Vaccination #1 – Classroom game: Spread of a viral infection


Hannah Kwella, Annette Scheersoi and Jana Schilbert


Rheinische Friedrich-Wilhelms-Universität Bonn

The aim of this activity is to provide students with an engaging and enduring learning experience, allowing them to grasp the rapidity with which viral infections can spread. Furthermore, the game serves as a valuable tool for instilling awareness regarding the importance of implementing effective protective measures. Through this experiential exercise, students gain not only knowledge but also a deeper understanding of the necessity for appropriate safeguards in the face of viral threats.


  • 12
  • 13
  • 14
  • 15
  • 16
  • 17
  • 18


  • Vaccination


  • Less than 1 hour

A half-full cup of drinkable water is prepared for each student. In three of the cups, one teaspoon of salt is dissolved. These cups are marked with a cross on the bottom. The students are asked to take a cup (without knowing about the saltwater) and walk around in the room, mixing their water with at least 2–3 contacts each. They are unaware that three of the cups contain saltwater. They mix their water by pouring the contents of one cup into another and then dividing the amount equally again between the two cups.

At the end of the game, the students drink from their cups and use their hands to signal who is “infected” (= tastes salt). They should then check the bottom of the cup to see who had been infected at the beginning of the game (= cross to show that salt had been added).