Key Stage 1 – Using senses


  • To improve observation skills.
  • To complete simple investigations using all senses.

Starter activity ideas


Make some different sized letters and stick them to a large piece of card. Using these resources as a stimulus, encourage children to think about what questions they could ask about sight. How could they find out about their sight? From how far away can they could see the letters clearly?


Provide children with blindfolds and small quantities of familiar foods such as crisps, sweets or fruit for them to identify. Challenge them to identify the foodstuff through the sense of taste only (check for allergies beforehand). Encourage the children, in small groups, to describe the taste of the food rather than just merely trying to identify each example.


Using small, clean plastic food pots covered with clean cotton fabric and held in place with an elastic band, ask children to describe and then to try to identify the smell in the pot, for example herbs and spices. Provide named pots of the same herbs and spices to enable them to compare and match the smell in the pot to the herb or spice.


Download some pictures of animals with different sized ears as a stimulus discussion point. Ask small groups of children to choose their own questions to investigate. Allow them to think about what resources they need and to choose how they might record their data.


Use feely bags or boxes to provide children with an opportunity to describe objects. Include some objects that would be familiar and some that would not. Ask the class to use their sense of touch to help them to describe the object (linking work in science effectively to literacy). 




For more lesson inspiration and for the theory behind how to develop good lessons, see the Lessons in Teaching Series.