Florence Nightingale – Hand Hygiene

Who was Florence Nightingale?

Florence Nightingale was British nurse made famous for the work she did to care for soldiers during the Crimean War, but she was also hugely influential in changing how hospitals were run, improving cleanliness and patient care.

Florence is considered to be the founder of modern nursing. The soldiers she cared for called her The Lady with the Lamp as she worked all night taking care of them.

Florence was the first women to be given the Order of Merit, the first women to become a member of the Royal Statistical Society and also received The Royal Red Cross.

Children can learn about the importance of hand hygiene in preventing the spread of germs with a simple hand washing activity.

Florence Nightingale

Keeping hands clean activity



Hand cream

Water and soap

Paper towel


Split the children into groups of two and ask one child from each pair to rub a little hand lotion onto their hands.

Sprinkle a little glitter onto the hand with hand lotion and ask the children to shake hands. They should see that they both now have glitter on their hands.

Ask both children to try to remove the glitter using just a paper towel. Does it work?

Next try washing with just water, followed by water and soap to see which method of hand washing is most effective.

glitter hands investigation

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