Grade: Pre-School
Subject: Science

#2084. Nutrition/Food Pyramid Ideas compiled from Mailring search

Science, level: Pre-School
Posted Sat Dec 16 15:42:25 PST 2000 by Laura/K/TX ().
Materials Required: Books on Food and the Pyramid, Little Readers, Magazines and lots of pictures of various foods
Activity Time: 1 to 2 week period..or as long as you want
Concepts Taught: Food Groups and Food Pyramid

Hi all,
I will be teaching a 2 week unit on The Food Pyramid and Nutrition when we
return to school from a week long break for Thanksgiving. I have looked at most all of the ideas are...CUT PICTURES FROM MAGAZINES of
FOOD...I am wondering what great ideas you have. So I am starting a
compilation of Food Pyramid and Nutrition idea BANK...send your ideas and I
will compile them for everyone. Remember to put food pyramid/nutrition ideas
in the subject line.... Thanks in advance for your help. Here are a few of
mine: Laura
Laura's Nutrition unit ideas.
Used Little Readers book titles (
Perfect Pizza
Humongous Hamburger
1 potato, 2 potato
Terrific Taco
Made these books with the whole class and used sentence strips to write the text of each book and put in the pocket chart for reading daily. We also made a big keep in our classroom library. The kids love the fact that they can read them..and they love the pointers that help them follow the text.
Idea # 1 collage of food onto large, poster board size food
pyramids...children sort and then glue pictures cut out from magazines and ad
circulars. I do this at each of my 4 I end up with 4
poster-sized replicas of the Pyramid. I use many cooperative group
activities like this all year long.
Idea # 2 Food Pyramid Memory game- I made this up last year and the kids
really enjoyed it. I used pictures of various foods that would coincide with
the levels of the pyramid...2 from each group...they were not the same
pictures ...bread/cereal-slice of bread, spaghetti noodles; veggies-broccoli,
lettuce; fruits-banana, apple; protein-chicken leg, egg; dairy-milk carton,
cheese; fats/oils/sweets (otherwise known as junk food group)-donut, candy
cane. I put the pictures on a plain sheet of paper and drew lines between
the pictures so the kids could cut them out and make "cards" for the memory
game. Each picture has it's name below it...with some missing
beginning/ending sounds...I used this to practice handwriting and
letter/sound recognition before they colored and cut out...on the back of
each picture I wrote FOOD PYRAMID GAME so when it was cut out it would
"hide" the picture on the other side....I zeroxed it double sided (of course)
on colored paper (red or dark green works well). The children wrote their
"folder number" , name or initials on the back of each card before cutting
out. I gave some of the kids red cards and some when they play
together...I just say...find a partner with another color of cards from
yours. You don't really have to play with two sets of cards...but it does
make the game last a little longer...and the kids learn to match the pictures
from the pyramid rather than "their" own set. Along with the pictures the
children had a sheet of paper divided into 1/4ths and a small replica of the
Food Pyramid is in each square. As they played the game...and found a
match...they colored in that part of the food pyramid on their paper...they
have to keep playing to get all of the "rungs" colored they will end
up playing 2 or 3 times...Of course the winner is the one who gets their Food
Pyramid completed first...but they all learn some sample foods.
IDEA #3 "Who Goes First" game book-I made a book from folded sheets of zerox
paper...and taught the kids the old rhyme...One Potato, Two Potato...Three
Potato...More... I made sentence strips for my pocket chart and had potatoes
for the picture word in the poem. The children then brainstormed other
vegetables. Maybe their favorites???(Do kids even eat veggies
anymore...thanks to fast food GIANTS????) Anyway I made these suggestions
into pictures/words for the chart so it was interchangeable...the kids used
it during the study to "rewrite/reread" the rhyme.... They then made their own
WHO GOES FIRST book by drawing the vegetable of their choice on the pages.
Cover...Who Goes First- name and kids draw the veggie they are using in the
1st page- One______________________.... some years I have had the kids write
the number word and the veggie name.... it just depends on the children's
level and of course your "stress level" too! The kids drew the number asked
for of the veggie they chose.
2nd -7th draw the correct number of veggies and write.
"MORE page"- kids drew more than seven of the veggies of their choice....
We then used this poem to see who would go first in the Food Pyramid game or
other games played in class.
IDEA #4 Sorting /patterning Veggies I taught them the veggie rap...
Broccoli, Tomatoes,
Zucchini, Peas.
Pass the Carrots,
More Veggies Please!
Squash and Potatoes,
Green Beans that Snap!
Now you're doing the Vegetable Rap!
I bring in (or get parents to supply) the real vegetables and we use them to
retell the RAP! I have enlarged pictures of these too so I can use when the
vegetables are no longer useable. We act it out several times....
I use the same vegetables to sort with using large Venn diagram plastic
circles. We pattern with them too. Some ideas for patterning with them are:
Things I have tasted/things I haven't
Veggies I like/Veggies I don't like
Seeds/No seeds
IDEA #5 Read the book Stone Soup (different versions and make Stone Soup or
Friendship soup. Have children bring in the items you need and make some to
IDEA#6 Bake bread (this year I am having some moms/dads come in and do the
Bread in A Bag recipe for the kids...we will bake it in the cafeteria.) I
read the book Bread, Bread, Bread and they get to look at samples of different
kinds of breads from around the world...I purchased the Lakeshore Bread stuff
for this. You could have a bread tasting party too I suppose, by bringing in
different kinds of bread.
Ok, those are a few of mine...I would like to hear from you....
Remember to reply to the same subject line in order to help compile the Food
Pyramid/nutrition list. I can't wait to read all the ideas...
Idea #7 Made a Personal Pyramid. I had the kids cut out a circle (for a head) and then legs and arms. They traced their hands and shoes to make hands and feet. We took a large manila sheet of paper and if you fold it in half hot dog style. . .and cut from the open diagonal at the bottom open fold to the corner of the closed fold. . .you will make a triangle. . .throw the little triangles away. They glued the triangle to the head as their body. We then cut out foods or (I had some small pictures that I copied from the Aims Winter Book. that had food pictures from all the food groups. I decreased the sizes so that they would fit.) The children then labeled the pyramid (body) and glued on pictures to the pyramid, which reflected what they liked to eat. They added details like hair and faces and other things. These are really cute hanging up! I labeled the bulletin board Personal Pyramids!

