Are your kids clean, mean, hygiene machines! Well … kinda? Not yet, really? Okay, no. They are Filthy!

I wouldn’t want to over or under-dramatise anything but given the current global situation it seems this would be a reasonable time for a post about general cleanliness and hygiene.

Where to start? Well, as with most things, by establishing good habits. And we all know you have to get in early with good habits because any gaps are guaranteed to be filled with bad ones! But how do we establish these good habits? The old fashioned way – repetition and set routines. These don’t have to be boring, by the way. Add a song, incorporate them into an activity kids enjoy or read them a funny book that’s been cleverly written to get the message across.

For example, here’s a few recommendations from author Steve Smallman’s hilarious series of “Fairy tales gone wrong”. By using the stories of well known characters, with a twist or two, he infuses them with encouraging messages about good health and hygiene.

Link to Catalogue record for Rapunzel, Rapunzel, wash your hair!
Link to Catalogue record for Don't pick your nose, Pinocchio!
Link to Catalogue record for Stinky Jack and the beanstalk
Link to Catalogue record for Blow your nose, Big Bad Wolf!

If you would like to look into good health and hygiene in a more detailed way, try a general search on our library website. I would recommend starting by typing something like “hygiene” into the “Search library catalogue … ” field (top and centre). You can then narrow the search down to junior titles by selecting “Audience >Children” (left of page).

 

There are many to choose from but two titles, going by their summary description (I haven’t read them), that stood out for me were:

Link to Catalogue record for Keeping clean
Link to Catalogue record for Caring for our bodies

As I mentioned above, the best way to encourage good habits is to make them fun. And what better way is there to make a mundane task fun, than to set it to music? So, next time you’re at the sink with the kids …

Wash, Wash, Wash Your Hands

(To the tune of Row, Row, Row Your Boat)

Wash, wash, wash your hands
Wash them nice and clean.
Scrub them here (with hand motion scrubbing together)
Scrub them there (with hand motion scrubbing tops of hands)
And scrub them in between (with hand motion scrubbing between fingers).

Wash, wash, wash your hands
Play our handy game
Rub and scrub, scrub and rub
Germs go down the drain. HEY!

Wash, wash, wash your hands
Play our handy game
Rub and scrub, scrub and rub
Germs go down the drain. HEY!

For some more official guidelines, the council has provided this handy infographic:

 

And do please be selective about the sources you use to stay informed and keep track of latest developments. The best and most up-to-date and official information relating to the questions you may have will be government websites like WA Department of Health.

Take care of yourselves, stay clean and stay healthy everyone!