In the past year you’ve probably heard just how important it is to wash you your hands. While most adults have grasped the concept of hygienic hands quickly, little people have a harder time understanding why they need to wash their hands, and what “proper” handwashing entails in light of helping reduce the spread of Covid-19. It’s important for moms and dads to encourage their children to wash their hands for at least 40 seconds to a minute, before meals, after play time, after using the toilet and, of course, after sneezing. While handwashing sounds like a chore, you can make it something fun and enjoyable for children so they want to wash their hands.
Here are 8 hacks to get your kids to wash their hands…
A little bribery goes a long way
Let hand washing become routine, especially after participating in certain activities. Explain to your child why and when they would need to wash their hands. A star chart can work wonders in this instance. Every time they follow through on washing their hands, award them a star on a chart.
Create a “special” wash station
If you have a toddler, get a stepping stool. Get a ‘special’ towel which is reachable and a bar of soap/hand wash within reach. We prefer the Dettol No-Touch Automatic Hand Wash Dispenser.
Top tip: You can use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol if soap and water are not available.
Be a good example
Encourage your child to follow these five steps every time, by letting them watch you wash your own hands.
- Wet your hands with clean, running water (warm or cold), turn off the tap, and apply soap.
- Lather your hands by rubbing them together with the soap. Lather the backs of your hands, between your fingers, and under your nails.
- Scrub your hands for at least 20 seconds. Need a timer? Hum the “Happy Birthday” song from beginning to end twice.
- Rinse your hands well under clean, running water.
- Dry your hands using a clean towel or air dry them.
Let those germs shine and sparkle
Glitter can be a great way to show kids how easily germs are spread. Pour glitter onto your kid’s hands, pour some water over to wash their hands and let them dry their hands on a towel. Afterwards explain to them how some germs will still remain if their hands are not washed properly.
Wash your hands doo, doo, doo, doo, doo
There are lots of fun songs available on the internet. These videos can help liven things up while you teach younger kids to wash properly.
Bubbles are always a fun way to create laughter in the bathroom and will at the same time clean those nasty germs.
Germ Blow Painting Art With Straws
This germ blow painting art is perfect for preschoolers when learning about germs and washing their hands. For step-by-step instructions, click here.
Turn to books
Include some books on germs before bedtime. Kids are visual – let them see those horrible monsters that want to make them sick, and then show them how to destroy germs and stop the monsters from making them sick.