of the book:
Teacher background on health concerns: p.62-64.
Teacher notes for activity: p.65-70.
4 rubber bands,
2 cotton balls,
6 cotton-tipped swabs,
liquid detergent that whitens without chlorine bleach (ie. Tide),
UV light (with batteries and extension cord),
Stuffed animal “rat”
Scenario - During a break, some teachers noticed a rat walking
through some spilled liquid laundry detergent near the hotel
laundry room. Then, they saw the rat scurrying toward the conference
rooms. Some laundry detergents contain a special chemical that
make them glow under a UV light, so we can try to look for “rat
tracks” this way. We will use a UV light to detect if
the rat has been in our room.
Before the class arrives:
1. Make 2 rat feet using rubber bands, cotton balls, cotton swabs
and pencils – diagram on p. 66. Dip the rat feet into the
detergent, redipping as necessary.
2. Make “rat tracks” around the room. Be sure to
include highly used areas such as backs of chairs, desk tops,
(in a classroom, the pencil sharpener and faucets).
After the class arrives:
3. Describe the scenario.
4. Use a UV light to search for the “tracks”, then
look on participants’ feet and hands to see if any “pathogens” may
have spread as participants moved around the room. Ask if anyone
touched something, or passed something to someone else - other
ways that pathogens may spread.