you begin this unit, you may wish to create a class library of student
books relating to food. Suggestions for such books appear in the Bibliography of Books About Food for
Before this lesson, perhaps as part of a science lesson or a center,
provide scissors and magazines and ask the students to cut out pictures
of all kinds of food.
Hold up one picture of food that the students have cut out, and ask
them to identify it. Then display a copy of the Food Pyramid on the
overhead projector or on a poster. (A simple internet image search should produce many options, such as the following.)
volunteers to name each section of the pyramid and tell some foods that
would go in each section. Now ask them to look again at the picture
that you are holding and place it in the proper section of the pyramid.
Repeat with several other pictures of food. Ask whether any sections
are still empty. If so, encourage the students to name items that could
be placed in the missing categories. This is an excellent time to
encourage the students to list foods particular to their cultures
(tortillas, fry bread, pita bread, and matzo, for example) in the
various sections of the Food Pyramid.
Invite the students to focus on the section of the pyramid that
holds the fruit group. Ask them to note how many servings from this
group should be eaten every day. If necessary, explain that two to four
servings means that from two to four servings should be eaten each day.
Now distribute the 10 Strips Activity Sheet to each student.
Have the students draw one fruit in each of two to four spaces, then
record how many pieces of fruit they drew. Call on various students to
describe what they drew on their recording strips.
Repeat with recording three to five vegetables on the same strip.
Then ask how many sections on the 10 strip have been filled. Encourage
those who can to record this using an additional sentence.
Now repeat the activity using other sections of the food pyramid and
suggesting a different number, up to 10, of the foods to be eaten.
Continue to encourage the students to share their drawings.
To conclude the lesson, gather groups of students around the
computer and introduce them to a food group detective games. A simple internet search of "free food group detective game," should produce viable options.
As they play, they will be asked to discover foods from various
categories of the food pyramid. Play a demonstration round of the game
with the groups, then tell the students that this activity will be a
choice during math center or free time. Bookmark the game on the
computer that the students will use, and show them how to use the
bookmark to easily access the site.