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Exploring the Five Senses
The five senses—hearing, sight, smell, taste, and touch—help shape children's development through the experiences that they have. This printout helps engage children in the thinking about how their five senses contribute to their understanding of and communication about their world.
Explain to the child how our five senses help us figure out what’s going on around us and help us decide whether to enjoy or not enjoy an experience: our eyes help us see, our ears let us hear, our hands help us feel, our noses let us smell, and our tongues help us taste things.
While on a walk around the home or out and about, or while doing other activities, have the child think about his/her 5 senses. Ask him/her the following questions:
- What did you notice?
- What did you see?
- What kinds of colors?
- What did you hear?
- What sounds?
- Did you smell anything?
- What did it smell like?
- Could you feel anything?
- What did you feel?
- What did it feel like?
- What did you taste?
Have the child use the accompanying printout to write about or draw what they experienced. As they go through each category, ask them prompting questions about the things they saw, smelled, felt, etc. They can draw or write about their experience in the respective boxes.
As the child continues to have everyday experiences (a trip to the park, making a yummy dinner, the first splash in the pool) and his/her curiosity comes out, talk with the child about how his/her five senses strengthen everyday experiences that we have.
- Do more activities with the child that encourage him/her to think specifically about one of his/her senses, as outlined in the Tip, Engaging the Five Senses to Learn About Our World.
- Encourage the child to write a Theme Poem about his/her sensory experience.