With a new school year comes excitement and anticipation. But unfortunately, the new year can also bring a host of yucky germs. And while communal areas like the cafeteria and playground may seem like the most likely spots for bacteria and viruses to linger, you may be surprised to learn that the classroom is the most likely place for children to contract communicable diseases.
In this post, we’ll cover how to prevent the spread of germs in the classroom and share the best ways for maintaining a clean, healthy learning environment to help make your school year a success.
Understanding Germs in the Classroom
A recent study by the Center for Disease Control reports that 164 million school days are lost yearly due to illness. As such, understanding the cause of communicable illnesses is essential for keeping our students (and teachers!) in school.
What exactly are “germs?”
Germs are tiny microbes that can cause disease in humans. Germs can spread when students touch contaminated surfaces, such as desks
When it comes to preventing the spread of germs, knowledge is power. Understanding where germs lurk and the difference between cleaning and disinfecting are the keys to unlocking an even safer and more productive school year.
Where do germs hide inside of classrooms?
Desks and Tables
Thanks to the touching and sharing in the classroom, desks are covered in everything from the common cold to the flu.
Books and Notebooks
We want the kids to be bookworms, but often forget books and notebooks in our cleaning regime. Front and back covers and pages get sneezed and coughed on and sit on dirty surfaces.
Door handles and frames are constantly touched throughout the day and contaminated with germs.
The warmth of light switches makes them a perfect breeding ground for germs. In addition, light switches don’t get disinfected frequently enough.
Sink Handles and Water Fountains
With all the hand washing kids do, it might be surprising that the sink handles in the classroom are another place where germs hide. One recent study found that the buttons on water fountains had over 2,700 colony-forming units of bacteria per square inch—nearly 30 times the amount of bacteria on a doorknob.
Don’t forget about the pencil sharpener! Whether they’re hand-held, wall mounted, or desktop units, these devices are often covered in bacteria, which can then be transferred to pencils and other materials.
Bean Bag Chairs
Kids love to chill in their comfy bean bag chairs. However, common allergens and pathogens love to hide inside of soft items and dust, making communal classroom furniture a hotbed of disease.
How to Prevent the Spread of Germs in the Classroom
The best defense is a good offense—regular hand-washing and covering coughs and sneezes are key. In addition to these simple precautions, sanitizing and disinfecting can help reduce the spread of germs in the classroom and keep everyone healthy all year.
Here’s why sanitizing and disinfecting really works.
Both sanitizing and disinfecting are important and both serve an important role in keeping the classroom from spreading germs to kids, educators, and support staff.
For example, some surfaces don’t tolerate the more potent disinfectant ingredients, like our skin or book pages. Therefore, a sanitizer is appropriate for reducing germs. On the other hand, harder surfaces can tolerate being disinfected where all germs that come into contact with the spray or solution are killed.
These products help disinfect classrooms to keep kids healthy.
You can start by using disinfectant wipes like Clorox Fresh Scent Disinfecting Wipes for the germiest classroom areas. The wipes are sturdy, pre-moistened, and have a handy dispenser for quick access to clean over different surfaces like a door handle or a light switch.
Another great product is the Lysol Lemon and Lime Scent Disinfecting Wipes Flatpack which can be stacked for a space-saving storage option.
For a more thorough job, spray disinfectants are very effective for reaching surfaces a wipe or rag can’t get. Claire Aerosol Country Fresh Scent Disinfectant is a germ-killing disinfectant used in hospitals and schools across the country.
Ready To Use Avistat-D Disinfectant Cleaner is another effective disinfectant cleaner that can kill germs and prevent cross-contamination from classroom to kiddo.
We offer some pretty cool disinfectant sprayers, like the Victory Professional Cordless Electrostatic Hand Held Sprayer. Looking like a cross between a leaf blower and a nerf gun, this tool will help educators kill germs across a large area in a shorter amount of time.
Or how about the Victoria Professional’s Electrostatic Backpack Sprayer, which holds more disinfectant for more efficient cleaning. The 3-Gallon Handheld Sprayer will do the trick for those who want a simpler sprayer to help make the cleaning job quicker.
The Bottom Line
Sanitizing and disinfecting are important tools in the fight to keep classrooms germ-free. By using products like disinfectant wipes, sprays, and solutions, you can help reduce the spread of germs and keep everyone healthy all year long!
Unisan Supplies in Columbus, OH, provides the industry’s best safety equipment, janitorial supplies, and warehouse supplies. We know that health and safety are the primary priorities at any school or office building. You can easily order any safety equipment or products you need through our online store.
Looking for a more customized solution that will save you time? Our team will work closely with you to ensure your safety and cleaning products are always stocked and on hand. Give our team a call at (614) 863-1700.