This is our 3rd week studying the 5 senses. And obviously, as the title suggests, we studied smell. They really did good this week and seemed to enjoy all the hands on…or should I say nose-on (hehe) activities. I had a lot of fun with them, too.
We started out by reviewing the last two senses that we’d studied (touch & hearing). Then we added a nose to our “Mr. Senses Potato Head.” Ok, just so you know, the 2-yr old put his nose on…that’s why its off center. My OCD self would have been more precise, but its not about me, right?
We talked about what Mr. Potato Head could do with the senses that he currently has and what he can’t do. Haddie is very sure that he’d have to communicate by sign language. I corrected her that he doesn’t have eyes, so he can’t see sign language, and besides he has ears so he can hear. But then I realized that he can’t talk since he doesn’t have a mouth yet, so he would have to communicate by sign language after all. At least for his side of a conversation. Yep, I got schooled by my 3-yr-old. I love it!
Next, we read this great book about smelling:
It covered a lot of different aspects of smelling, including the technical side of mucus, smell sensors, nerves, brain, etc. I highly recommend it. Cute pictures, too. The last pages of the book recommended playing a smelling game while blindfolded. Ironic, since I already had one planned. So, that’s what we did next:
I took empty (and clean) aluminum cans (days like these make me so thankful that I have been saving random containers in my school supplies) and covered them with pieces of old trouser socks. I read some blogs that suggested fabric or using containers with lids that you could poke holes in. I chose the darker color so that they couldn’t cheat and look through into the can. Inside each can I first put wet cotton balls (a blog said that they’d help intensive the smells of the spices or items inside). Here’s what I put in mine: Smashed super ripe banana (figured it would smell stronger), coffee grounds, onion slices, cinnamon powder, grapefruit slices and crushed fresh garlic.
I had the kids all smell it, guess what it was and then tell me whether it was a good smell or a bad. We ended up with 3-3 on good vs. bad smells. They did surprisingly well guessing the items. Haddie guessed the cinnamon, coffee, and banana. Titus agreed with most of Haddie’s guesses, except he thought the cinnamon was cookies. But he also did a great job guessing the grapefruit. He thought it was oranges (close enough, right?), and said, “mmm, juicy.” These kids crack me up.
After we had gone through all of the cans, we passed them around to smell again and then they got to each take turns removing the covers. I think they enjoyed that part about as much as the smelling!
Next, they got to put their noses on their “Senses Guys.” They colored and cut out their own noses and then wrote the letter “S” for smell next to them.
Then they got to make their own gingerbread men. Well, sort of. They used cinnamon sticks to rub on sandpaper gingerbread men to make them smell all cinnamon-y. I told them it wasn’t often that they got to color with a stick.
Then, they watched the “Nice to Meet You” Signing Time DVD while I prepared lunch. Haddie can now say “What’s your name?” and “My name is H-A-D-D-I-E.”
Then, we had a picnic lunch in the front yard under the big tree (well, pretty much our only shade tree). We talked about some of our Spanish colors and just enjoyed eating. They are so cheesy : )
(Poor Malachi got in a fight with his swingset…and the swingset won…)
After a little outdoor fun, we came back inside and read another smell book from the library. Then they colored their nose page. They also wrote their names on the bottom of the page and traced the word, “Smell.” We talked about the Spanish word for nose (“nariz”), and reviewed the last two weeks pages and their Spanish names.
Next, we played another smelling game. We talked about how sometimes things look the same, but smell differently. Inside the jars were rubbing alcohol, water, and vinegar. They smelled them and tried to guess. They guessed the water one, and Haddie said the rubbing alcohol was hand sanitizer. I’d say that was a pretty good guess since hand sanitizer is made from rubbing alcohol.
Then we talked about how sometimes things smell the same but look different. Inside these jars was water with lemonade mix and food coloring. Titus said they all smelled like juice.
After that, they got to pick a little of each of my herbs (with supervision) and smell them all. They said they all smelled “yucky,” except for the spearmint, which was “yummy.”
And finally, we made smelly play dough from jello. They got to choose their own flavor/smell. Titus chose Raspberry, Malachi Peach and Haddie Lime. They each got to stir and pour their own ingredients.
Then, they got to stir their own play dough on the stove. Yes, I’m crazy. But they did really good. And they really seemed to enjoy it.
We ran out of cream of tartar, so Haddie had to learn to be a good sport and wait until later to cook hers. Thankfully Malachi was also a good sport and shared his play dough so Haddie could play, too. Then they got to play with lots of play dough toys.
Here’s some of the websites I used for the hands on activities we did this week and the play dough recipe:
Play Dough Recipe– http://childstoryhour.com/recipeclay9.htm
My Lesson Plan w/ nose pic: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1GAbJLlVxqFraBUzrbNQKceY0U_VVbj2kvZoYI4ApMu8/edit