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Handwashing is the first line of defense against germs.

Good handwashing protects against the spread of common illnesses, like colds, as well as much more serious illnesses, like meningitis, flu, hepatitis A, and most types of infectious diarrhea.  Unfortunately, statistics show that about 95% of people in the U.S. do not wash their hands properly.

At Kinderberry Hill, we take great steps to teach and practice proper handwashing.  Our teachers and school nurses make this a priority!! Our school nurses teach the children proper handwashing by using a fun classroom activity.  Using a blacklight and a lotion that simulates germs, children can see where germs like to hide. After applying the “germ” lotion, the blacklight illuminates where the “germs” are hiding. Children can then see how washing hands properly gets rid of most of the germs, while washing improperly does not. This fun activity encourages and teaches the importance of proper handwashing to get rid of illness-causing germs.

BUT…What exactly is proper handwashing?  Proper handwashing is washing ALL surfaces of the hands thoroughly. Using warm water, soap, and a rigorous scrubbing motion, you should wash fingers, between fingers, palms, backs of the hands, and the wrists.

You should wash your hands frequently throughout the day but specifically after using the restroom, wiping or blowing your nose, coughing or sneezing, and handling anything dirty.  You should also wash before and after serving food to your little ones, as well as before and after you eat.  When in doubt, if your hands look, feel, or smell unclean…Wash them!

Proper handwashing also means that you should wash for 20 seconds.  Twenty seconds is about as long as it takes to sing the “ABC SONG” once or “Happy Birthday” twice.  So pick a song, and start singing while you scrub those germs away!

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