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How do you teach a child hygiene?

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Quick Answer

Use games to teach a child hygiene. These games can include glitter hands, germ transfer or a matching game. Hygiene charades is also a fun, interactive way to teach a child hygiene.

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Full Answer

When using the glitter hands game to teach a child the proper time needed to wash their hands, place a small amount of glitter on their hands and ask them to use soap and water to remove it. Sticky glitter takes at least 30 seconds to remove. When they are finished, explain that they should be scrubbing and rinsing their hands for at least that long when washing.

To teach children how germs are spread by touching, use the germ transfer game. Cover hands with washable paint and pretend to sneeze. Recreate a usual routine by walking around the room and touching things that would normally be touched. Explain to the child that each painted handprint represents the germs spread after hands are not washed. Have the child count the number of infected surfaces to reinforce the importance of hand washing.

Use a matching game to teach a child tools needed for personal hygiene. One set of cards displays pictures of toothpaste, soap, fingernail clippers or a toothbrush. The other shows the body parts on which those tools are used. Have the child match the correct tool to the correct body part.

Hygiene charades is a fun group activity to reinforce proper hygiene methods and ensure that these methods are being used correctly. Have the child pick a hygiene habit such as brushing their teeth and mimic the act. Have other children guess what hygiene method is being displayed, and then discuss the importance and proper way to perform the method.

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