Enhancing your child’s seven senses through play, may sound challenging, but in fact it is one of the easiest beneficial ways of helping our child develop. And it all revolves around play!
Did you know that we have more than just the five senses of sight, hearing, taste, touch, and smell?
In fact, we have seven senses: sight, hearing, taste, touch, smell, vestibular (balance), and proprioception.
These senses are all important for our overall well-being and development, and they can be enhanced and strengthened through play.
As a parent, you can incorporate play into your child’s daily routine to help their senses develop. Here are some ideas for each of the seven senses:
Encourage your child to look at different colours, shapes, and patterns. This can be done by playing games such as “eye spy”, taking part in arts and crafts or reading books! Books like “Tatty Ava”, where you can search and find characters and items on each page, can be beneficial to your child’s development in a fun and engaging way. It can help your child develop their visual acuity and attention to detail.
Sing songs and play music for your child. Talk to them about the different sounds they hear, such as the sound of birds chirping or the sound of a car honking. You could also go on a “sound walk” and talk about all the sounds you can hear while you are out on your walk.
Encourage your child to try different foods and flavours. Play “guess the food” by having your child close their eyes and try to guess what they are eating based on taste alone. This is also a great tactic to help fussy eaters try new foods!
Play with different textures, such as sand, play dough, or fluffy blankets. Encourage your child to touch and explore objects with their hands to help them learn about the world around them.
Play games like “What’s that smell?” and have your child try to guess the smell of different objects, such as spices or flowers. This can also be incorporated into a taste game, by encouraging your child to smell foods before tasting them.
Vestibular (Balance): Encourage your child to climb, hop, skip, and jump to help them develop their balance and coordination. Our vestibular system can also support a child’s ability to read and write. Check out this article on how balance and coordination are so important in helping children develop reading and writing skills.
Proprioception: This sense is all about body awareness and the ability to control movement. Encourage your child to crawl, roll, and move their body in different ways to help them develop their proprioception.
So Just Play!
Incorporating play into your child’s daily routine is a fun and effective way to help their senses develop. By engaging in activities that stimulate their senses, your child will be able to better understand and interact with the world around them. So next time you’re looking for a fun and educational activity to do with your child, try using play that targets one of their seven senses!