As the back-to-school bell gets ready to ring, parents and teachers are busy readying their students for a first-rate year! Promoting safety, health, and wellness in the classroom are sure-fire ways to ensure that students are off to a stellar start.
By putting up posters and helpful reminders on the school walls, you can help keep the number of sick days to a minimum.
Keep Germs from Sprouting up in Your Classroom
As the school year gets underway, classrooms become breeding grounds for millions of tiny bacteria, causing quite the stir as sniffles and sneezes are constantly whirring in the background. Healthy classrooms promote healthy minds, and promoting healthful practices every day will help keep kids in the classroom and learning at the head of the class.
All That Glitters – Germs Are Everywhere
First things first! Help children to “see” how germs travel by having students participate in a “sparkling” science experiment that demonstrates the importance of keeping germs at bay. Begin by having each student rub a thin layer of lotion on his or her hands. Next, sprinkle some glitter on each student’s hands, using one color for half the class and another color for the remaining students. Have the children go around the classroom, shaking hands, opening doors and closets, picking up books, and moving about as usual. After a few minutes, have everyone look at their hands and see that the “glitter germs” have easily spread throughout the class. Finally, have everyone wash their hands with water only, demonstrating that the germs are still there. Then, bring on the soap suds and watch the germs wash down the drain!
Promote Practices for Good Health and Hygiene
Establishing healthful habits requires repetition. Remind students every day to do their part to keep germs away. A great place to start is by promoting healthy restroom practices. Proper hand washing is essential for preventing the spread of germs and disease.
While a simple sign will easily remind older children to properly wash their hands, teach the little ones to use lots of soap and water and sing a favorite tune before rinsing. You can customize a hand washing sign with a simple message, give a step-by-step tutorial, or warn of the danger of spreading germs.
Setting up hand sanitizing stations around your classroom is an easy way to prevent the spread of bothersome germs. With just a small squeeze of sanitizer before playtime or meals, after recess, or anytime throughout the day, this practice will surely help keep those germs from invading your classroom. Be sure to put a station at the classroom door, where students can sanitize every time they come or go.
Creating a classroom cleanup routine will encourage everyone to be mindful of daily responsibilities while helping to keep germs away. Have your “classroom cleanup crew” focus on a different area each day, using disinfecting wipes (they’re handy, neat, and disposable) to wipe down everything from desks to doorknobs. Anything little hands touch or any materials that are shared among students should be on the list.
Encouraging mindful behaviors and healthy habits as the school year begins is sure to keep germs out of your classroom and students filing in, eager to learn, play and grow.