In NZ, Valentines Day occurs fairly quick into the school year. I usually take the opportunity to pop some Valentines themed board games into the Math group boxes for the children to play as part of their rotation tasks.
Last year I made up a set of 'tic tac toe' for each group box. The sets had a coloured game board (glued onto card) and 6 felt hearts of one colour, 6 of another colour. I am slightly embarrassed to admit that I forgot about the games, and they were in the group boxes for the entire year. However, am excited that every set survived! I credit it to the fact that each heart was a double layer of felt blanket stitched together- very durable.
I am stoked with the progress so far. The children are loving the revival of one of their favourite games. They are practising their skills in logic and reasoning, co-operation and score keeping. Plus its a great way to get a new game into the group boxes without going through the rigmarole of introducing a new set of rules.
I usually introduce one or two other themed games at the same time. This St Patricks Day we had a roll and cover game available for free from here http://www.teachingblogaddict.com/2013/02/26-st-patricks-day-primary-printables.html and a 'make 10' basic facts game from TeachersPayTeachers. This helps to ensure that we are getting new games fed into our group boxes and that we are re-inforcing key knowledge areas.