The palms of our hands are populated with millions of bacteria. One quick touch of an unwashed hand on a special plate is all that is needed to show this. Every day our hands come into contact with millions of microorganisms called bacteria. With plenty to feed on and some warmth, the bacteria will grow and can actually be seen. In the microscopic world of bacteria, they double their number every twenty minutes! Fortunately most bacteria die. Heat kills them and cold stops them multiplying. We wash our hands because some bacteria can make us very ill. Clean hands mean fewer bacteria on our food.

This clip is from:
Science Clips, Micro Organisms
First broadcast:
11 October 2007

Children could watch this clip as visual reinforcement after they have learnt about bacteria on the human body. The children could use stills from the clip to help them to design a scientific explanation poster on the importance of washing your hands. These posters could then be displayed around the school, particularly in lunch halls. This clip is useful during a topic on microorganisms or on cooking.