Friday, 29 January 2010

Handwashing for toddlers!

I have had a plan for a long time to improve the way that I help the toddlers to wash their hands.  I plan my setting using the principles of Montessori theory, so designing things to allow children to be indepedent is important.  Todddlers using the kitchen sink poses several safety issues such as washing up that may be stacked there, balancing on a chair or step, turning the hot tap on and it getting too hot, and others.  To solve these issues and allow for as much independence as possible, here is my handwashing station now!

The little table is an ikea side table that I cut a hole in to fit the bowl.  The bowl is also from ikea and comes as a two-pack with one larger than this.  Both bowls have a handle on one side and a pouring lip on the other.  I or one of the older children will put a jug of warm water into the bowl and the little one will then wash their hands using the squeezy soap that is placed so that drips go into the bowl.  After drying their hands, they will take the big bowl out from under the table, lift and tip their handwashing water into it, replace the little bowl for the next child and put the big bowl back under the table.  this is et up in my kitchen and the table is actually at right angles to the towels but to photograph it, I had to put it in front of them!!  Each child has an individual towel, I will be putting their photograph and name above the hook before Monday to help them identify their towel! 

I looked around for some nice handwashing posters to put up and found these from the Scottish Health Executive, i like them because they have songs on them and will help the children to remember to wash thier hands!

This supports children within the EYFS under Personal, Social and Emotional Development: Self-care as it will help the children to "gain a sense of concern about for their own personal hygiene and care and develop independence". It is also part of Physical Development: Health and Bodily Awareness.  It also comes generally under A Unique Child: 1.4 Health and Well-being.  If you include other aspects such as singing a handwashing song, working with another child to pour the water, talking about the water in the bowl, and identifying their own towel by their name and/or picture, then all areas of learning and development are covered.  Writing them up as a planning web shows evidence of supporting learning and development when you come to write your SEF!!!!

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