By Anna Wrice, Red Cross Volunteer
Heathwood Hall High School students served their local Red Cross by teaching the American Red Cross Scrubby Bear Hand Washing Program to children of local elementary schools during the week of March 5– 9, 2012.
A group of nine high school students from Heathwood Hall taught the importance of personal hygiene to the K-5 and 1st Grade students of A.C. Moore Elementary, Caughman Road Elementary and Carver-Lyons Elementary. The personal hygiene lesson is taught through the fun and interactive Scrubby Bear Hand Washing Program.
The Scrubby Bear Hand Washing Program was chosen by the Red Cross as a way to teach children how germs are spread, how to prevent the spread of disease and how to properly wash their hands,” said Carol Morrett, volunteer coordinator, American Red Cross, Columbia Region. “Children love Scrubby and really respond to his message.”
The Scrubby Bear presentation lasts approximately 30 minutes. During the presentation the older students explain what germs are and where the kids contract them. To effectively communicate how to properly wash hands, the students read the Scubby Bear story and teach the song. The older students say that their favorite part of the presentation is when they get to teach the steps and words of the song to the younger students. The elementary school students catch on quickly to the song once they recognize that it is set to the classic “Row, Row, Row Your Boat” tune.
“I loved seeing how much the students enjoyed getting in the classroom and performing the Scrubby Bear song as a tool to remind educators and children that infection can be fought through frequent hand washing,” Morret said.
After the presentation the younger students received a Scrubby Bear sticker and coloring sheet when they pledged to keep their hands clean and do their best to remember the Scrubby Bear motto, “Don’t get sick, wash up quick.”
Heathwood Hall offers their students a unique program, called “Winterim,” which is the chance for their students to perform community service for an entire week. The students may choose to serve the public locally, nationally or abroad.
This is the second year that the Red Cross has teamed up with Heathwood Hall during their “Winterim” to teach elementary students about personal hygiene.
This program is most appropriate for children ages 4 through 7. Although the written and verbal materials are currently available in English only, they have been successfully used by schools, hospitals, health agencies and day care centers throughout the world.
For more information about Red Cross programs and volunteer opportunities, please visit our website at www.columbiaregionredcross.org