Coronavirus: educating kids about the virus – and handwashing

Coronavirus: educating kids about the virus – and handwashing

Don’t be anxious about it advises psychologist

Coronavirus concerns abound at the moment and sorting the sound advice from the scaremongering can be a difficult task. Help – and common sense – to the rescue then, with a sensible article on the whole advice / hand washing approach which recently appeared on the New York Times Parenting website.

Jessica Grose’s excellent piece addresses potential concerns that teachers, parents and carers may have and how to overcome them, in the form of considered advice from a paediatric infectious disease specialist, two psychologists and a paediatrician.

Keep your own fears in check, but take their concerns seriously

Make sure not to worry youngsters by appearing to panic yourself – address your own worries and concerns before discussing coronavirus issues with children says a clinical psychologist and professor at the University of Minnesota, Abi Gewirtz, Ph.D.

“We don’t want our children to feel like the world is so scary” she advises.

Show them how to wash their hands – and why it’s important

Wash for at least twenty seconds, (using the techniques outlined in the educational video below), preferably using soap and running water – and make sure that they dry them thoroughly afterwards says the report, which quotes pediatric infectious disease specialist Dr. Rebecca Pellett Madan, M.D.

“For people of all ages, hand washing is preferable to hand sanitizer…”

Dr Madan also mentions a number of reasons why soap and water washes are preferable to hand gel usage, not least because they’re unlikely to be given the chance to evaporate fully – essential for them to be effective.

How to Talk to Kids About Coronavirus »


How to teach children effective hand washing techniques

The Kiddiwash range of warm water hand wash units are perfect for smaller hands – and are ideal where a portable solution is required.

Whether you require a larger wheeled unit such as the KiddiSynk, or the ultra portable Kiddiwash Xtra, you can ensure that all children in your care are able to wash their hands whether inside or out.

Hand washing – the most important lesson a child can learn!

Hand washing with soap and water is an essential lifelong skill. Here, children in your care can learn the ten simple steps that show how to wash hands effectively.