Wash This Way

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In this activity on page 4 of the PDF, learners investigate the importance of washing their hands. Learners "dirty" their hands with cooking spray and glitter and then clean their hands using various hand-washing techniques. Learners compare the hand-washing techniques and discuss how germs can be harmful. Safety notes: Safety goggles are required. Follow all of Milli's safety tips on the bottom of the page.

Quick Guide

Preparation Time:
Under 5 minutes

Learning Time:
10 to 30 minutes

Estimated Materials Cost:
$1 - $5 per student

Age Range:
Ages 6 - 14

Resource Types:
Activity, Experiment/Lab Activity


Materials List (per student)

  • Non-stick cooking spray
  • Ultra-fine glitter
  • Timer or watch with a second hand
  • Access to a sink with warm and cold water, soap, and paper towels
  • Data sheet (Draw 8 small outlines of hands on a sheet of paper)
  • Four helpers
  • Safety goggles


  • Engineering and Technology
    • Computing
      • Information Technology
  • Life Sciences
    • Cells
    • Diversity of Life
      • Viruses and Bacteria
    • Human Body
      • Muscles and Skin
      • Health and Nutrition
      • Immune System
  • Physical Sciences
    • Chemistry
      • Chemical Reactions
  • The Nature of Science
    • The Scientific Process
      • Conducting Investigations
      • Gathering Data
      • Formulating Explanations
      • Communicating Results


To use this activity, learners need to:

  • see
  • see color
  • touch

Learning styles supported:

  • Uses STEM to solve real-world problems
  • Involves hands-on or lab activities


Foreign language versions of this resource:

Access Rights:

  • Free access


  • Department of Volunteer Support, American Chemical Society


  • All rights reserved, American Chemical Society, 2011