Friday, March 4, 2011

Five Senses

Next week's theme is the five senses.

Book Suggestions:

5 Senses by Nuria Roca
My 5 Senses by Aliki
You Can't Smell a Flower with Your Ear by Beverly Collins
The 5 Senses by Herve Tullet
My 5 Senses by Margeret Miller
Hello Ocean by Pam Munoz Ryan
Fun with my 5 senses by Sarah A. Williamson


Materials: A variety of small objects of different textures (cotton balls, piece of sand paper, pencil, play dough etc), a box or bag
Description: Place all of the objects into a bag or box (so that your child cannot see them). Have your child put their hand in the bag and grab one object. Encourage your child to describe how the object feels. See if they can guess what it is. Your toddler can then take the object out of the bag and see if they were right! While doing this activity explain to your toddler that we use our skin to touch and feel.
(If your toddler is not ready to use describing words or guess, have them put their hand in the bag and pull out an object then you can talk about it while they feel it)

Skills Targeted: sensory development, compare and contrast, understand the opposite hard and soft, language development, use descriptive words

Materials: a variety of different foods, small cups
Description: Have a tasting party with your toddler. Place a variety of different foods into small cups. Your toddler can close their eyes and taste the food from each cup. See if they can guess what the food is by it's taste. Explain to your toddler that we use our mouth and tongue to taste.
Skills Targeted: sensory development, language development, make a guess, understand parts of the body and what they are used for
Materials: musical instruments (if you do not have any instruments you can use pots and spoons or anything that will make noise)
Description: Allow your toddler to play several instruments, making music. Talk with your toddler about how the instruments sounds. Are they loud? Are they quiet? Are they high or low? You and toddler can take turns banging a drum loud, then banging it quiet.
Skills Targeted: sensory development, compare and contrast sounds, motor skill development, language development

Listen to the sounds all around:
Description: Take your little one outside and encourage them to sit very still and listen. Ask your child what sounds they hear? Do they hear a car, a plane, a train, a bird etc. Explain to your toddler that we use our ears to hear. You could even take a recorder with you and record the sounds that you hear.

Skills Targeted: sensory development, develop listening skills
What Colors do you see:
materials: construction paper, glue, scissors
Description: Prior to doing this activity, cut out several shapes of different colors from construction paper. Set them out for your toddler to see. Ask your toddler to find all the blue shapes (then red, green, yellow etc.). Put all the shapes back. Next ask your toddler to find all the circles, triangles, squares etc. You could also put all the shapes into a hat and have your toddler take one out at a time. They can tell you the shape and color as they pull each one out.
you could also cut the shapes out of felt and do this activity on your homemade felt board. (check our blog for directions on how to make your own.)

Skills Targeted: sensory development, color recognition, sorting, language development

Materials: a variety of objects with different smells
Description: Let your toddler smell one object at a time, without looking (you could blindfold them). See if they can guess what the object is by it's smell. If they are too young to guess, simply have several objects available for them to explore and smell. Explain to your toddler that we use our nose to smell.

Skills Targeted: sensory development, make a guess, language development

What do you see:
Description: Take a walk or go sit outside with your child. Take time to look around you and have your toddler tell you everything that they see. Explain to them that we use our eyes to see. You could even bring your camera and let your toddler help you take pictures of things that you see outside. Print the pictures and make a collage of everything that you saw outside.

skills Targeted: sensory development, language development, appreciate the world around us, recall details

Rice Krispies:
Materials: rice krispies and milk
Description: Rice Krispies are great for children to learn about all 5 of their senses. Give your toddler a bowl full of dry Rice Krispies. Have them tell you what they look like (small, tan etc). Ask your toddler what part of their body they used to see.
Next, all your toddler to touch several of the Rice Krispies and explain to you what they feel like? (light, hard etc). Have your toddler tell you what part of their body they used to feel the cereal.
After that, your toddler can smell the Rice Krispies. Have your child tell you how they smell and what part of their body they use to smell.
Pour some milk on the cereal and have your toddler listen to the sound they make. Ask your toddler what part of their body they use to listen.
Last have your toddler taste the cereal. Your toddler can tell you what they taste like and what part of their body they use to taste.
You could use many other foods to do this activity with also.

Skills Targeted: sensory development, language development

Materials: paper, 6 different textured objects (sand, foil, cotton, felt, bubble wrap etc.), glue
Description: Using a marker or pen, draw lines onto a piece of paper to divide it into 6 squares. Your toddler can glue each different object into a different square. As they glue each one talk about how it feels. When the objects dry, they can feel the objects and review how they feel.

Skills Targeted: sensory development, feel different textures, compare and contrast, language development

Listening Eggs:
Materials: plastic eggs, a variety of objects that make noise (ex. bells, rock, cotton balls, rice, pennies)
Description: Place the objects inside the plastic eggs. Have your little one shake each egg and listen. See if they can guess what is inside the egg from the sound that it makes.

Skills Targeted: sensory development, enhance listening skills, make a guess

Feet Paint:
materials: fingerpaints, paper, paint brushes, tape
Description: Tape a large piece of paper to the ground. Take off your toddlers shoes and explain to them that they can feel things with their feet, not just their hands. Paint the bottom of your child's feet (ask them how it feels). Have them walk across the paper. Your toddler could also simply step into the paint then walk across the paper.

Skills Targeted: sensory development, enhance creativity

Other Fun Sensory Games:
I Spy
Musical Chairs
"Where's Waldo" books

Songs and Fingerplays:

Senses, Senses:
(sung to the tune of Twinkle Twinkle)

Senses, senses here and there
Senses, senses everywhere.
I use my skin to touch soft things.
I use my ears to hear bells ring.
My nose is what helps me smell
My eyes help me see so well.
My mouth is what helps me taste.
My five senses are so great.
Senses, senses here and there.
Senses, senses everywhere.

Here is my Hand:

Here is my skin, it helps me feel.
My mouth helps me taste my meals.
I have two eyes so that I can see.
My ears help me hear everything close to me.
My nose is what helps me smell.
My senses are busy, as you can tell.

I like to:
(sung to the tune of "I like to Eat Apples and Bananas)

I like to touch, touch, touch, touch things with my skin.
I like to smell, smell, smell, smell things with my nose.
I like to taste, taste, taste, taste food with mouth.
I like to hear, hear, hear, hear sounds with ears.
I like to see, see, see, see things with eyes.
I have five, five, five, five senses!

I have 5 senses:
(sung to the tune of Head, Shoulders, Knees, and Toes)

I have 5 senses, so do you.
I have 5 senses, so do you.
Touch, taste, smell, sight, hearing too.
I have 5 senses, so do you.

Online Fun:


Visit to watch videos all about the five senses.

Flash Cards:

ESL-Kids has printable five senses flashcards. Print these and review them with your toddler throughout the week.

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