Preschool Prep Week 12: Senses

Letter of the week is T for taste. touch, talk, texture

There are so many great ideas out there. I thought it would be fun to break the week down into each sense, instead of the usual categories. So here's a good starting list of things to do for each of our senses.

Sight: This might be fun, because not only do you have to use your vision, but you'll be learning a new way to communicate. Teach the children sign language. No talking allowed. You could show a picture, and then demonstrate how to "say" that word using your hands and no sounds.
Play Hide and Go Seek

Touch: Sensory Balloons: dry beans, sand, hair gel, flour, baby powder, rice, water etc.try to have the child guess what's inside. source

or This board looks fun and easy

Here's another "blind" experiment 
mystery box
This teacher used this idea for Halloween, but it would work well for senses too. Here are some fun things to include: * Eyeballs: peeled grapes or olives * Tongue: banana peel or canned green chili (whole) * Intestines: spaghetti (with a splash of vegetable oil to keep them flexible) * Teeth: candy corn, corn nuts or broken pieces of chalk * Fingers: cocktail wieners (cut off one end) * Bones: chicken bones, cleaned and dried * Hair: bean sprouts or wet yarn * Heart: peach half (canned) * Ear: dried apricot * Skin: square cut from a flour tortilla, brushed with oil

Sound: This is a Montessori idea. Get opaque black film canisters and fill them with different objects, a pair for each item. Some can be the same as the above mentioned: dry beans, sand, rice, water. Or try new things: marbles, cheerios, staples, screws, dry pasta-whatever you think sounds good, and sound different from the others. Play a matching game to see if they can find the two sounds that are similar. This activity is for pre-reading and helps early learners listen to sounds.

The Walgreen's store and the CVS stores where we live save them, and give them away for free. Just go to the photo counter and ask for them. They don't have to be this exact type of container, if you have other tiny,  identical containers such as prescription bottles use those. The idea here is that you can't see what's inside. 
Play music for the child. Let them listen to all types of styles: pop, jazz, reggae, classical, county, music with heavy base, cultural folk music from around the world. Talk about how each one makes them feel. What sounds do they hear, are they high or low sounds, deep or soft sounds. 

Taste: use 4 containers with food depicting the 4 large areas of taste: sour, bitter, sweet and salty. This can be a fun one. Here are some examples of Sour: grapefruit, lemon. Bitter: cocoa, carbonated water,  100% cranberry juice. Salty: soy sauce, sardines, chips. Sweet: candy, sugar cubes, honey.

Smell: Get containers and fill them with different items that describe the words we use in everyday language. For example: Dirt-earthy, pine needles-fresh, lemon slices-citrus, roses-floral, cinnamon-spicy, frosting-sweet, oregano-herbal. It might be fun to make your own air fresheners to see how these items combine and make new things to smell. source They could follow these ideas, or have a large array of ingredients and have the child combine whatever they like to see how the smells come together.

Get scent strips ( or just make them out of paper) and put different scents on them. You could either spray perfume/ cologne on them, or get scents from your baking cabinet-olive oil, vanilla, lavender, lemon, pepper etc. have the children smell them and decide if they like the scent or not. 

Here's a fun craft to do. Each time you cover a "sense" decorate a Potato Head with that part of the body.


Make something together. A few items I would recommend are popcorn, apples, or brownies. 
Now discuss each sense. How do you know it's cooking? What senses are you using? How do you know when it's ready to eat? Now try eating a bite each time without using one of your senses? Cover you eyes, try to eat without making any sound, plug your nose, don't use your hands, (very carefully) try to swallow without it touching your tounge. Was anything easy? Anything difficult? 

Using a cookie sheet, poor a bottle of cinnamon on the board and have the child practice writing big T and little t by drawing lines through the spice. Feel free to let them play and draw other pictures, or letters. 


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