Hand-washing Experiment Done By Teacher Surprises Everyone

Representing by example is a better way to convince someone than using words. You might try to convince people by talking but show them results and they will believe you instantly. Jaralee Metcalf who is a school teacher that lives in Idaho, decided to prove by example the power of handwashing to her students. 

When the last winter just began, Jaralee started getting sick since the seasonal flu had just started. She was tired of being sick every time that the flue would come around, so she decided to show her students how they can kill most germs around them by just washing their hands properly.

The Purpose of the Experiment

To show how bacteria spreads through skin contact and how important it is to wash your hands regularly. Metcalf came up with a simple technique that requested five of her students to touch five slices of bread taken from the same loaf. Then they put the slices in plastic bags for a month to see what would happen.

The Stages of the Experiment.

They took fresh bread and simply touched it with their hands. The first piece of bread touched only the surfaces of all the laptops in the classroom. The second slice was put inside the plastic bag untouched and left there for a month. The third slice was touched by the students with unwashed hands. The fourth piece of bread was touched by students who washed their hands with soap and water. And the last slice of bread was touched by students who just did their hands with hand sanitizer. 

The Slice That Touched The Laptops

This slice showed the worst results after one month. You can see its surface is all covered from mold which means that it gathered a lot of bacteria from the laptops of the classroom.

Hands Washed With Soap and Water & The Fresh Slice

You can clearly see that these two slices look almost the same. This proves that washing your hands with soap and water is the same as if you hadn’t touched the bread at all. 

The Dirty Hands Piece

The results on the dirty hands slice are pretty bad. After one month of staying in a plastic bag, not only the bread went bad but you can see mold growth on its surface.

Sanitized Hands

It is very interesting to see the results on the slice that was touched with sanitized hands. Even though the students used hand sanitizer to clean their hands, the touched bread still went bad which shows that the hand sanitizer is not as effective as washing your hands with soap and water.


Now we can truly say that washing your hands with soap and water is very important. There are people who sanitize their hands with alcohol but the results are not the same as the soap and running water. So stay clean and wash your hands regularly.

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