The "human" food pyramid. By narniagal
Ahead of time, prepare "sandwich board" type signs from yarn, poster board -
place pictures of various food on them. On the floor, make a food pyramid
outline with masking tape or a tacked down rope. Have kids enter, one at a
time, with the other kids suggesting to which part of the pyramid they
should go
Physical pyramid map. By Amanda prek/pa
After we went through all of the food groups we build a physical pyramid flat
on the floor with our blocks. Then we sort the classrooms play food into the
correct section of the pyramid. (They loved it!)

Lesson site by Patti
There are some good lessons and ideas on food and nutrition at

Placemat by Kari
The children create a placemat complete with plate. They then create a
healthy meal by gluing food pictures on the plate. You can also go to the
Dannon site (Dannon yogurt) where they have a free program you can request.

Dairy council By MholliI
just received a flyer from the Dairy Council about good nutrition lesson
plans and materials that they will send to K teachers. Here is the website
By Denise
The Dairy Council publishes and distributes a very good nutrition program
called Pyramid Cafe. Call them and they'll send one in a very short time.
It has posters, workbooks, a play, lesson plans, etc.

By B Erwin
I too am enjoying the new ideas. In the past our K team has culminated
our Nutrition study with a Nutrition breakfast. We divide the K children
into "teams" and set up 2 cooking stations in each classroom (we have 4
full day K classes). Then the children rotate thru each station and
prepare their own part of the meal and eat it there - kind of like a
progressive dinner. There is an adult at each station to help and
supervise. We have cooked little smokies on a small grill, mixed and
cooked pancakes (a big hit cause they do their own), had purple cow
milkshakes, cut various kinds of fruit, etc. We also put charts with
recipes and how-to's at each station. With planning you can work in all
of the food pyramids groups. We manage to do this with local support
from our HEB grocery store (great company) and parent help. Lots of
fun! We follow with class meetings to discuss what we ate and where it
can be found in the pyramid. And since we discovered Building Blocks,
now we do a class chart and book about our favorite part of the nutrition
The other thing that has been a hit with children and parents is a K
Cookbook. Each child brings to school their favorite recipe from home
and illustrates. Then we copy each recipe for each child and bind into a
classroom book. This is a great "homework" activity for child and parent
to share.
And finally, for our sorting activity we tape a large food pyramid onto
the floor with masking tape and use different pictures that I've
collected over the years to sort into the different groups. The Dairy
council and the Beef council (?) have nutrition information you can
request for free - sometimes they have great pictures

By Karen in La.
This site has some great FREE things teachers can send
off for! Plus lesson plans and worksheets that are
wonderful to download! I got a whole week's worth
(and more that I couldn't use--can't use EVERYTHING)
of ideas from this one place alone!

By Leslie
Use masking tape and make a food pyramid on the floor in the family center. Have the children sort the food from the kitchen into the giant pyramid

Bread in a Bag recipe Posted By Laura from Kindernet site
This is the same recipe that I use. I was told that it got a blue ribbon at
the Iowa State Fair! This recipe is great! My kids enjoyed it. Had mom's come in to help us.
We called them The Little Red Hens!
We ate it with butter that we made from whipping cream.

Also, I saw this post suggestion:
Try this one. It was posted on the Early Childhood chat board some teachers replied that they placed about 3 T. of the dough into 5 oz. wax coated cups, let rise about 20 min. and
baked them in an electric skillet for about 15 min. I've never tried it but it sounds like fun!

