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The Five Senses - Intermediate Mid

Lesson information

Positive Psychology Learning Outcomes

Students will...

  1. identify their own senses.
  2. recognize their surroundings.

Language Learning Outcomes

Students will...

  1. create descriptions using adjectives.
  2. use vocabulary associated with the five senses.

Materials Needed


Being aware and appreciative of the world around us is key to well-being and happiness. When we are mindful of all the good surrounding us, feelings of gratitude and appreciation of beauty flourish. We usually perceive the world through our five senses: sight, smell, hearing, taste, and touch.  Explain to students that today we are going to talk about being more aware of things around us by focusing on our five senses.

Activate Background Knowledge

Have students stop whatever they are doing and close their eyes. Pick a color (one that is prevalent in the classroom) and simply say it to the students repeatedly a few times so that they begin to think of this color. When they open their eyes afterward they will point to the first thing they notice in the classroom. Repeat this 3 or 4 times with different colors. 

Example: say “” then have students open their eyes and point to something they notice in the classroom. Is it blue?

Have them close their eyes again and say another color “” Have students open their eyes and point again. Were the things they pointed to black?

Explain to students that being mindful or aware of ourselves and our feelings can change what we focus on when we are looking at things. For example, a person who is happy might notice a pretty flower on the street, while a person who is angry might only notice trash on the same street. This is part of the reason why being mindful of our senses can help improve our lives. 

Activity 1: Listening and Vocabulary

What are the five senses? Use the following video (play from 0:00-1:25) to help explain what each sense is and examples of how we can use it. 

Explore Beyond Your Door - Episode 5: Exploring the Five Senses 

After viewing, brainstorm together some other ways that we can notice each of the five senses in our lives. 

Play the following interactive video to practice a little more seeing each sense in action. Note* this may be a good time to review the present progressive tense form. The video will ask questions such as “What is she doing” and the answer will be something such as “She is smelling.”

Snack Attack 

Activity 2: Vocabulary/Grammar

Explain to students that talking about the five senses uses a lot of descriptive adjectives. We use adjectives to describe nouns. Common endings of adjectives are -y, -able/ible, -ous, -ed, -ing, -ic. 

Put a list of adjectives on the board. Split the class into small groups and have them work together to categorize each adjective under a sense. Demonstrate an example first if needed. Example: “sweet” can be used to describe taste. 

Note* Students may need to use a dictionary to help them with this activity.

Adjectives List:

  • Loud
  • Sweet
  • Sour
  • Silent
  • Soft
  • Bright
  • Bumpy
  • Noisy
  • Long 
  • Shiny
  • Large
  • Stinky
  • Smelly
  • Small
  • Hard
  • Silky
  • Dry
  • Quiet
  • Chewy
  • Crunchy
  • Heavy
  • Dark
  • Delicious
  • Squeaky
  • Spicy
  • Stale
  • Spikey
  • Sticky
  • Salty
  • Bitter
  • Fizzy
  • Smoky

Activity 3: Writing/Reading/Speaking 

Bring a snack that has a lot of sensory input such as crunch bars or pop rocks. Soda pop also works well--ones that also have sound are preferable but if not something such as a clementine can be used. Have students take their time to observe the candy bar and fill out the chart with descriptions for each sense using adjectives. Then, have students read their charts and try to summarize what he/she wrote to another student or small group. The chart can be found in the following document:

Five Senses Snack

Activity 4: Speaking

Explain to the students that now they are going to play “Guess Where” and try to describe a place using all of the senses without telling anyone else what place it is.

Model this first. Pick a place such as a restaurant but don’t tell the students. Describe it with the senses such as “I can see a lot of people here. It is very crowded for dinner. It’s noisy because many people are talking. I can also hear oil sizzling from the kitchen. It smells delicious. The table feels cold, and the chairs are very soft. What place is it?”

Give students about five minutes to think of a place and write down their descriptions for each sense. They can use the adjectives from Activity 2 to help them. 

Allow time for each student to describe their place either for the class or a small group to guess.

Activity 5: Writing

Complete the 5-4-3-2-1 activity using this chart below as a guide to get started. Have students write down their answers for themselves to help them prepare for their homework log this week. Wind down by discussing again the benefits of being aware of our senses in our lives. 

No photo description available.

Retrieved from: 


Have students keep a senses mindfulness log for every day this week

Five Senses Mindfulness Chart.docx



Have students stop whatever they are doing and simply look around the room. Give them about one minute and have them try to find something they have never noticed before inside the classroom. The teacher can demonstrate one thing as an example before beginning; this can be something as simple as “there’s a piece of tape on the wall.” After one minute, students can share with the class what they saw. 


Discussion question: A lot of times our memories are linked to smells and sounds and thinking about them also makes us more mindful of these moments.

  • What is your favorite smell and sound? 
  • Are there any specific memories or experiences that connect to those smells or sounds?


Review the adjectives by using the following game. This will require some dice if possible and works best done in groups. Or the teacher can randomly ask students the questions as an adaptation. 


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