Sniff and Tell

Guess what different smells are.

  • Target Age:  4-7 
  • Learning Goals:  vocabulary, oral language development, science
  • Related Episode: Martha Makes Scents, Martha Smells

Target Words

aroma, fragrance, fresh, perfume, odor, reek, scent, smell, stench, stink, whiff


  • blindfold (use a bandana or sock)
  • household items to smell such as shampoo, mustard, cinnamon, an orange, dirty socks, laundry detergent, perfume, cheese, and so on


Gather things you have on hand that have different smells. Blindfold your child and put something under his or her nose to smell. See if your child can guess what it is! Ask questions and make comments such as:

  • What does this aroma remind you of?
  • Take a whiff of this.
  • Which scent do you like better?
  • Do you think this smells fragrant or stinky?

Take it Further
Invite your child to create an original perfume or potpourri using objects from nature (pine needles, grass, rose petals, etc.), spices (cloves, cinnamon, lemon peel, etc.), bits of soap and what ever else appeals.

Related Books
  • You Can’t Smell a Flower with Your Ear! by Joanna Cole
    Discover how your sense of taste gets help from your sense of smell in this science book full of fun games and experiments.
  • The Stolen Smell by Martha Hamilton
    A greedy baker wants to charge his poor neighbor just for smelling the aromas coming from his bakery.
  • Skunkdog by Emily Jenkins
    A lonely dog with no sense of smell makes friends with a skunk.

DW's Unicorn Adventure


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