Social Studies/Sensory Unit: The Tastes & Textures of India

Social Studies, Geography, and Sensory Preschool Lesson Plan

I {Kayla} teach a preschool class at my church on Wednesday nights and we recently did a lesson that I thought would be fun for any preschool classroom! Perfect to include in your geography/social studies unit, we explored the region and culture of India using our five senses {with a few extras thrown in, of course!}.

The next two ‘stations’ in our exploration of India lesson incorporated the tastes and textures of India...

The Tasting Station {pictured above}

Since our preschoolers will get a chance to taste some traditional Indian fare this coming week during our kids' "Mission Blast" {the older children have been working hard for several weeks, preparing fun games, crafts, food, etc. for our kiddos} and later at our church-wide missions festival, "A Taste of India", we decided to take a different route - inviting our kids to sample the local fruits. India has all sorts of climates/landscapes so we chose to focus on the tropical fruits that students were more familiar with.

 

I set out each type of fruit onto colorful plates and added labels, then invited each child to fix a plate. [NOTE: I had mini cocktail forks for them to use when serving themselves and eating - the kiddos thought they were the coolest things ever!] To go along with the station, I created taste-testing cards where the kiddos could mark whether they liked the fruit, disliked it, or decided not try it.

Social Studies, Geography, and Sensory Preschool Lesson Plans
I printed the taste-testing template onto 'Far East' themed card stock 

The Texture Center

I was super bummed that I didn't get any pictures of this station, but I'm certain you'll get the gist! I had several things going on at this station...

  • First, students explored the fabrics of India. I got some fabric samples from Jo-Ann Fabrics - silk, brocade, and cotton - and mounted the swatches onto a piece of poster board. To go with the board, I found pictures and created posters of traditional Indian clothing. As students touched the various fabrics, we discussed what they would be used for, what they would wear in India if they were a boy/girl {today and traditional garments}, etc.
  • Second, students discovered the animals of India, using play dough to sculpt popular regional animals - tigers, peacocks, cows, Asian elephants, etc.

Hope you enjoyed this sensory discovery of India - my preschoolers certainly did! It took a bit of work, putting together and coordinating the various centers, but it was definitely worth it!


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