Students will complete a variety of activities to learn about the Food Pyramid and the importance of eating a variety of healthy foods.
Main Curriculum Tie:
2nd Grade - Content
Standard 1 Objective 1
Describe and adopt behaviors for health and safety.
For each student:
- Play-Doh® or salt clay
in red, yellow, orange,
white, green, and brown
- Paper plate, paper cup
or other container
- 2” x 2” square of white paper or Post-it® note
- Food Pyramid Chart (pdf)
- Food Cards (pdf)
- Crayons, pens, markers,
or other writing utensils
- Plastic wrap
- Food Rules, by Bill Haduch; ISBN 0-14-131147-9
- The Berenstain Bears and Too Much Junk Food, by Stan and Jan
Berenstain; ISBN 0-394-87217-7
- D.W. the Picky Eater, by Marc Brown; ISBN 0-316-10957-6
(hardcover), ISBN 0-316-11048-5 (paperback)
- Eating the Alphabet: Fruits and Vegetables from A to Z, by Lois
Ehlert; ISBN 0-15-224435-2
- National Dairy Council, Rosemont, IL 60018-5616
Background For Teachers:
Students should know why it is important to eat a variety of foods.
Intended Learning Outcomes:
1. Demonstrate a positive learning attitude.
4. Develop physical skills and personal hygiene.
6. Communicate clearly in oral, artistic, written, and nonverbal form.
Invitation to Learn
Did you know pirates lost their teeth, but it wasn’t because they
didn’t brush their teeth? It is because they didn’t eat foods that contained
Vitamin C. Did you know that there are foods you should eat everyday,
just like pirates, because eating the right amount of a lot of different
foods gives you the vitamins and minerals that will help you grow.
Have each child draw a picture of his/her favorite thing to eat on
the 2” x 2” squares of paper (e.g., something that grows in the ground,
comes from a tree or bush, meat, dairy, or is made from wheat, oats or
- Collect and graph data according to the food group the picture
- Explain that our food is divided into groups.
- Some foods can fit in more than one category.
- Discuss the differences of each food and the similarities.
- Each group of food is important for our bodies.
- Milk Group—strong bones and teeth
- Meat Group—strong muscles, builds blood vessels, skin
- Vegetable Group—muscles work, heart beat, see in the dark,
make red blood cells, and helps you grow
- Fruit Group—heal cuts and bruises
- Grain Group—energy
- Label Food Pyramid Chart and draw pictures of what
they would like to each from each group to satisfy their
recommended daily servings (Milk: 3; Meat: 2; Vegetable: 3;
Fruit: 2; Grain: 6). These represent the minimum number of
servings recommended each day for children from 6-8 years of
age. Some children may need more servings depending on their
size, activity level and growth.*
* National Dairy Council, Pyramid Café 1998
- Divide students into small groups of four to five.
- One child selects a Food Card, looks at the word and then
without talking or motioning, molds that food using Play-Doh® or
salt clay. Whoever guesses what is being made takes the next
turn. Everyone should have an opportunity to be the sculptor.
- Give each child a small ball of each color of clay (about the size
of a quarter).
- Explain they are going to make miniature food servings from the
foods they listed on their charts.
- Instruct them to look at their Food Pyramid Charts and sculpt
each food they have drawn and place it on their paper plate. Each
food item should be smaller than 1 inch. (Do not to eat the clay!)
- Show them how to make foods with a variety of colors (e.g., egg
with white and yellow clay, a slice of watermelon, corn on the
- Demonstrate how combination foods can fit into more than one
category (e.g., a hamburger would have 2 servings from the grain
group, 1 serving from the meat group, 1 serving from the
vegetable group, 1 serving from the cheese group—depending on
- They should check off each food item on their list after they
- When they are finished, they will have a model of what they
would need to eat during one day to help their bodies grow
healthy and strong.
- Cover the plates with plastic wrap or place in a large plastic bag
for each child to take home, or give them a container to put their
food in. Paper cups will work to get them home without being
- It is good to eat a variety of foods. Different vegetables, for
example, have different vitamins and minerals. A good variety
helps our bodies to receive all the necessary nutrients it needs to
grow healthy and strong.
- Not only do we need to eat smart, but exercise and rest is an
important part of being healthy.
- Discuss activities to do instead of sitting. Generate a list on the
- Have students copy down some of their favorite activities that
they can do at home or type up all the responses, copy and send
home with each child.
- Getting enough sleep is critical for our bodies, too.
- Children who are 7-8 years old require about ten hours of sleep
- Draw the student’s favorite food from all five groups and tape
them on the wall to see which group people like to eat from the
- Write a letter to a pirate telling them how important it is that they
eat right. (Pirates lost their teeth because they didn’t get enough
- Record how long you sleep each night for one week. Write down
the time you turn off your light and the time you wake up in the
morning. Graph and evaluate your results to see if you are getting
- Children can help plan a meal for their family that contains
something from each food group.
- Record what they eat in a day’s time using the
Food Group Chart
(pdf) and see what group they need to cut back on or what
group they need to eat from more often.
- Share the information they have learned with their families and
help them make wise choices about the foods they are eating.
- Generate a list of family activities to engage in instead of
watching television or playing video games.
- Give each child a Food Pyramid Chart and cut outs of different
foods. Have them glue each piece in the correct category to fulfill
their necessary daily requirements.
- Tell why our bodies need nutrients from each group and how they
keep us healthy.
Created Date :
Sep 16 2004 14:45 PM