Feeling Fruity Sensory Exploring

The early stages of a child's understanding of the world centres on sensory experiences. In this activity we use fruit and vegetables in different forms to explore touch, smell, taste and sight
What you will need:

  • A selection of different fruits & vegetables such as; apple, orange, pineapple, peach, melon, carrot, celery

  • A tray

  • Bowls or plates for each child

  • Blindfolds

Preparing the activity

The idea of this activity is to encourage children to use all of their different senses to compare and identify different fruits and vegetables.

To prepare you need to assemble the following on your tray:

  • One each of your fruits and vegetables, whole

  • Another each of your fruits and vegetables, cut in half

  • A small pile of peelings from each fruit and vegetable (with things like celery which don't have a "skin", simple take some shavings using a peeler)

  • A small pile of bite-sized chunks of each fruit and vegetable

Doing the activity:

  1. Sit all of the children around a table, and get each to put on a blindfold. It's not vital that they do this, but it will make the activity last longer and be more engaging if they can't see the fruits and vegetables straight away.

  2. Bring out your whole fruits and vegetables, and pass them around the group. Ask the children to give them a good feel with their hands, but not to smell or try to taste them. Can they guess what fruit or vegetables there are?

  3. Share out the halved pieces of fruit and vegetable, and encourage more detailed feeling, poking and squishing. By feeling the inside of the fruits and vegetables, and giving them a squeeze and poke can the children make any more guesses about what is on the table?

  4. Give each child a pieces of peeling one at a time and encourage them to smell. Do they recognise any of the smells? What do the smells remind them of?

  5. Now it's time to taste - give out the tasting pieces one at a time. Can they tell which fruits and vegetables there are by tasting them?

  6. Finally, let the children take off their blindfolds and use their sense of sight to confirm what fruits and vegetables there are. If you want to, you could include some more unusual fruits or vegetables so that even with their eyes the children might not be 100% sure what they are!

Tracking the activity:

8 - 20 months

Physical Development, Moving & Handling; "Picks up small objects between thumb and fingers"

16 - 26 months

Physical Development, Health & Self Care; "Willing to try new food textures and tastes"

22 - 36 months

Understanding the World, The World; "Notices detailed features of objects in their environment."

30 - 50 months

Expressive Arts & Design, Exploring & Using Media & Materials; "Beginning to be interested in and describe the texture ofthings."

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