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Teacher Lesson Plan - Healthy Foods- Balanced Meal Planner

Mar 03, 2010
About this Lesson Plan
  • Subject: Health/Nutrition/Computer skills
  • Duration: 20-30 minutes
  • Grades: 3-5
  • Ages: 8-13
  • Reading Levels: Intermediate
  • Prerequisite Knowledge and Skills: Basic knowledge of the My Plate or Food Pyramid, Hand-eye coordination

Meal Planner Lesson Plan

Balanced Meal

Topic/task Objective Domain and Level
Reinforce the food 
Student will select foods to place on their 
Affective – Responding
Students will determine what food group
 each food belongs to.
Cognitive – Evaluation
Students will combine foods to create a
balanced meal.
Cognitive - Comprehension
Promote balanced meal
Students will explain what makes a
balanced meal.
Cognitive - Comprehension
Student will determine identify food 
changes required to make a balanced meal.
Cognitive – Evaluation
Promote healthy nutrition messages
Students will listen to Kevin’s healthy
message about each of the food groups
and calories.
Affective – Receiving
Promote the enjoyment of nutrition
Students will explore virtual scenes to find 
hidden food.
Cognitive – Evaluation
Kevin’s Build-a-Meal Game:
This game is based on the USDA MyPyramid Guidelines. Students will need to select their gender, age and activity level to play this game. The game will automatically compute the calories and number of servings from each food group required for this student to have a balanced diet.
Once the student has entered in the required information, the student will be taken to a meal planning screen with squares designated for breakfast, lunch dinner and two snacks.
The student will then begin to select food items from three virtual scenes: a kitchen, a school cafeteria and a grocery store.
Using their mouse, they can click and drag food items onto their tray. The child will see a horizontal bar at the bottom of their screen that represents the energy or calories their body needs for one full day. As they select their food items, the associated servings and calories will automatically be filled in for them. If the student selects too many high calorie foods and goes over their calorie needs, the bar will begin to turn red.
There are no calculations required to play this game. Food groups servings are color coded and each box represents one serving of that particular food group. By scrolling over selected food items shown at the bottom of the screen, students can learn the amount, food group(s) and calories of a particular food item.
The challenge is to find the right combination of foods that meets their calorie requirement and gives them enough servings from each of the food groups.
Once the student has created their meal plan for the day, the game will evaluate their meal and give advice on how to make it a balanced healthy meal if needed. There are over 160 food choices for the student to choose from. There is an optional “HELP” audio feature to guide the student.
Computer and Internet access, the latest Flash and Shockwave players installed, download free from Adobe
Teaching Tips: Have the student review the Interactive Food Pyramid or My Plate.
It may be also helpful for the 4th and 5th grade students to review the following vocabulary words in the Nutrition Dictionary
Calorie, Serving Size, Daily Recommendations, Food Pyramid, Low Physical Activity, Medium Physical Activity, High Physical Activity
  1. Have the students list their favorite meals for breakfast, lunch, dinner and snack time.
  2. Put the students in small groups and have them select two meals and list all the food groups found in those meals. Have the group list the number of food groups found in each meal (breakfast, lunch, dinner and snacks).
  3. Discuss any incorrect placements, explaining why that selection belongs to one or more specific food groups.
  4. Guide the students to Kevin's Build-a-Meal Game where they will see a where they will create a customized meal plan that is balanced with the right amount of servings from each of the food groups and within their caloric requirements.
Have the student track their daily meals for one week using our meal tracking sheet.
Printable - Write in Food Daily Tracking Sheet

Printable - Write In Food Weekly Journal


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Written on Mar 03, 2010Last updated on Aug 01, 2012




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