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How to Wash Your Hands

Before I had the Little Bee, there were so many things I didn’t realize you actually had to teach a child. Things we do so habitually that we don’t even remember learning. How to use a spoon, how to hold a pencil…how to wash our hands. By the time the LB was tall enough to reach the bathroom faucet using a step-stool, she must have seen me wash my hands hundreds of times. I figured she’d naturally follow the process on her own (that is, if I’d even given it that much thought at all). But instead, this is what I saw…

Turn on water, quickly pass hands through water stream, turn off water, dry hands.

Soap? Nope. Scrubbing? Nope.

We then chatted about why we wash our hands, and why it’s such an important thing to do well. I paired that with the purchase of a cute and informative book about germs (Usborne’s Lift-the-Flap “What are Germs?”), then showed her the exact steps I wanted her to take in the washing process.

This free printable details the steps I showed her. It may help to print it out and post it by the sink since it’s going to take frequent reminders and coaching before thorough washing becomes a habit. The graphic shows the use of the ScrubBEE, but it isn’t critical to have one in order to make this process work!

If you have other suggestions for making the hand-washing process more fun or more thorough, I’d love to hear them in the comments!

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