By Kari
The children create a placemat complete with plate. They then create a
healthy meal by gluing food pictures on the plate. You can also go to the
Dannon site (Dannon yogurt) where they have a free program you can request.

Museum food by Julie
Great ideas on the food pyramid and food groups! I saw on a wall at a children's museum an idea that children can change
around the food pictures...
Laminate all those wonderful food pictures you have and put the loop part of
velcro on the back of each food. Children can place the foods in the correct
places in the food pyramid. I would suggest making the food pyramid on a
large piece of felt and use tape to out line the pyramid.
They can stick them onto the board/felt.
Maybe even you could rate each group with points... The object of this would
be find __ different foods that total ___ points and place them on the food
Example: fruits and veggies are 5 points, meats are 4 points, etc.
3 foods that equal 14 points would be something like a carrot, an apple and
a chicken leg.

By Casper
I read "Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs" to my class and they had to
remember a describing phrase" i.e. mashed potato rain and illustrate it on an
index card. I drew the food pyramid and they put their card on the part of
the pyramid that the food belonged. It was great! we talked about adjectives
and food groups....

County extension idea by Vicki

I am not sure where you are located, maybe we are really fortunate here in
Iowa, but if you have a county extension office, check with them. Our local
office has put together a 3-ring binder - I can't remember, but I think the name
is Growing in the Garden - that is really fantastic. It has lots of ideas in
it. As I said, check with yours. Good Luck. If mine weren't at school, I'd give
you the name and address for the info. If you are interested, let me know, and I
will check at school and e-mail the info. back to you.

Dairy by Candace New Jersey
Contact your Dairy Council. They have lots of materials and supplies.
There is a whole unit with workbooks on nutrition available to teachers.

Ideas by Leslie
Here are some of the things that I do-
Read Gregory the Terrible Eater and do a Venn diagram of what we eat and
what Gregory was eating.
I got meat trays from the supermarket and had the children bring in egg
cartons, when talking about the protein group. We then attached pictures
and words of what proteins do for us- help give us strong bones, good hair,
build muscles. Their creations were hilarious.
We used paper plates to make a pyramid. I had one serving for the fats and
then divided it among the children in the room and on each plate they made
a food from their food group.
They can plan a healthy day of meals and make a menu.
Read Growing Vegetable Soup by Lois Ehlert and make a big pot of soup with
the vegetables in it. My folder with the rest of the ideas is at school so
I will check it and write you more.

Here's a list of food/nutrition books. By GailSara

Alphabet Soup
Apples and Pumpkins
Berenstain Bears and Too Much Junk Food
Bread is for Eating
Bread, Bread, Bread
Changes: From Cow to Ice Cream
Changes: From Wheat to Pasta
Chicken Soup with Rice
Chicken Sunday
Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs
Corn is Maize
Don't Forget the Bacon
Doorbell Rang
Dumpling Soup
Eat Up, Gemma
Eating the Alphabet
Everybody Bakes Bread
Everybody Cooks Rice
Feast for 10
First Strawberries
Food Chains and Food Webs
Gregory, the Terrible Eater
Growing Vegetable Soup
How My Parents Learned to Eat
How Pizza Came to Queens
How To Make An Apple Pie And See the World
Ice Cream
If It Weren't for Farmers
If You Give a Moose a Muffin
I'm Hungry
Let's Eat
Little Nino's Pizzeria
Little Red Hen (Galdone
Little Red Hen (McQueen)
Little Red Hen (Ziefert)
Magic School Bus Gets Baked in a Cake
Magic School Bus Gets Eaten
Magic School Bus In a Pickle
Market Day
Medieval Feast
Messy Meals
Milk from Cow to Carton
Mouse Mess
Mouse Soup
Noisy Breakfast
Oh No Toto
Oliver's Vegetables
Orange Juice
Pancakes for Breakfast
Pancakes, Crackers and Pizza: A Book of Shapes
Pancakes, Pancakes
Peanut Butter
Peanut Butter and Jelly
Peanut Butter Rhino
Pickles to Pittsburgh
Pizza Party
Pizza Pat
Popcorn Book (dePaola)
Potatoes on Tuesday
Six Dinner Sid
So Hungry
Spoon for Every Bite
Staying Healthy! Eating Right
Stone Soup (McGovern)
Stone Soup (Brown)
Sweet Potato Pie
Taste of the Mexican Market
The Doorbell Rang
The Little Red Hen
The Milk Makers
This is the Bread I Baked for Ned
This is The Plate
Thunder Cake
Today is Monday
Tony's Bread
Too Many Tamales
Tops and Bottoms
Tortilla Factory
Uncle Willie and the Soup Kitchen
Vegetable Garden
Vegetable Soup
Vegetables, Vegetables
Very Hungry Caterpillar
Visit to the Gravesen's Farm
Walter the Baker
We Love Fruit
We're Making Breakfast for Mother
What are Food Chains and Webs?
What Food Is This?
What Happens to a Hamburger
Who Cried for Pie?
Who Eats What?
You Give a Mouse a Cookie