Teachers and healthcare professionals working with young children are encouraged to take advantage of new educational resources developed specifically to help young people learn about germs in the aftermath of the Covid-19 pandemic.
Researchers at De Montfort University in Leicester (DMU) have produced a bank of free materials and activities for use in schools and health facilities – including a new book, long-reading video and a workshop in class – with the aim of teaching children about the importance of good hygiene to stop the spread of viruses.
Created by Professor Katie Laird, DMU Microbiology Expert and Education Specialist Professor Sarah Younie, and illustrated by Jules Marriner, Bye Bye Germs: Be a Handwashing Superhero! is the last publication of the book in the ‘The germ journey‘, which aims to raise awareness and communicate the importance of handwashing from an early age.
Professor Younie said: âTeaching children from an early age about germs is especially important in the wake of Covid-19 and the need to continuously emphasize good hand hygiene. We should also stress how germs are transmitted through coughing and sneezing and the importance of catching germs in a tissue or your elbow.
âOur new book contains additional free resources to support learning. We have an audiobook and a video, which are read by the illustrator and accompanied by subtitles and British Sign Language.
âBy making our resources available for a range of learner needs, anyone working in education and health can access them to support children. ”
The new resources, which are free to download online, support learning about handwashing and respiratory health in response to Covid-19. They include the best advice on how families can prevent the spread at home, an illustrated guide on how to wash their hands properly, and an illustration of âchecking for germsâ, to help young people identify where viruses are found. can be caught.
Experts from DMU have visited classrooms to conduct educational workshops using the resources, while training sessions for teachers and healthcare workers are also available free of charge through the university.
Parks Primary School in Leicester recently invited researchers to organize a session for its first graders.
âI think before the session the kids had a little idea of ââgerms but they didn’t really understand because they couldn’t see them,â said Hope Archer, a teacher at the school.
âThe workshop was really hands-on and I heard a lot of kids talking in their groups about the good and bad germs, so it was really interesting to hear their conversations after that.
âThey also now want to wash their hands before lunch or break because they realize the impact of handwashing and see what happens if you don’t. ”
The project was funded by Barclays Bank as part of its 100×100 Covid-19 Community Relief Fund which supports Covid-19 work in local communities.
In addition to visiting schools for interactive workshops, DMU also donated hundreds of copies of the book to primary schools and nurseries across the UK.
Professor Laird added: âThe funding from Barclays has been invaluable to the project as it has enabled us to significantly expand the resources of Germ’s Journey and make them accessible and available free of charge to children and teachers across the UK.
âIt is often a difficult concept for young children to understand that microorganisms are invisible but can make you sick. The funding allowed us to help children understand this concept and learn more about infectious disease transmission and prevention in a fun and interactive way.
Teachers and healthcare professionals who want to use the free resources can learn more by visiting www.germsjourney.com
Posted on Thursday, November 11, 2021