Monday, January 4, 2010

Children's Hand Washing Activitiy - Glitter Germs

I came across a fun activity, at A to Z Teacher Stuff ,last night, that's just right for teaching children about proper hand washing. I also discovered a free, hand washing video at Brain Pop Jr, that complimented it perfectly. If all the germ books I reserved at the library had come in today, I could just about call it perfect - but nothing ever comes together that smoothly.

As to the hand washing, I gave the children a liberal dab of lotion, to spread on their hands.

Then, we added some glitter. I cut open an old tube of glitter glue, that had been rolling around in one of the drawers for ages, and wiped a little onto each of their hands. The glue was pretty well all dried up, but the glitter mixed nicely with the lotion, and spread across their hands. I explained to them, that the glitter was supposed to be the germs on their hands, that are normally too tiny to see.

First, I had one of them try to wipe the glitter germs, and lotion, off with a napkin. It didn't work very well.

Then, I had a couple of them try to rinse the glitter off with cold water. It worked a little better, but still left some glitter germs behind.

Finally, they all washed with warm water, and soap, and then dried their hands on a clean towel, which of course, removed all the glitter germs from their hands. I was very relieved it all came off, not only because it proved the point of the importance of washing with soap, but also because my youngest son is not the type who likes to have dirty hands, and a stray piece of glitter might have really ruined his, and by extension my, day!

It's great to be a homeschooler.


Ticia said...

This is on my list of activities to do with my kids, because seriously they need to understand why they need to wash their hands.
No luck with the Magic School Bus book at the library, I'm sure we'll be at Half Price sometime in the next few days, maybe they'll have it.
Oh, and I left you an award over at my blog.

Ticia said...

Sadly, zig-zagging doesn't really seem to help, but it lets me believe I'm harder to see. Bath was not the great success I was hoping for, just as the tub filled up I heard the distinctive wail of a kid crying followed a few minutes later by another one chanting for me. Not, what I was hoping for.

Chrissi said...

We did this at my son's cyber school's "Fall Into Healthy Habits" event last November. However, it was a slick presentation done by two county health officials and they used fancy glow-in-the-dark CSI powder and a blacklight box to prove their point. My kiddo is so germaphobic, he wouldn't even touch the tennis ball covered in glow-in-the-dark powder that was passed around after seeing half a dozen other kids picking their noses first. ;) I'm so glad to see there's an approachable method for doing this at home!

Chrissi, Cyber School Mom

Kim said...

This is a great activity! I'll have to try it with my son.

Anonymous said...

This is such a fun idea! Thanks so much for sharing it! My children are actually a bit on the obsessive side of hand washing, if they weren't I would totally do this. I still would love to but I'm afraid it would send my youngest over the OCD side of germ avoidance...since he's already slightly there. :)

Tonia said...

Great idea! We are doing a human body study this term and this will go perfectly with one of the lessons! Enjoying your blog!

Natalie PlanetSmarty said...

I didn't get to this post before - what an awesome idea! I might actually even get some loose glitter for this terrific "proof of concept". Thanks for sharing it.

Jacque said...

Hi. I shared this very same activity over on my blog, and decided to share your URL with my followers over there. I used one of your images to help reference your activity. I hope that's alright.
If you would like, you may grab a featured button on my sidebar. I just enjoy lifting up others who do so much for their kids... and so this is my way of saying, "Keep up the good work!"