Science with Shields: Episode #29 – Glitter Germs


ALTOONA, Pa. (WTAJ) — In this episode of Science with Shields, Christy Shields shows you how germs work.

What you need: 

  1. Glitter
  2. Plate
  3. Water
  4. Soap
  5. Paper towels


This activity is a great way to show how germs can quickly travel, and how soap and water can help get rid of them. First, put some glitter onto a plate. The glitter will represent germs.  Next, stick your hand into the glitter. If you touch your hand to your other hand, notice how the glitter gets transferred to the other hand. If you touch your face, notice now how your face has germs now! How can we make sure not to spread germs around? The best way is with soap and water. If you try to use just a paper towel, notice how some germs are still sticking to your hands and face, and some now drop to the floor. If go to the sink and wash your hands with just water, some germs still stick to you! If you wash your hands with soap and water, your hands will finally become clean. You can also try this activity by giving everyone in your home a different color of glitter and see how quickly germs can cross-contaminate and get everywhere!


What exactly is a germ? A germ is a tiny organism we cannot see with our own eye, you need a microscope. It is an organism that causes disease. Bacteria, fungi, and viruses are all germs.

Bacteria is a tiny single-celled organism that basically lives everywhere. Bacteria can be good or bad.

Viruses are small agents that cause disease. Viruses like to live inside cells of bigger organisms like humans, plants, or animals.

Soap and water are our best defense against the spreading of germs. Soap will break down the bacteria and viruses. It diminishes them keeping you healthy. That is why it is so important to wash your hands as much as possible.

Check out more Science with Shields episodes on WTAJ Plus.

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