Making hand washing fun for kids (and some adults too!)

Making handwashing fun…sounds like a tall order. Luckily here at HQ we found ourselves with the same dilemma – it feels like we are constantly at the sink! As it turns out we discovered that rather than just having to stick to singing Happy Birthday twice there are lots of other things you can sing that take the magical 20 seconds (or just over!) Giggling at each other singing random kids songs from the bathroom we suddenly realised there was something to be said for this! Here are our top tips for keeping children (and us apparently) entertained whilst washing paws!

Things to sing

Of course the possibilities are endless, but here are a few ideas to get you started:

  • Postman Pat theme tune 
  • A sailor went to sea sea sea
  • Baby Shark (x2 according to Jae, I refused to let the song in my head so couldn’t test it!)
  • In The Night Garden theme (we both sang it word perfectly and the youngest Scratchlet is 9! Yes – it will stay with you forever too!!)

    Making hand washing fun for kids (and some adults too!)

    Good luck getting this lot out of your head…ever!!!

Tess’s personal favourite idea: 

Put a piece of paper on the bathroom door counting down 10 to 1. Every time they wash their hands get them to sing Ten Green Bottles but in descending order. One hand wash is one number ticked off. If you have more than one child you can set a challenge to see who washed their hands most! 

Things to do

Not up for a sing song? 

How about using those 20 second blocks to get a bit of learning done? No, not spellings or times tables (although I did think about it for my 9 year old! Poor child…) Tell them on the way to the bathroom that they have 20 seconds to tell you something you don’t know about their day, their thoughts, something that made them laugh…take it in turns. It’s tough getting information out of little ones sometimes, it’s amazing what you can learn in 20 seconds, trust me!

Up for a family challenge?

Jae and I experimented one day with drawing a shape with biro (Jae) and sharpie (me) at the base of our thumbs. It’s an area that we often miss washing hands (especially little people) so we thought it would be interesting to see how long both lasted. After laughing at the fact we looked like we’d gone and got REALLY bad tattoes done we did handwash Round 1. The biro came off almost immediately. It took the sharpie until bedtime! So get creative and draw on your child! It’s a good way to monitor if older ones actually ARE washing hands as well…yes dads we’re talking to you.

We hope something here inspires you! Happy handwashing! Please also check out the following posts which may be helpful to you:

Hand washing and Eczema

Helping Kids with Chapped Hands

Here at ScratchSleeves we don’t just share our experiences of bringing up an eczema child and favourite allergy friendly recipes, we also manufacturer and sell our unique stay-on scratch mitts and PJs for itchy babies, toddlers and children. We now stock sizes from 0-10 years in a range of colours. Visit for more information.

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