As I mentioned before, the purpose of teaching about the five senses in preschool is not for the children to be able to recite the five senses, but to build sensory awareness. Whenever I introduce the five senses, I like to start out with the book, My Five Senses by Aliki. It does a great job of simply introducing each of the senses, and then pointing out how we may use several of them at the same time, and that we use them to be aware of what’s around us. It’s very brief, very simple, and right to the point.
After reading the book and discussing the senses a bit, I teach the Five Senses Song. I start out with the Five Senses Song Cards I have scanned in here. (You are welcome to use them as long as you have already tried to draw some of your own and are absolutely sure you couldn’t do much, much better!) I have five representing the five senses, and five representing the things we might experience with those senses (hopefully you can recognize what they are). Using a pocket chart, I first set out the five senses cards, one at a time, and talk about what each one is. Then I spread out the five object cards out of order and ask the children to try to match the sense to the object. Now, of course this can create a bit of a debate as more than one sense could be used for each object, but debates can be good! Once the senses and the objects are matched up, we sing the song. (The verses don’t necessarily have to follow in this order.)
The Five Senses Song (Tune: The Farmer in the Dell)
Oh, I use my eyes to see, I use my eyes to see,
When I want to see the blue, blue sky, I use my eyes to see!
Oh, I use my ears to hear, I use my ears to hear,
When I want to hear the robin’s song, I use my ears to hear!
Oh, I use my tongue to taste, I use my tongue to taste,
When I want to taste a lollipop, I use my tongue to taste!
Oh, I use my nose to smell, I use my nose to smell,
When I want to smell the sweetest rose, I use my nose to smell!
Oh, I use my hands to touch, I use my hands to touch,
When I want to touch my dog’s soft fur, I use my hands to touch!
Remember that when you are teaching a new song, start at a natural pitch for the children, for most adults (especially altos like myself) that is probably just above your comfortable starting pitch. Also, start out very slowly. You can add speed as the children become more familiar with the song!
More from the “Exploring the Arts through Our Senses” unit here!
I love this song! I will have to use it when I start our five senses topic. We also like to have our parents help us conduct a 5 Senses Fair at the end of our unit. The parents run five booths & the kids rotate through each one. Thanks for sharing your ideas.