Our science curriculum changed a bit over the years, but it always included some variation on teaching 5 senses. Sometimes the objective was to name the senses and match the body part; other times it was to make observations about the world using 5 senses. I usually made this book early in the year because we would revisit and discuss our senses throughout the rest of the year. I had a puppet, Leroy, who helped me out with this lesson.
I concentrated on one sense each day – the first day Leroy came out of the castle wearing a scarf tied around his eyes. I played with the children – having Leroy ask why it was so dark, and talking about the children’s hair and clothes but calling things the wrong color. The kids loved correcting him, and started telling him to uncover his eyes. When he asked why he should take the scarf off they told him that then he would be able to see.
After that we read a book talking a little about the parts of your eye and the importance of sight. Then I modeled the page in the book – adding the eye, lid, eyelashes, iris, pupil, etc. Then I gave each child colored dots to add because the only way to tell colors is by seeing.
I used sight words we had been learning.
Then I modeled the cover of the book.
They had to cut out the rectangle and fold it in half. That first day I asked them to cut the slit only between see and hear, and add an eye under the word see. Please click on this link to get a copy of the paper I used for the cover, and the text for this book.
Each day we cut the next slit and added the body part under the word.
We also learned a song to the tune of Mary Had a Little Lamb
All of us have 5 senses
All of us have 5 senses
See, hear, smell, touch, taste.
There is a verse for each sense – all end with “see, hear, smell, touch, taste.”
All of us have eyes to see, eyes to see, eyes to see …
All of us have ears to hear, ears to hear, ears to hear…
All of us have a nose to smell, nose to smell …
All of us have a tongue to taste …
The next day Leroy came out wearing earmuffs and he couldn’t hear what the children were saying.
We talked about the parts of the ear, and made noisemakers that day. We added a bell on a string, and music notes to the page.
For smell Leroy had a clothespin on his nose – we did smell testing with lemon, soap, peanut butter, etc. in film canisters (tiny plastic containers), and added this page:
We painted glue and sprinkled orange drink mix powder on the orange, and an adult sprayed a tiny bit of perfume on the flower.
For touch Leroy was wearing mittens – we made tactile pictures that day too.
We added sandpaper and fiberfill to the page. Sometimes the children traced their own hand – this was an Ellison cut handprint.
For taste Leroy came out with a plastic cookie and kept saying that he couldn’t tell what kind of cookie it was. We read a book about tasting and the children realized that Leroy did not have a tongue.
I gave each child a package of Sweet Tart candy – they could eat the candy and glue on the package, or just glue the whole package of candy. My wrapper fell off! We also did taste testing – I showed the children sugar and salt and talked about how the only way to tell the difference was by tasting. In small groups each child tasted a few grains of sugar and salt, and then ate different foods – crackers, apples, pretzels, M & M’s, etc. then they charted which were salty and which were sweet.
Because we reread this throughout the week and sang the song every day it was easy for the children to remember all 5 senses.