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Teaching Children the Importance of Handwashing

Handwashing - Hero Image 1
Wash Your Hands – A Right To Play Song and Game

We protect, educate and empower children all over the world using the power of play. In the midst of the Covid-19 (Coronavirus) outbreak, we’re using games to teach young children in our programs the importance of washing our hands thoroughly and regularly to prevent the spread of the virus.

You can do the same! Here’s one of our games. It’s called “Wash Your Hands”.

Teach the children the song below before explaining the game. Sing the song to them once.

Next, sing it line by line, asking the children to repeat each line.

Finally, practice singing the song together at least twice before you play the game. Be sure to demonstrate the hand actions while you sing.

🎵 SONG 🎵

To the tune of Frère Jacques or Brother John

Wash your hands, (rub hands together)

Wash your hands, (rub hands together)

With some soap,

With some soap,

If you do not do this, (point and shake finger)

If you do not do this, (point and shake finger)

You’ll get sick,

You’ll get sick.

Now, divide the children into groups of 6-8.

Ask each group to sit in a circle, and give each group 1 bar of soap.

Next, explain and demonstrate that:

  • The children will pass the soap in a clockwise direction from child to child around the circle.
  • While they pass the soap, they will sing the song.
  • The child holding a bar of soap when the song ends must run around the circle and return to his/her spot.

Continue the game until every child has had a chance to run around the circle at least once. Be sure that there is enough space between the children and behind them so that they will not injure themselves when they run.

Handwashing - Generic 1 - In-Stream crop



  • What does the song tell us will happen if we don’t wash our hands?


  • Does anyone know some of the kinds of sicknesses you can get from not washing your hands?
  • Can anyone show me how they wash their hands with the soap?
  • What do you usually do to know if you have done a good job of washing your hands?
  • When are the times when you usually wash your hands?


  • What do you think we can do to help us remember to always wash our hands?
  • When should we wash our hands from now on?


Give two bars of soap to each team. The two children who are left with the soap must then race to see who can get back to his or her spot first.