With cold and flu season well underway, parents and teachers have a new tool to teach kids how to protect themselves from germs. “ Soap and Water Science” is a fun online activity developed by the Project WET Foundation, with support from Ecolab, to teach kids how germs spread—and how soap and water work together to stop that process. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention cite washing hands with soap as one of the “most effective ways to prevent the spread of many types of infection and illness in all settings.”
“Proper hand washing remains one of the most important ways that everyone—including kids—can prevent illness,” said Kris Taylor, Ecolab’s vice president of Community Relations. “Instilling effective hand cleaning habits through an interactive activity online—a platform that kids intuitively understand and enjoy—is another way we’re helping make the world a cleaner, safer and healthier place.”
Part of Project WET's popular DiscoverWater.org interactive learning website, “Soap and Water Science” takes kids through a colorful, animated street scene in which they can see the many surfaces that multiple people touch every day. This indirect contact allows germs to spread from one person to another unless germs are removed from hands and surfaces. The game begins when kids “scrub” off an assortment of stubborn germs to send them down the drain. In addition to showing how soap and water combine to remove germs, the game models the proper time and technique needed to reduce the spread of illness, and teaches kids a catchy song to help them remember what they have learned.
“Soap and Water Science” is the latest English-language resource in Ecolab and Project WET’s Clean and Conserve Education Program, which is designed to reach two million people with interactive water conservation and hygiene education by the end of 2017. All materials in the program are available for download and use at no charge.
In addition to “Soap and Water Science”, the Activity Guide for Educators, which contains five engaging lessons that can be done with audiences of all ages, is newly available in Portuguese for Brazil and French for Canada on the Clean and Conserve website. Fully customized versions of the curriculum are being prepared in Mandarin, Spanish for Mexico and German.
Project WET Foundation's partnership with Ecolab is part of Ecolab's Solutions for Life program, which enhances the company’s work to conserve water and improve hygiene around the world through partnerships with leading NGOs, global philanthropy and employee volunteerism.