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Overview

​​​​​​Healthy behaviors learned in school including choosing nutritious foods and engaging in physical activity can lead to positive health outcomes such as maintaining a healthy body and improving academic performance. Through programs, policies, and learning opportunities, schools play a key role in establishing positive environments that promote and support healthy practices and behaviors such as regular physical activity and good nutrition (CDC Healthy Schools 2017). Proper nutrition and information on how to make healthy food choices are important for the growth, development, and overall health of fourth graders. Nutrition education is a continuum of learning experiences to develop knowledge and skills that become lifelong healthy practices. ​

The Orange County Department of Education does not control or guarantee the accuracy, relevance, timeliness or completeness of this outside information. Further, the inclusion of links to particular items in hypertext are not intended to reflect their importance, nor is it intended to endorse any views expressed or products or services offered on these outside sites, or the organizations sponsoring the sites.​​​​

Information and Resources

President’s Council on Fitness, Sports, & Nutrition - HHS

The President’s Council is a federal advisory committee that​works to increase sports participation among youth of all backgrounds and abilities and to promote healthy and active lifestyles for all Americans.​

American College of Sports Medicine

The American College of Sports Medicine provides information and resources on sports medicine, health, fitness, and exercise science student news.​​

Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans: Active Children and Adolescents

The Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans provides science-based guidance to help people ages 3 years and older improve their health through participation in regular physical activity. ​

NIH We Can! Program (posters and handouts)

We Can! (Ways to Enhance Children's Activity & Nutrition) provides information on healthy eating, physical activity, and screen time.​

Choose MyPlate - USDA

Explore MyPlate resources including food group information, tip sheets, recipes, infographics, print materials, quizzes, videos, toolkits, and more. ​

Team Nutrition - USDA

Team Nutrition is an initiative of the USDA Food and Nutrition Service to support the child nutrition programs through training and technical assistance for food service, nutrition education for children and their caregivers, and school and community support for healthy eating and physical activity. ​

National School Lunch and School Breakfast Program - USDA

The National School Lunch Program (NSLP) is a federally assisted meal program operating in public and nonprofit private schools and residential child care institutions. It provides nutritionally balanced, low-cost or free lunches to children each school day. ​

Food Safety Education Resources for Families - USDA

The USDA Food Safety and Inspection Service’s educational materials give adults and children the information they need to practice good food safety habits. This resource provides information, curriculum, games, posters, and other resources on food safety.​

The New Nutrition Facts Label: What's in it for you? - FDA

U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) provides updated​ information, videos, and fact sheets on the new Nutrition Facts label.  

Curriculum and Lessons

Serving Up MyPlate: A Yummy Curriculum 1-6

Serving Up MyPlate is a collection of classroom materials that helps elementary school teachers integrate nutrition education into Math, Science, English Language Arts, and Health.

Classroom Activities

  • Have students analyze food and beverage marketing techniques. 
  • Explore the history of American agriculture, sustainable food systems, and the influences of immigrants, including family recipes and traditions. 
  • Have students design advertisements for fresh fruit or vegetables grown in their region, include nutrient​ content, flavors and recipes. 
  • Have students calculate, measure, and compare the sugar content in various beverages. 
  • Use role-play or discussion scenarios to support decision-making processes about nutrition and physical activity.
  • Healthy celebrations in class. Celebrate holidays with healthy snacks or crafts. ​
  • Have students start a physical activity journal.​

Partnerships

​Partnering with the Family​​

​​Partnering with your School​​​

  • Work with the school Districts Food Service Department for education, cafeteria tours, and taste tests. 
  • Work with your school to host a Wellness Week. Engage teachers, parents, school counselor, school nurse, and administration to plan events each day such as special activities during recess and lunch, food tasting, fitness challenges, and dance-a-thons. 
  • Consider starting a school garden or compost area. 
  • Have students plan weekly school-wide walks around the school or neighborhood as a fundraiser that promotes physical activity. ​

​​Partnering with your Community​​

  • Takes students on a field trip to a local farm, community garden, or farmer’s market. 
  • Create a ‘Community Board’ in your classroom to post events in the community for students to discover. For example, family bike rides, family fun walks, cooking classes, gardening classes, fitness tips,and healthy recipes. 
  • Invite a health inspector or epidemiologist to discuss health careers and food safety. ​
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