With the number of coronavirus cases on the rise, hand washing has never been more important. Children are major germ carriers. so teaching them how to wash their hands properly (because telling them isn’t enough) helps not only them but everyone who comes in contact with them.). “Clean hands can stop germs from spreading from one person to another and throughout an entire community—from your home and workplace to childcare facilities and hospitals,” explains the CDC.
While the singing “Happy Birthday” twice method has been somewhat effective, one teacher’s simple hack stands out from the rest as pure genius.
Shauna Woods is a third-grade teacher at Hallsville Schools in Hallsville, Missouri posted a clever method of getting her students to wash their hands thoroughly on her classroom’s Facebook page and it has gone viral. She shared that her students would be getting stamps on their hands that read “Mrs. Wood” each morning. “We are doing our best in room 550 to keep the germs away. Students got stamps on their hands this morning. If it’s gone by the end of the day from washing their hands, they get a prize. We are trying,” she wrote.
“I’ve had a ‘Mrs. Woods’ stamp for years and have used it to stamp my classroom books,” Woods told Good Morning America. “I decided to grab that on a Monday morning, told students to wash their hands in the classroom sink and then come see their teacher — this was their morning work as we call it. I put the stamp on their hands and they were sold when I told them prizes were involved.”
That first day was “training day.” Because the kids knew they would get a prize once the stamp was gone, they wanted it off right away.
But “once we went over the expectations and purpose, it became a routine for all of my students,” she said. “Each morning since then, they get their stamp and go about their day. I check for their stamp at the end of the day and if it’s faded or gone, they get their prize.”
The teacher called it a “great motivator” for the kids. The goal, she said, is to get the kids to a place where washing their hands multiple times a day is second nature.
“Let’s be honest, some student’s biggest worry is if they’ll get to recess on time,” Woods said. “Providing a visual reminder and incentive has boosted their hygiene regiment. I even joined in on the fun and put a stamp on my hand to be their positive role model.
More Health Tips:
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- What We Know About Coronavirus and Pregnancy