Hygiene is a topic that all parents should teach their children, as it is an important part of daily life, and it is a topic also covered in educational environments. Generally, parents cover this topic during their day-to-day interactions with their children and do not set aside specific tasks relating to the subject. However, hygiene is a fascinating subject, and there are plenty of activities that are both fun and educational. So, what are some awesome hygiene activities for children? Here are 20 effective hygiene activities for kids.
20. Personal Hygiene Activities for Kids: Play a Self-Care Game
Draw an outline of a body, or print off an image, that you can use for your child to play a self-care matching game. You will also need cards to represent different hygiene actions. For example, a toothbrush to represent cleaning your teeth, shampoo for washing hair, a tap for handwashing, and so on. Your child then turns over the cards and must match the actions to the correct part of the body.
19. Teach Kids About Flossing with Play-Doh
Flossing is an important part of dental hygiene, so children must understand why they need to do this and how to do it properly. A fantastic way to teach them this hygiene activity involves using play Play-Doh, an ice cube tray, and some string. Turn the ice cube tray over so that the holes are flat against the table, then fill some gaps between them with pieces of Play-Doh. Get your child to remove the Play-Doh from the ice cube tray with the string using a flossing action.
18. Learn About Personal Hygiene via a Brain Pop Video
Children who are visual or auditory learners sometimes benefit from watching a video as a learning activity. There are some brilliant videos about germs and hygiene aimed at children, with various topics covered in each. Your child may enjoy watching one of the engaging Brain Pop videos on the subject or completing one of the other activities on the site.
17. Literacy Activities About Hygiene: Read a Children’s Book About Germs and Hygiene
Although it may not seem like a topic that literature will cover in a fun way for children, there are some fantastic books out there with hygiene as a theme. If you want to include a literacy activity in the things you do with your kids about hygiene, then read a children’s book about germs and hygiene together, then discuss what you have learned from the book.
16. Create a Bathroom Hygiene Chart Together
Charts are an effective way of getting children to complete tasks, and they are more likely to do so if they are involved in making the chart. For this reason, Teaching Expertise says you should create a bathroom chart with your kids to teach them about hygiene. When creating the chart, use a combination of words and visual clues for the different tasks, especially if you have younger kids. Include tasks such as putting the lid down on the toilet and washing hands. If you laminate the chart, your child can use a whiteboard pen to tick off the tasks when they have done them, and then you can wipe down the chart later.
15. Do a Dental Health Experiment Using Eggs
Sugar has a similar effect on eggshells to what it has on tooth enamel. Therefore, eggs are an excellent resource to use to teach children about the impact of sugar in their diet and the importance of good dental hygiene. Feels Like Home suggests an effective way to demonstrate what sugar does to their teeth is to soak eggs in a sugary soda and observe the impact it has on the shells.
14. Play the Germ Detective’s Game
One way to make learning about germs and hygiene fun is to turn an educational activity into a game, and a great example is the germ detective’s game. As germs are invisible to the naked eye, it is hard for children to imagine how they are transferred to different surfaces, and this game gives a visual demonstration. You will need a substance that will stick to your hands and the surfaces in your that will not leave a permanent mark. Flour and glitter are excellent examples.
Put your hands into the flour or glitter so that some sticks to the natural moisture in your skin. Explain to the children that the flour or glitter represents the way that germs stick to your hands and are easily transferred to other places. Get the children to close their eyes or turn round while you touch various surfaces around the room. The children must then act as detectives to seek out the germs.
13. Printable Hygiene Activities for Kids: Complete a Hygiene Word Search
If you want an easy hygiene activity, then printable activities are ideal as you can simply print off the sheets and leave your children to complete the tasks. One of the best options for hygiene topics is printable word searches, as it teaches your children about the words associated with hygiene and germs. There are options available to suit different ages and abilities.
12. Play a Truth or Myth Game
Click View says that you can use fun games as an effective hygiene activity for kids, and one option is a truth or myth game. There are many myths relating to hygiene, such as you need lots of soap to get rid of germs. You can help your children to differentiate between facts and fiction by writing some sentences that are true and some that are not. Give the kids two cards; one that says myth and the other that says truth. As you read out the different sentences, they should guess whether it is a truth or myth by holding up the appropriate card.
