Germ Science Experiment - Handwashing Activity

Teaching children to wash their hands is crucial! Kids often seem a little reluctant to wash their hands and if they do wash them it is often a quick rinse under the tap. With this Germ Science Experiment you can demonstrate to young children the importance of using soap when washing their hands to keep the germs away.  This hand washing activity is not only fun, but a great way to teach kids about germs.

Germ science experiment




The best way to make young children curious about the whole washing hands process is through... you guessed it, fun. And this germ science experiment is definitely fun!

Use black pepper, dish soap, and water to demonstrate why hand washing with soap is so important to keep the germs away. In this experiment black pepper is used to represent the germs.


You might also want to check out these hand washing activities!



Germ Science Experiment - Handwashing Activity


Germs Experiment Supplies:


  • Black pepper (to represent germs)
  • Water
  • Dish soap (washing up liquid)
  • Small dish 

Directions for this fun handwashing activity for kids


STEP 1: Get all your supplies ready


Gather up all your supplies before starting this hand washing activity. You will need black pepper, water, a small dish and liquid soap as well as a willing volunteer!

Germ science activity supplies


STEP 2: Prepare the germ experiment



Start by filling a dish with water and then sprinkle pepper on top of the water (but not too much!) Remember, the pepper represents the germs.

Handwashing activity

hand washing activity

STEP 2: Put the experiment to test


Invite your child to dip their finger into the water. Show them what happens after! His little finger gets tons of germs on it!

Germ science experiment for kids

STEP 3: Demonstrate how soap removes the germs right away


Squirt a small amount of soap onto your child's finger and then put it into the water. Here is when you show your kid what happens next!

The soap makes the germs run away! The pepper immediately scatters when it comes into contact with the soap.

hand washing activities for kids

pepper and water science experiment

This experiment is actually demonstrating how water surface tension works, but it's a great way of demonstrating to young children in a visual way why we need to use soap when washing our hands.

After doing this germ science experiment complete this hand washing activity by showing children how to wash their hands with soap for 20 seconds before rinsing the soap off (we don't want them thinking just dipping their finger into soap will keep the germs away!)

The kids will love this hand washing activity. The reaction is fast and it's a fun way to learn about germs. I hope you and your children enjoy trying out this germ science experiment!

Germ science experiment. A fun and easy hand washing activity for kids.

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