This post may contain affiliate links. That means if you click and buy, I may receive a small commission at no extra cost to you. Please see my disclosure policies for full details.

Watch this germ experiment with your kiddos and grab these free hand washing posters.

Now seems like the perfect time to illustrate to kids exactly why it is so important to wash your hands. You might have seen the glitter germ experiment, but did you know you could teach the same concept with cocoa powder? I liked the idea of using cocoa powder because it looks like dirt so it really hits home with the little ones.

germ experiment

Related: DIY Gel Hand Sanitizer

You will need..

  • bowl with water
  • cocoa powder
  • dish soap
  • paper towels or cloth
  • a tray for cookie sheet (to catch the messes)

This germ experiment is really so simple that your kiddo could do just about everything.

Step 1: Start by putting cocoa powder into the bowl of water. Explain that the powder represents dirt.

Step 2: Have them dip one finger into the bowl. Observe what happens to the “dirt” when they remove their finger from the bowl. You want them to be able to verbalize that the dirt stuck to their finger.

Step 3: Clean their finger before starting the next step.

Step 4: You will repeat step 2, but this time they will dip their finger in dish soap first so that it completely coats the top of their finger.

Step 5: Remove finger and observe what happened. Discuss that the germs didn’t stick to their finder because it was protected by the soap.

Final conclusion: When we wash our hands, the germs don’t stick. Scroll to the bottom for your free hand washing posters.

germ experiment

Download your free hand washing posters.