Exploring Nature with your 5 Senses (Part 4 Smell)

Here we are in part 4 of our series on Exploring Nature with your 5 senses.Be sure to go back and take a look at the rest of the blog posts. There is a list below with the links.

Today we are focusing on our sense of smell. It is spring here and the perfect time to get outside and rediscover all the smells that have been buried under the snow all winter.

1. Go on a five senses scavenger hunt. There are any options for printable versions or you could make your own.  Perhaps you could make a separate poster for each of the senses you are exploring. Below are the links to a few scavenger hunts I found online.

Nature Scavenger Hunt Printable by Childhood 101 
Five Senses Nature Walk Scavenger Hunt on Teachers Pay Teachers
Nature Walk Worksheet on Teachers Pay Teachers
Winter Nature Scavenger Hunt by Backyard Brilliant

2. Pick one item in nature and try to compare it with other samples of the same thing. For example you could compare the smell needles on a variety of pine trees. Do the same for flowers and see if they have a different sent.

3. For flowers there is a lof you can do there. You could compare the strength of the fragrance and also learn about what types of insects are attracted to the various sents.

4. Make up a variety of teas either from your pantry or items in nature. Do they taste the way they smell? Which ones do you like the smell of?

5. Talk about how different smells make you feel. Often there is a memory associated with that sent and feeling.

6. Gather up some different scents from nature, check your fridge and cupboards too. Then have fun trying to guess what they are while blindfolded! If you want to take this further and relate it to taste you could see experiment with plugging your nose while tasting to see if it makes a difference.

7. Make some scented play dough. There are many simple homemade play dough recipes out there. Add to the sensory experience by adding in things like pumpkin pie spice, cinnamon, mint, lavender, lemon, vanilla.

8. Learn all about which animals have a great sense of smell. Have fun with this by watching videos and documentaries, visit a zoo or animal shelter, talk to experts and read books together. Children are far more engaged when the can experience things first hand, when they can ask questions and have fun.

Animals with great smell

Did you know...
Whales have no olfactory nerves and can not smell at all
Snakes can smell with their tongue

9. Ask some other interesting smell related questions and find the answers. 
What is the worst smelling plant?
Why do some animals stink?
Why do animals need good sense of smell?
Why do they mark their territory and how is that related to smell?

I've gathered a some more links with ideas to get you exploring outside with the five senses. I also hope you'll share your experiences, stories and photos with me on Facebook

Be sure to check out the rest of the series as they are posted