Science Experiment for Sense of Smell
Just as your eyes give you information by seeing and your ears help you out by hearing, the nose lets you figure out what’s happening by smelling
Identifying smells is your brain’s way of telling you about your environment. Most people just think of the tongue when they think about taste. But you couldn’t taste anything without some help from the nose! The ability to smell and taste go together because odors from foods allow us to taste more fully
All five senses are related in one or the other way. Kids always enjoy learning more and more about how things work.
How does Sense of smell work?
Our nose is the organ that we use to smell. The inside of your nose is lined with a moist, thin layer of tissue called a mucous membrane. These membranes have smell receptors.
When the smell receptors are stimulated, signals travel along the olfactory nerve to the olfactory bulb. The olfactory bulb is underneath the front of your brain. Signals are sent from the olfactory bulb to other parts of the brain to be interpreted as a smell you may recognize, like apple pie fresh from the oven.
Seven primary odors:
- Musky – perfumes/aftershave
- Putrid – rotten eggs
- Pungent – vinegar
- Camphor – mothballs
- Ethereal – dry cleaning fluid
- Floral – roses (see also floral scent)
- Pepperminty – mint gum
The ability to identify odor varies among people and decreases with age. Studies show that women usually outperform men in the sense of smell. Even dogs have a better sense of smell than humans.
How does Sense of Smell protect us?
We might be able to detect toxic substances and spoiled food with our tongues, but once it’s in our mouths, it can already do us some harm. Our sense of smell operates as a guard to detect obvious dangers before we put them in our mouths.
We are doing an experiment on Sense of Smell today. What a fun experiment this is! This experiment will definitely get you, children, actively involved in understanding different smells and recognizing them too.
What all you need:
4. I have used coffee dipped in water, toothpaste, matchsticks, Tabasco, rose water and perfume. (Use your own imagination like orange juice, vinegar, fevicol etc. Try to find items your kid is familiar with)
5. Download the Printable.
Step #1. Take cotton and soak them into tabasco, rose water, toothpaste, and perfume. Burn the cotton a little bit.
Step #2. Make two cotton pieces of each smell.
Step #3. If the colour is seen wrap more cotton around it, so the colour is not visible.
Step #4. Put all the cotton pieces in cups.
Step #5. Now label all the cups from 1 to 12.
Step #6. Ask your child to smell each cotton piece and find its match.
Step #7. He/She can fill the Printable with matching the smells, good or bad smells and what they think it smells like!
The answers don’t have to be right or wrong, this experiment is for fun and learning at the same time. They probably won’t be able to figure out a few smells, but that’s exactly why we are doing these experiments; to enhance their senses.
So what are you waiting for? Hope you enjoy exploring the Sense of Smell with your child.
Some examples of scents great for children as well as adults:
1. Lavender provides calming properties and controls emotional stress. It relaxes the nerves and can help increase attention.
2. Rosemary improves memory retention and has properties that fight against exhaustion and mental fatigues.
3. Peppermint increases energy levels and encourages better concentration and clearer thinking.