20 Seconds and You’re Good to Go!: A Peer-Focused Instructional Handwashing Video for Students

still from handwashing video

Hand washing is a key health habit to stop germs and avoid flu and other contagious diseases (CDC 2016). In “20 seconds and You’re Good to Go!” middle school students show peers the correct way to wash their hands and use hand sanitizer.

“20 Seconds and You’re Good to Go” is a 2 ½ minute video created in response to a request from a School Health Advisory Committee (SHAC) to reinforce proper handwashing behavior among elementary and middle school students. The goal of the video is to reduce student absence due to flu and flu-like illness. Developed by the UF/IFAS Extension Family Nutrition Program (FNP), the video was requested, viewed and approved by the SHAC. The committee distributed the video to every local elementary and middle school. In schools with formal nutrition education, the video will be used with students to reinforce the food safety lesson offered at the beginning of each school year. Other schools have already used the video as a “stand-alone” method to educate and remind students of the importance of proper handwashing. 

The use of multiple teaching strategies promotes “robust cognitive development, not only over the course of a school year but also over the course of a lifetime” (Willis 2006).  Conveying an important lifelong skill, such as handwashing, in a variety of ways including lecture, interactive demonstration and video presentation caters to different learning styles and gives all students the opportunity to succeed in this important task.

View the video below!



Ginny Hinton, MPH, University of Florida/IFAS Extension


Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases (NCIRD) 2016. “Preventing the Flu: Good Health Habits Can Help Stop Germs”.

Willis, J. 2006. Research-based strategies to ignite student learning. Alexandria, VA: Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development.