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​​​​Nutrition education is a continuum of learning experiences to develop knowledge and skills that become lifelong healthy practices. Opportunities to support teens when they are making healthy choices surrounding nutrition and physical activity are always encouraged. This can be demonstrated by using supportive language and informing students that eating is one of life’s greatest pleasures and that consumption of all foods can be balanced for an overall healthy lifestyle. Reframing nutrition vernacular away from “don’t” and “you shouldn’t” can be more effective with teens who have a strong sense of independence.​
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

Understanding Food and Climate Change: An Interactive Guide - Center for Ecoliteracy

​Understanding Food and Climate Change: An Interactive Guide uses video, photography, text, and interactive experiences to help educators, students, and advocates learn how food and climate systems interact and how personal choices can make a difference. Ideal for grades 6–12​ and general audiences.

Dietary Guidelines for Americans 2020-2025

USDA provides guidelines for a healthy eating pattern. ​

California Farm to School Network

The California Farm to School Network is a "one-stop shop" for everything related to farm to school in California, based on the model of the National Farm to School Network.

SHAPE America (Society of Health and Physical Educators)

SHAPE America serves as the voice for 200,000+ health and physical education professionals across the United States. SHAPE America provides programs, resources and advocacy that support an inclusive, active and healthier school culture. ​

The Bigger Picture

The Bigger Picture (a partnership with UCSF’s Center for Vulnerable Populations at Zuckerberg San Francisco General Hospital) inspires young people to change the conversation about Type 2 diabetes by exposing the environmental and social conditions that lead to its spread. ​

Read It Before You Eat It! - NIH Nutrition facts label guide

The NIH provides a food label reading classroom poster​ to support nutrition education. ​

Curriculum and Lessons

Science and Our Food Supply: Using the Nutrition Facts Label to Make Healthy Food Choices - FDA

This nutrition-based curriculum introduces students to the fundamentals of healthy food choices, using the Nutrition Facts label as the starting point, and may be used separately or in conjunction with the food safety curriculum. Designed for use by middle level and high school teachers, the emphasis is on an inquiry approach that is customizable to science, health, and/or family and consumer science classes, aligning with current education standards in these curriculum areas.

EAT RIGHT PHILLY Program - Drexel

The PA SNAP-Ed/ Eat Right Philly program at Drexel University provides a High School nutrition education​ curriculum. The goal of the program is to give participants the knowledge and skills to make healthy choices related to nutrition and physical activity. ​


The Nourish Curriculum Guide ​offers a rich set of lessons, videos, ​and resources to open a meaningful conversation about food and sustainability.

Let’s Eat Healthy - Dairy Council of California

The Dairy Council of California offers a K-12 nutrition education curriculum as well as games, activities, tip-sheets, and community resources about healthy eating and physical activity.


​Partnering with the Family​​

  • Create a welcoming, inclusive climate for parents, guardians, and caretakers.  
  • Host a family health fair that includes health screenings provided by trained professionals. 
  • Survey parents, guardians, or caretakers or host a town hall meeting to solicit their input on the health and nutrition topics or issues they would like to see included in the school’s curriculum. 
  • ​​​​​Students participate in school and community activities that promote fitness and health and educate family and peers about choosing healthy foods by disseminating health tips through newsletters and handouts, the school’s website, and social media sites. ​

​​Partnering with your School​​​

  • 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 nutritious meal and beverage choices (CDC 2017a). 
  • School and district policies are able to address food allergies and the need for substitute foods that provide students the same kinds of nutrients. ​

​​Partnering with your Community​​

  • ​Service learning is another meaningful way high school students learn about nutrition and apply what they have learned in class. 
  • Students analyze the internal and external influences that affect food choices and the personal barriers to healthy eating, describe community programs and services that help people gain access to affordable healthy foods, and advocate for enhanced nutritional options in the school and community by partnering with various nutrition-based nonprofits or grant-funded programs such as First 5 California, Meals on Wheels, a local community garden, or a food bank. 
  • Students research safe walking and play spaces and learn how much open space a community might need, then compare their findings to resources in their local community. ​
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