Health TipsParentingSafety

Five Ways to Teach Hand Washing

Laboratory glassware with various colored liquids with reflection on table

Kids and, believe it or not, adults often forget the importance of proper hygiene, particularly the importance of washing your hands! Here are five ways to help your little ones learn the importance of washing their hands, and to make it fun too.

1. Teach with Glitter Hands. Glitter is an effective way to teach kids the importance of washing hands because it sticks to everything, and it’s pretty tricky to wash off. Have your little ones dip their hands in glitter (which represents the germs), and have them wash with warm water and soap for 20 – 30 seconds. Since it takes around 30 seconds to wash glitter off hands, it’s the perfect visual for timing your hand washing. If you want to get more in depth with glitter hands, Totally Kids Times has a fun way to teach kids about germs and hand washing with glitter.

Use glitter to represent germs on hands
2. Read, Germs are Not For SharingThis delightful storybook provides a crash course on germs (what they are, why we need to protect ourselves from them) for your kids.

Cover for Germs Are Not for Sharing
3. Make Fun Soaps and Scrubbers. Soap that’s clad with legos (or other small toys) provides a good visual reminder and incentive to use soap when washing hands. Kids Activities Blog and Rockin’ Boys have some great ideas and recipes for making your own soap.

Lego Soap
4. Sing! A short and catchy 30-second song while hand washing not only teaches kids how long to keep their hands soaped, but makes the experience fun! Click the images below to download our very own Woozy coloring page and hand wash poster.

Woozy Wash Your Hands
5. Set a Routine. Establishing a daily routine with little ones where they wash their hands after returning from school or before eating a meal, and after playing outside, using the bathroom, or playing with other children, helps reinforce the times at which children should wash their hands. Routines also provide a great way for parents to lead by example.

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