- To understand the importance of a healthy, balanced diet
- To understand the five food groups
- To use knowledge of the five food groups to create a healthy meal plan
- Invite pupils to talk about their favourite foods and how healthy they think these choices are.
- Show pupils the Healthy eating slideshow, which shows how the different food groups contribute to a balanced diet, and invite discussion. Note: The eatwell plate indicates the recommended proportion of different foods in a person’s overall diet but, for the purpose of this exercise, pupils may try to include foods in these proportions as they create their healthy meal plans.
Ages 7 to 9:
- Organise pupils into mixed-ability groups. Give groups a copy of the Food choice information cards, and the Healthy meal plan, photocopied onto A3 paper or card.
- Challenge groups to cut out all of the Food choice information cards and stick them in their correct food groups on the Healthy meal plan. They should then come up with a meal plan for a healthy breakfast (they could circle the foods they wish to include or annotate the sheet by adding other foods). They should write their chosen meal and its ingredients in the space provided at the bottom of the sheet.
- When finished, pupils could present their ideas to the class, talking about why they have chosen each food and how they’ve achieved a balanced meal.
- Pupils could also complete the interactive activity ‘Do you eat healthily?’
Ages 9 to 11:
- Ask pupils to pretend they are going to be opening up a new restaurant featuring healthy foods.
- Challenge groups to create a Healthy meal plan for a whole day’s menu – breakfast, lunch and dinner.They should include eggs in at least one meal. They can use the information on the Healthy eating slideshow and Food choice information cards to help them, as well as any additional research on the internet.
- When they have finished, they should prepare to present their menu to the class, justifying why they have chosen each food and how they have achieved the right balance of foods.
As an extension, groups could create posters advertising their new restaurant, showing the benefits of the healthy meals it will provide.
- Ask groups to present their healthy meal plans/menus to the rest of the class.
- Ask pupils to evaluate their own and others’ work in terms of how well they have achieved the recommended proportions of the different food groups throughout the course of the day.
- Discuss the different people or places that could help pupils find out more about eating well (e.g. parents, teachers, doctors, books, websites, local sports clubs).
- You could encourage pupils to make some of their healthy meals at home, with the help of their parents/carers, and take a photograph of their efforts. These could be used to create a ‘Healthy Eating’ wall display.