by Marisa Henderson

The 5 senses


Introduction to Lesson Plan

Date:      March 23, 2006

Subject:    Science

Grade Level:      First Grade



STANDARD: Describe characteristics of objects. Example: size, weight, shape, texture, color, taste, smell
STANDARD: Use appropriate skills to design and conduct a scientific investigation.
STANDARD: Use mathematics in scientific inquiry.



The students will.......

1.      Name four of the five senses and explain their origins on the body (i.e., eyes, ears, nose, tongue, hands)

2.      Use four of the five senses to explore and describe various objects

3.      Demonstrate how knowledge can be gained from careful observation by offering two possible situational examples

Introductory Activities

Ask the students, "Do you think you could name and describe an object if you could only smell it or hear it?"  Have the students close their eyes and see if they can identify the following objects just by their smell or their sound.  Play a small section of the listed CDs and see if the students are able to identify and describe the sound.  Spray a bit of air freshener in the air and ask the students to describe what they smell.  

Developmental Activities

Questions (to be asked by teacher)

1.      Do you think you could name and describe an object if you could only smell it or hear it? (Closed) [yes or no]

2.      What are our five senses?  (Knowledge) [sight, smell, tastes, touch, hearing]

3.      What parts of our bodies do our senses come from?  (Knowledge)  [eyes, nose, tongue, hands, ears]

4.      What are some ways we observe the world around us?  (Comprehension) [any of the five senses]

5.      What are some ways we may describe an object?  (Comprehension) [size, shape, texture, color, smell, taste, etc.]

6.      How could we gather information about our surroundings if we could not {see, touch, hear, taste, smell}?  (Analysis) [various answers]

Data Processing:

1.      After data collection has been completed, the class will begin data processing, while still in groups.  Place data processing transparency on the overhead.

2.      The speaker of each group will lists several observations the group made about the object.  (Observations to not need to be specific.  For example, the student does not need to say the object was blue, rather they can say they observed the color of the object).  As students give examples, the instructor will list their observations on the data processing sheet in the column "Descriptions".  (*Note to teacher - without telling students, classify the objects according to senses.  For example, list all those observations made by sight together.  Do this for each of the five senses.)

3.      Ask questions while the students are stating their information.  For example, if a student says an object was bumpy, ask them how they came to this conclusion.  This will allow you to know if the student made this observation by looking at the object or touching the object.

4.      Once a significant amount of information is gathered, ask students to notice the overhead.  Ask the students, "Do you see a pattern in the data we have collected?"  The students should notice that all those observations arranged together are grouped according to one of the senses.  Ask students to decide which of the five senses belongs with each of the collection of descriptions.

5.      To motivate student involvement during data processing, ask, "How did you come to that conclusion (about the description)?  "  What are some ways we observe objects in our everyday lives?"  "  Can anyone tell me about a time you used your observational skills?"


Culminating Activities


            Ask the students, "How does this relate to what we have been learning about the nervous system?"  [All the senses are controlled by our brain, which is part of the nervous system]

"Why is it important we observe the world around us?"  [Various answers]  Ask the students to return to their data collection sheet, and write down two examples of a situation in which they gained knowledge by observing something.  Give the students an example.  [I went to take a drink of milk, when I noticed it smelled strange.  Then I looked at it and saw it was a different color.  I knew, from my observations that the milk had gone bad and I would get sick if I drank it.]



1.      Informal observations during data collection and data processing (Formative)

2.      Data collection sheet (Formative) 

Alternate Activities





  A familiar smelling spray air freshener (peach, strawberry, pine, etc)

 Any small objects that can be observed and described using the five senses.

Flowers, leaves, grass, cinnamon sticks, stones, shells, dirt, fruits, pine cones, candles, balls, batteries, etc.

A CD with various sounds

Summary sheet for data processing


Self-Evaluation of lesson

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