How many teeth do you have? There are 20 deciduous teeth, adults have 28-32 teeth.
Are they all the same? Talk about different shapes and sizes of teeth.
Look at the plastic animal teeth, let the children try to guess what each animal is. Talk about their different teeth and see if the children know what these animals eat.
Sharp teeth – canines and incisors – work like knives, slicing into meat for carnivorous animals. Big, strong molars grind like a pestle and mortar, breaking down the cellulose in plants for herbivores.
Are humans carnivores or herbivores?
Most humans are omnivores, we have sharp canines and incisors and also big, strong molars.
Again, if you don’t have one of these (are there people who don’t keep giant foam tooth models lying around?), you could just draw a big picture.
Give out pictures of tooth and pieces of felt. Show the sample felt tooth. Encourage the children to cut out their templates, then use them to make felt pieces to build their own felt tooth puzzles.
Break for drink and snack
Does anyone know why we need to brush our teeth? Hopefully children will talk about fresh breath, removing stains, brushing away food that can cause decay.
What makes a good toothpaste? Alkaline to neutralise acids, nice smell, slightly abrasive.
Give the children some toothpaste to look at, ask them what they think of the toothpaste’s smell, use pH strips to test the pH of the toothpaste.
We’re going to have a go at making our own toothpaste. I have salt – which is slightly abrasive – baking powder – which is a base – essential oils so you can select a flavour, and water to make it into a paste.
Give the children time to mix their own toothpastes.
What do we use mouthwash for? Killing bacteria and making our breath smell nice.
We’re going to have a go at making our own mouthwash. There are two choices for the basic mixture: plain water, or water infused with cloves – which are antibacterial. Then there are two choices of additional oils: myrrh or teatree, both of which are antiseptic. Think about what you want your mouthwash to achieve and which scents appeal to you.
Let the children mix their mouthwash recipes together and pour them into bottles.
Some children may wish to decorate their mouthwash bottles.