Hand Washing Project Ideas for Students
A list of fun and educational project ideas for students of all ages to teach about the spread of germs and handwashing.
- Bulletin board at local health department and exhibit at the shopping mall.
- Sponsor a school poster contest after educational session presented to student classrooms.
- Make hand washing puppets for demonstration to younger students.
- Provide disposable cameras to school students. Have them take pictures at home of when people should wash their hands. Collect the cameras, develop the film, selected the "best" pictures, enlarge them and have them laminated for placemats. Placemats can be given to local restaurants not only as an educational tool, but a real conversation piece! Or, photos can be made into a "community calendar."
- Create a costumed "character" and have the character appear at schools/parades.
- Students keep hand washing diary for one week.
- Publish information in school newsletter.
- Students write a short essay. Publish the essays in the local paper. Have them "judged".
- Compose a hand washing song to the melody of Old MacDonald Had a Farm; Row, Row, Row Your Boat; or Happy Birthday.
- Conduct educational session on the topic of hand washing behavior and disease transmission to high school science classes.
- Have students swab common school surfaces and grow the specimens in petri dishes. Also touch fingers on petri dishes.
- Measure "before" and "after" effectiveness of hand washing training efforts by using the Glitter Bug Potion. (The lotion will "glow" if students haven’t thoroughly washed their hands.)
- Compute an average absenteeism rate for students or group due to illness. Conduct hand washing education and have students wash their hands up to four times each day. Measure absenteeism rate after the project.
- Perform a pre-and post-test on educational seminar participants to illustrate program effectiveness.
- Older students teach younger students hand washing technique.
- Unobtrusively observe and record length of time students wash hands before and after hand washing education session. Tie promotions into National Public Health Week during the month of April.
- Do a "Hand Washing Team Shadow Program" where students work one-on-one with school nurse, food service director, janitor in planning logistical ways to integrate hand washing and disease prevention into the school.
- Place cable TV crawl message on the public access community channel.
- Include a hand washing message on statements to city utility customers.
- Clean Hands website link on school web home page.
- Commission billboards to spread the message in the area.
- County Fair display with educational materials, and a sample bar of soap to get them started! Distribute materials at Women, Infant and Children (WIC) and immunization clinics, ambulance services and local nursing colleges.
- Exhibit at Health Fairs.
- Place hand washing signs in public restrooms across town.
- Present to pre-schools, daycares, elementary schools, association of home-school students, 4-H groups and at local festivals.
- Target special audiences — homeless shelters, churches, day camps, home health agency staff, emergency response teams, animal shelter staff, zoos, juvenile detention centers or vendors at fairs and festivals.
- PTA/PTO presentation to educate parents
- Announcements on daily school PA broadcasts.
- Develop a video on hand washing and in another language.
- Provide on-air radio and TV and newspaper interviews.