Handwashing to really remove the germs

We've had a sick week, and while I know that frequent and thorough hand washing is one of the better ways to prevent this, I can't always control how the kids choose to, or not to wash. Sometimes I hear the water running for awhile and their little voices singing to keep track of time, other times the water is off almost before it turned on.

To help the kids visualize what they usually can't see, we coated their damp hands with our mildest cinnamon (try glitter instead) and pretended it was germs, dirt, and bacteria that we needed to scrub off. This kept them washing as long as they needed to and made them aware of all the nooks and crannies that are easy to miss.

I have sensitive skin, and while the kids haven't complained, my hands can feel a slight cooling effect from the spicy cinnamon, similar to after handling a mildly-hot pepper. If we do this again I would probably try it with glitter, which would require more cleaning to get off anyway.

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Amy S. said...

Great idea! We'll definitely try it with glitter :)

Becca said...

This is such a simple yet excellent idea. I think that I am not only going to do this with my daughters but also with my Daisy troop. I bet that you really have to scrub for a while to get it off! Thanks for always thinking!


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Rachel said...

I love it! Glitter is horrible to get off, probably harder than germs! lol

Anonymous said...

I tried this with my kids and they really seemed to get that they need to really clean their hands to get the germs off. Thanks!

MaggieBrown said...

Proper handwashing- definitely great advice! There is something more you can do to keep your children from catching AND passing germs: Germy Wormy Germ Awareness for Germ Transportation Vehicles ages 2 –7. Parents, schools and daycare centers are raving about it.


Give kids a PLACE to give their germs to – instead of you!

Holly - tutus & turtles said...

Thanks Maggie, I'll check it out.