How-to: get kids to wash their hands
While giving our hands a good old scrub after a visit to the bathroom or a wrestle with the family dog comes only too naturally to us adults, it’s less instinctive for our kids. In fact, teaching your children to be vigilant hand washers can be as tiresome as getting them to eat their brussell sprouts. If you’re hoarse from begging them to wash their dirty hands, here’s a simpler solution to your woes…
Hand wash for kids
Make kids hygiene more pleasant by buying a child-specific hand wash. You can purchase hand wash for kids at most supermarkets and chemists in a variety of child-friendly scents and designs.
Make germs the bad guys
If your children don’t know why they’re supposed to be washing their hands, they’re much less likely to do it. So make them aware of germs – teach them that every time they use the bathroom or pat the cat thousands of teeny-tiny invisible germs are crawling all over their hands – and germs can make them sick. Once your kids know that germs are the bad guys, they’ll be much more willing to give them the flick with a good old hand wash.
Set up a hand washing star chart next to the sink and award your kids a gold star every time they wash their hands properly with hand wash. Encourage them with a small prize when they reach a specified number of stars and watch how eagerly they start to head for the sink!
Rather than wasting your energy begging your kids to wash their hands, just focus on praising them when they actually do. Really make a point of telling them how grown up they are now they’re washing their hands all by themselves; they’ll relish the attention and praise, which will give them the extra incentive to repeat the behaviour.