Healthy Hand Washing Habits for You and Your Little One
Keeping Our Hands Clean!
National Handwashing Awareness Week is almost upon us! Going from December 5th to December 11th, it’s the perfect time to make sure your little one knows the importance of keeping their hands clean. Since personal hygiene starts with cleaning our hands, it’s a good way for your little one to practice good hygiene skills that they will continue to use as they get older. The rise of COVID as well as the seasonal flu definitely makes handwashing a bit more important, especially since most germs are transmitted by hands, so making sure your little one washes their hands frequently and well is key!
Here are some HANDY tips for encouraging your little one as they learn this basic skill:
1. Get Set Up:
Before you help your little one understand the importance of handwashing, make sure that you have the basic necessities set up! Use plain soap and water, as antibacterial soaps can actually sometimes lead to antibiotic resistance. Also, it’s a good idea to make sure the sink is easily accessible for your little one! They will be more likely to seek out handwashing if it is more accessible for them, so either finding a sink they can reach or using a stepstool of some kind is a good idea.
2. Go Into How:
After you’ve gotten your handwashing materials all set up, talk about the process of handwashing. Show your little one the process for washing their hands. Introduce them to the difference between hot and cold water, and help them find the perfect handwashing temperature (usually 120 degrees Fahrenheit is recommended). Show them how to scrub their hands well, as well as how much soap they ought to use. Equally important is telling them the length of time they should be scrubbing!
3. Inform Them When and Why:
Little ones rarely like to do things without knowing why! A good tip for getting your little one to want to clean their hands more often is to tell them why it’s an important thing for them to do. Make sure your child knows (in a simple fashion) how germs can harm their health or make them sick. You can even turn germ-hunting into a game, and tell your little one to use soap as the key to helping them beat the germs at their job! This will also be helped if you let your little one know when they should be washing their hands. Remember, this skill may be a new one for your little one, so a teeny reminder never hurts.
4. Set a Good Example:
You are always going to be your little one’s biggest role model, so it’s really important that you encourage these skills by practicing them yourself! Offer to wash hands together until your little one gets the hang of it, and make sure you practice the hygiene that you tell your little one about. If all else fails, introduce hand sanitizers as a solid secondary alternative to a scrub.
Enjoy Early Learning & Development Today!
Trying to keep your little one from getting sick can be tough, but by teaching them the importance of washing their hands, you can set up an efficient first line of defense against germs that will prove amazingly helpful in the long run!
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Hi, I'm Miss Charlotte!
Miss Charlotte is an Education Director by trade, and a mom by heart. All 200+ of our DIY projects were created by Miss Charlotte, with the help of her expert DIY assistant—Her 4 year old daughter! With a MST degree in Early Childhood Education and 15 years of teaching experience, her blogs and DIY projects have been an incredible resource for our Playgarden Prep schools. We hope that your family loves them as much as we do!