate and some special chocolate! You did it, you solved all of the puzzles and escaped your DIY Valentines escape room!
Valentines Escape Room Puzzles and Set Up
Now that you know how players will move through your DIY Valentines escape room and solve each of the puzzles, below are instruction on how to prepare each puzzle and set it up for players to solve.
All of the pages featured above in the game are free and can be printed by you. Start by printing the welcome letter and then in either glow in the dark paint, or with a UV pen, print the message for players to organize the cupids in order from smallest to biggest.
If you don’t have a UV pen, you can try another way of making the message appear on the back, such as the clue from a space escape room I created where you can print the code onto a wet sheet of paper with the letter underneath.
Next, place the UV pen/ UV light somewhere in the room. I placed it in the bag with the Valentines, but you can place it anywhere in the room. If you want to make it more challenging, hide the light somewhere that players will have to search for it.
Print the Valentine cards, cut and fold them so that the cupids are on the front and the letter codes are on the back. Players will likely read each of the little messages inside the cards, but there are no hidden clues within the words.
Preparing the Flowers
Next, create the flowers. Print the page with the flowers and then laminate it. If you don’t have a laminator, I have used clear tape in the past and it works well. Once laminated or covered in tape, cut the flowers out and then get ready to paint.
Use a mix of equal amounts paint and liquid dish soap for the red petals. The soap allows the paint to scratch off easily.
Paint the red petals with the soap/paint mixture and then paint the rest of the petals any color (except red) with regular paint.
Glue the middle circle onto each flower.
Blue Hearts Clue
Next, create the blue hearts. I used a silicone mold and filled it with a baking soda, water and a blue food coloring mix. For a more detailed guide on how to make these, check out my Valentine science experiment using the same materials.
In the other two, or more, molds, you can use any mix of materials you want. I used a salt + water mix and left it to dry and then popped it out of the mold.
Make sure that only one of your blue hearts is made from baking soda. In this mold, place the picture code. This code needs to be laminated or covered with tape or it will break apart as it gets wet from the baking soda and water mixture.
Once the hearts are dry, remove them from the mold and place them on a tray or plate. Make sure to print on the plate, “Do Not Touch Until Directed To” or something similar. Otherwise players may crumble the hearts before it is time.
I did include my code from the alphabet chart but every lock has a different code.
You can use my code and simply tell players that the treasure chest is locked and they have to tell you the code in order to move onto their next clue (“two seven one”).
If using your own code, you need to print your number code onto your hearts to tape onto the wall and then choose which extra letters you are going to add in.
Choose what extra letters you want to include on the letters and cut and paste the pictures from the alphabet code. I have included the pictures from the code for you to choose which you want to use.
Create your code and place it into your blue heart mold and baking soda mix.
Valentines Escape Room Treasure Box Clues
Next, place the three pages connected to the chocolate clue into the larger treasure box.
Fill out your number lock code on the chocolate code page and make whatever the number is for your second lock the number beside the house shaped chocolate.
Add some treats or a prize to the final, smaller treasure chest and lock it up. You’re ready for the game to begin! Happy Valentine’s Day!
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Hands-On Teaching Ideas
Are you looking for more exciting, unique activities to try with kids this Valentine’s Day and beyond? Check out the collection below of hands-on activities, from another printable escape room and STEM activities to science experiments and more!