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Three photos of kids playing

How To: ‘Hands On Art’ in the Classroom

by Sydney Opera House and Dettol

Dettol is a Sydney Opera House Global Goals Partner. Our Global Goals Partners support our commitment to the Goals and enable us to inspire positive change.

Dettol x Sydney Opera House

Harness the power of creative play in the classroom this 'back to school', to learn hygiene habits with us!

Dettol partnered with the Sydney Opera House to deliver Hands On Art
an event and inspiration for Australian children to learn simple, important hand hygiene through imagination and creativity over the holidays. 

You can create your own 'Hands on Art' in class event to ease kids into back-to-school mode. 



with conceptual artist, Curly Furnandez

Here’s what you’ll need:

  • A Dettol Hand Wash of your choice
  • Temporary face and body markers*
  • Dettol 2in1 Hand & Surfaces Anti-Bacterial Wipes
  • Skin safe accessories of your choice (googly eyes, funky lashes, stickers)

How to bring your character to life:

Step 1: Chat to your class about how they are feeling today, what did they do over the holidays, did they observe some new shapes or characters? Can they observe the same shapes in the classroom? Can they see some squares in the class window? Or maybe they can see some fluffy clouds above? 

Step 2: Get the class to wash their hands with Dettol Hand Wash, because with clean hands they have a clean canvas! They can even make some bubbles by scrubbing their hands over and over, singing Catch a Habit for at least 20 seconds to ensure they have washed long enough. Did they get their thumbs and the back of their hands extra clean? 

Step 3: Get them to pick three of their favourite colours from your marker set, and guide them to use their answers from step 1 as inspiration to mark the outline of their Art Monster or Maiden. This can be abstract, or it can be a character – the beauty of art is that it’s completely up to their imagination! 

Step 4: Ask them to colour in their Art Monster or Maiden using their remaining chosen markers. If they go out of the lines or make any mistakes, they could try wrapping a Dettol 2in1 Wipe around their finger and then wiping it off – too easy!*

Step 5: Their character needs some special features and they can use their skin safe adhesive and accessories to finish off the character. Remember, their Art Monster or Maiden’s eyes don’t need to go where our eyes do – maybe theirs are on the feet?!

Top tip from Curly: Have some extra fun with the kids by breaking them into pairs and having them hide accessories in each of their palms, closing them behind their back. Have the other student pick one for their partner and now those accessories are the ones they must use! 

Step 6: Now it’s time to bring their characters to life! What is their name? Who are they and where do they live? Are they happy or funny or mad? Take their characters out for an adventure and take photos of them in the world. 

Step 7: Once they are done playing with their new characters, they can say goodbye to their Monster or Maiden, remove the accessories and wash their hands thoroughly with Dettol Hand Wash. Now they've got clean hands and a clean canvas for a new character, maybe to be done at home with adult supervision! 

Did You Know?

Kids’ most formative years are up to the age of 8 years old1, so this is a great time to teach them new habits. Doing so by engaging their imagination ensures those habits are retained. ‘Hands On Art’ in the classroom is a great way to teach kids new hygiene habits they can remember for the rest of the term, while having a little (or lot!) of fun.

For more ideas to encourage building healthy hygiene habits, visit Dettol Australia

*Ensure you are using markers that are safe for skin and washable
1 The Formative Years: UNICEF’s work on measuring early childhood development, 2018


Dettol is a Sydney Opera House Global Goals Partner.


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