11. Do a Water Spray Coughing Activity
Covering your mouth when you cough or sneeze can reduce the spread of infection. You can do a simple activity with your kids to help them understand why mouth covering is so important. Fill a water spray bottle with colored water. Pretend to cough or sneeze and spray the water bottle simultaneously. It demonstrates to kids how coughing and sneezing disperse tiny amounts of bacteria and virus-carrying fluid into the air. Discuss with your children how far the water traveled.
10. Use Dental Plaque Tablets
Many children do not like brushing their teeth, or they moan about the length of time their parents insist on them brushing each day. Often, children do not fully understand how much plaque is in their mouths or the impact it has on their teeth and gums. An easy activity to help your children understand more about dental hygiene is to buy some plaque tablets, which are cheap and widely available. Get them to brush their teeth for less than the recommended minimum time of two minutes, then ask them if they think their teeth are clean. Most children believe that they have brushed their teeth enough. Next, get them to chew on a plaque tablet, which will highlight the plaque remaining in their mouths and prove why they need to brush for longer. They then need to continue brushing their teeth until all the discolored areas are removed.
9. Do a Germ Spreading Demonstration with Flour
As children cannot see germs, hygiene is a difficult concept to understand. They cannot see how the germs on their hands will spread to other surfaces and then onto people. Ask your child to dip their hands into a bowl of flour and tell them the flour represents the germs on your hands. Then, tell your child to put their hand on a piece of black or colored sugar paper, as this demonstrates to them how germs are transferred from them to other areas.
8. Print Off a Kids Hygiene Quiz
Before you have begun doing hygiene activities with kids, you can test their knowledge by printing off a quiz on the topic and seeing what they already know. Once you have completed several of the practical activities with them to increase their knowledge, you can have another quiz to see if their knowledge has increased.
7. Learn About Hygiene in the Kitchen
Mostly, children learn by doing rather than just reading about a subject. A way to get them hands-on to learn about hygiene is to get them cooking in the kitchen, which many children love to do with their parents. As you go along, teach them about different aspects of kitchen hygiene, such as handwashing, using different chopping boards, disinfecting worktops, and storing food at the correct temperatures. If you discuss these topics as you go along, your kids won’t feel like you are giving them a lesson.
6. Make Homemade Soap
Soap is an item used in homes worldwide as part of daily hygiene routines. If you want to enjoy a creative activity with your child, then making your own soap is a brilliant idea. The Spruce Crafts says that the four most common soap-making methods are melt & pour, cold process, hot process, and rebatching. Each of the methods has pros and cons, they take different times to complete, and some options are more suited to specific age groups than others.
5. Creative Hygiene Activities for Kids: Design a Handwashing Poster
A creative hygiene activity for children is to create a handwashing poster. Children can either make their poster about why handwashing is so important or create a step-by-step guide to the proper handwashing procedure.
4. Create a ‘Germ-Filled’ Glove to Wash
If your child is having trouble visualizing germs, there are activities you can do that will help them understand better. A simple activity is to draw spots on a surgical glove with a whiteboard marker to represent germs, then blow up the glove and fasten it with a knot. Many children underestimate the time they need to wash their hands to remove all the germs, and getting them to spend one minute washing the glove with a basic hand soap will show them that not all the marks are removed. Set a timer and get them to wash the glove for a full two minutes, and they will see that all the ‘germs’ are removed.
3. Musical Hygiene Activities for Kids: Sing a Hygiene Song
Younger children, especially those of kindergarten age, will enjoy any activity involving music. There are several hygiene songs that you can sing to the tune of nursery rhymes, or you can make up hygiene-related lyrics. Adding simple musical instruments, such as drums, maracas, or a tambourine, will add to the fun for your child.
2. Learn the Proper Hand Washing Routine Together
Staff who work in care settings have a strict handwashing protocol regarding the correct procedure and length of time you should wash your hands. During the coronavirus pandemic, many governments began sharing more hand washing information with citizens to reduce the spread of the disease. Teaching your children the correct handwashing procedure will not only reduce the risk of them becoming ill, but it will also give them an important life skill.
1. One of the Best Hygiene Activities for Kids: Make Your Own Germs
According to Kid Pillar, one of the best and most effective hygiene activities for kids is to make your own germs. Children often do not understand hygiene because they cannot see the germs as they are microscopic. Visual stimuli can give them a better understanding of what germs look like, which will help them understand other germ-related activities. The easiest way to do this is to create your own germ model. First, roll play dough or clay into small balls. Then, cut cotton buds into half, and stick them around the clay or dough so one end is inside the material and the other is protruding.