Activity Introduction

Do you know your smells? Your skills are about to be tested! You’ll have a series of cotton buds, all with different smells on them, and it’s up to you to identify them.

Safety advice: This is an activity about smelling and not tasting. Remember that not everything that smells good will taste good or will be good for you (such as flowers, perfume or shampoo).

This activity is a great one to do together as a family.

Ideal for: Lower Primary Ages 5 – 7

Themes: 

  • investigate 

Time required: 15-20 minutes 

Curriculum connections: Science, Critical and Creative Thinking

Tips for Parents and Carers

Depending on the age and ability of your kid/s, you may need to prepare the cotton wool buds prior to starting the activity.

Lesson & Curriculum Details

Curriculum codes:

Complete lesson for classroom teachers:

Can you smell it?

Resources Required

•  Cotton wool buds soaked or dabbed with different scents. Use anything from inside the house that has a distinct smell and that can be applied to a cotton bud. For example, you can use: eucalyptus oil, vanilla essence, coconut essence, almond essence, perfume, antiseptic lotion or solution, dishwashing liquid, vinegar, fish sauce, or rub the cotton buds with different herbs such as mint or basil. 
•  Paper, scissors and pen/pencil to create labels
•  Plates or plastic trays/tubs to place cotton buds on
•  Rubber gloves (optional)

Learning@Home from Cool Australia

Learning@Home resources are designed for parents and teachers to use with children in the home environment. They can be used as stand-alone activities or built into existing curriculum-aligned learning programs. Our Learning@Home series includes two types of resources. The first are fun and challenging real-world activities for all ages, the second are self-directed lessons for upper primary and secondary students. These lessons support independent learning in remote or school settings.

Cool Australia’s curriculum team continually reviews and refines our resources to be in line with changes to the Australian Curriculum.

Worksheets

Student Worksheet

What Can You Smell? - Activity Instructions

Do you know your smells? Your skills are about to be tested! You’ll have a series of cotton buds, all with different smells on them, and it’s up to you to identify them.

Part A: Senses

Step 1. Begin by having a discussion with those doing this activity with you around the following question:

  • What do you already know about your senses?

Our senses help us to understand the world around us. Our senses send messages to our brain about what is happening around us. This can help us to avoid danger, like when we smell smoke from a bushfire, or when there is a loud noise, like a thunderclap. Our taste buds help us decide which foods are safe to eat by reacting to foods that are too salty, sour or bitter. When we get bitten by ants or touch spiky plants we get messages to our brain telling us to avoid the area where those ants or plants are.

Take a moment to test your senses:

  • What can you hear?
  • What can you see?
  • What can you feel/to
...
 
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