Help your child create a scent scrapbook.
Talk about the smells that remind your child of happy times and beloved people — eg. like how the waxy new crayon smell makes them think of preschool, or how the scent of lilacs reminds them of their grandparents’ home in the spring.
- When ready, go outside (eg. in your yard) and ask your child to put on a blindfold or close their eyes while they are guided around the property by an adult or older responsible sibling.
- Ask the child to identify items by smell. Here are some ideas:
- A handful of freshly cut grass
- mud (eg. use a stick to scoop some mud)
- lilac bloom
- pine needles
- an open bottle of bubbles
- While blindfolded, ask your child questions about what they can smell. For example:
- Can you smell the rain? What does it smell like?
- Can you smell a barbeque? What direction is the smell coming from?
- What other smells do you notice?
- Identify a pleasant smell; a smell that makes you happy. Does the smell remind you of anything? If so, what?
- Eat a mystery snack outside while blindfolded. Ask your child if they can identify the snack by smell (without touching the snack)? Eat the snack while wearing the blindfold. The child could also be encouraged to open containers or snack bags while blindfolded. Discuss what was easy/difficult/different?
- Come inside and create a sensory scrapbook and attach some of the above listed items, one item per page. Other scented items (inside the home) can be later added (perhaps on a rainy day) such as cinnamon/cloves, vanilla, citrus, cocoa, etc.
- Literacy component: Label the items in either print or braille. Modify as appropriate for children with CVI (eg. Use solid black cardstock, use child’s preferred colour to attract attention, etc).