Germs are everywhere in our classrooms. Like everywhere. Because kids make a lot of germs. At the beginning of each school year we spend a week learning about germs and how we can stay healthy. And it definitely has an effect because my students will reference this research project all year long.
To learn about germs, we use our Germs Research Project and do some hands-on experiments to learn about germs and handwashing.
All of our TKS Research Projects start with a shema map. Students share their schema (or what they know) about germs. We use sticky notes and add all of the schema to the chart. As we learn about germs we can come back and discuss our schema!
After our schema map, we use read-alouds and videos to learn about germs. We record our learning on our graphic organizers.
After we learn about germs, we learn how to wash our hands. And then we do a little experiment to see if we do a good job washing!
For this experiment, you will need Glo Germ Soap and a blacklight. It’s found on Amazon (CLICK THE IMAGE!)
Basically, you shine the blacklight on students’ hands. Nothing really shows up. Then you squirt Glo Germ into their hands, they rub them together and you shine the light again. Now they’re glowing. You’ll also see their clothes, arms, face, and the floor glowing from them touching everything. This is the perfect time to stop and talk about how fast and easy germs spread. In just a few minutes, everything is glowing because we touch everything. Have students wash their hands. Shine the light again to see how well they did at getting the germs off.
Another fun experiment to show that germs are everywhere is to swab the classroom and grow the germs! Students choose an object to swab, they swab the object and you gently rub the swab over the gel in the dish. It sits for 24 hours and you can see how dirty each object in the classroom is.
This is the kit we used for this lesson. Click the image to get this on Amazon.
Our suggested books and videos as well as everything you need to learn about germs is included in our Germs Research Project!