Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Bringing the Classroom Home - Week 5 - The Smell Game

Well, if you read the post for Week 4 (here), it gave us a head start on our senses! Senses are pretty cool and a ton of fun to talk about. Once you start describing what your nose smells or your ears hear, it's amazing how in tune with your surroundings you'll become!

My daughter sang a new song that totally made me cry! It went something like "God gave me ears that hear, eyes that see and hands that feel. God gave me a nose to smell and a heart that beats for You. A wahm-bahm-bahm, a wahm-bahm-bahm, a wahm-bahm-bahm, a wahm-bahm-bahm. A wahm-bahm-bahm, a wahm-bahm-bahm and a heart that beats for You."

It was shortly after this that she told me she wasn't going to sing me any more songs "because they make you cry. I know, I know, they are happy tears." Ok, I digress!

I wanted to work on the sense of smell with Big Sister. We have a short scratch-and-sniff book that she likes to read, but she typically will exhale air when I put the sticker near her nose. Then my favorite is when she says "oh, that smells good." Right, like she could tell. So, this week seemed as good as any to work on developing that skill.

I remember a game my father used to play with us when my siblings and I were young. He would hold a small piece of some food in his hand and we would have to guess what it was by smelling and tasting it. Usually it was something easy like pickles or cheese. I remember always saying "don't give us onions!" And he would always reply "I'm not going to give you something you don't like." He earned our trust and kept our trust by never giving us something that we didn't like.

So before lunch the other day, I collected a variety of distinctly scented and beloved foods for my daughter. I put them on the plate and covered them with a paper towel.

One by one I held them under her nose for her to smell. She would guess. Then I'd let her taste it to see if her answer changed.

She thought this game was quite fun and made a guess (incorrectly) for each item. Mostly she thought it was "peppermint" How does a pickle smell like a candy cane? It doesn't but this is a skill that we are developing. She has to learn to use her senses and incorrect guessing is a part of the process. She did learn to sniff in instead of breath out when trying to smell something. Some of the times she did a little panting-type sniff, but as I demonstrated how to breath deeply she did it more and more correctly.

She was excited to talk about our game at dinner that night with dad and I know that she is excited about playing it again. In my book, that's what I consider a winner!

I hope that your family can play a Smell Game and have a great time laughing over missed items, smiling over delicious treats and bonding over shared trust!

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