Seventh grade science students at The Wardlaw+Hartridge School in Edison took advantage of a timely opportunity to learn more about the benefits of using soap in an experiment designed to teach the scientific method. Four volunteers were asked to get their hands very "dirty" with a mixture of coffee grounds and oils and asked the question "What is the benefit of using soap when we wash our hands?" After creating their hypothesis, two volunteers got a drop of soap (experimental group) and two went without soap. 

The students saw clearly how the soap (a surfactant) helped the water adhere to the oil/coffee mixture to wash it more effectively. Andrea Barnett, teacher and Science Department Co-Chair, was also able to introduce some facts about the coronavirus, specifically about having a fat layer that is damaged by soap. She hopes this quick lesson served to illustrate and reinforce some important information to keep everyone safe.

The Wardlaw+Hartridge School (1295 Inman Ave., N. Edison) is Central Jersey’s premier PreK-12 independent school. The campus is located near the Scotch Plains border and just five miles from downtown Westfield. It is a private, nonsectarian, coeducational day school that prepares students to lead and succeed in a world of global interconnection. Wardlaw+Hartridge provides an educational atmosphere characterized by academic challenge, support for individual excellence, diversity, and a familial sense of community. To take a virtual tour of the school, visit