Summer sensory garden

A garden is a beautiful place, but have you ever thought about how your 5 senses can help you enjoy your garden?

You'll Need

  • Plants
  • Pots
  • Soil
  • Scissors
  • Notebook

Learning Stages

By Becca Ross
Kindergarten & First Grade Teacher

Becca is a schoolteacher and blogs at She loves to cook, bake, garden, sew, quilt, teach and simply spend time with her family. She strives to find art in everyday things.

There are so many senses to explore in the garden! From tasting your herbs and vegetables to listening to the sounds of the animals, your garden is an exciting place for learning.

Start by gathering a few plants with sensory qualities from your garden. While you gather, look for plants that have an interesting fragrance, plants that look visually different from one another, plants with interesting textures, or plants that you might try cooking with.

As you plant with your child, talk about each plant's qualities by sight, touch and smell. Name the sense you are using as you explore. Compare and contrast plants using just one sense at a time.

Describe, orally or in writing, the plants you are experiencing. Place samples in a plant journals or a writer’s notebook. Build vocabulary development by using lots of different words like rough, smooth, feathery, prickly or fragrant.

Share your plant journal and experience with a friend or family member. Invite them to experience the plants with you!

There are great books out there about the 5 senses too! Here are a few favorites:

  • Five Senses by Dr. Jean and Dr. Holly
  • The Five Senses by Green Start
  • Five Senses Book Pack by Rebecca Rissman