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Fun experiment to do with children to show the importance of washing hands

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Fun experiment to do with children to show the importance of washing hands
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We are often horrified by some people’s lack of hygiene, especially those who touch everything after going to the toilet without washing their hands.  This can often include items like you mobile phone or railings or handles on public transport….  However washing your  hands is a very important part of understanding about personal hygiene when you are a young child.  Young children often see washing your hands as a chore that stands between them and playing or eating.  A simple and effective experiment could make your children or your class think twice about not washing their hands again. 

What you need:

  • Three airtight bags
  • Three slices of white bread
  • A glove
  • A permanent marker


1) Prepare you three bags by writing on what type of hand you used, whether it was a gloved hand, a clean hand or a dirty hand.  You can also write this on after you have filled each bag.

2) Fill the first bag with a slice of white bread that you have only touched with a gloved hand.  An then seal the bag closed.

3) Do the same with a clean hand and then lastly with the third bag touch the slice of bread with a dirty hand! You can get the whole family to touch the piece of bread or if you are doing this in front of a class you can get the whole class.

4) Put the the three packets in a prominent place.  If you are in a classroom you could even stick them to the wall.

5) Now all you need to do is to watch how each slice of bread evolves overtime.  The slice that was handled with dirty hands becomes moldy the fastest with a layer of mold covering the dirty slice.

Here is an image of the experiment carried out by a class of school children:

This fun experiment is a thousand times more interesting and impressive than a long, boring lecture about hand washing!

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