This guide will help you plan a series of successful lessons exploring healthy eating for children aged 8-11 years. The messages and concepts for this module are derived from the eatwell plate – the UK healthy eating model.
The key messages and concepts are delivered through 5 Key Facts:
1. Around the world people choose and combine different foods to make meals and snacks. The total amount and range of foods eaten is called the diet.
2. A healthy diet is made up from a variety and balance of different foods and drinks, as depicted in the eatwell plate.
3. To be active and healthy, food is needed to provide energy for the body.
4. A variety of food is needed in the diet because different foods contain the different substances that are needed for health. These are nutrients, water and fibre.
5. Being active and looking after yourself are important for health.
Why Key Facts?
The 5 Key Facts have been developed to provide a comprehensive and progressive approach to teaching the topic of healthy eating. It provides a framework to build upon, ensuring that consistent and up-to-date messages are delivered in school.
Using this framework, children will be gradually introduced to the concepts that food provides energy and nutrients; have a wider appreciation of different foods and diets; understand the important of balance and variety in the diet; that food provides energy for the body and that it is some of the nutrients in food that provide energy. Overall, this approach will ensure that children can apply healthy eating to their own lives – now and in the future.
It is recommended that each Key Fact is taught in order – to ensure that there is a clear progression in learning and understanding of fundamental concepts. The Key Facts provide an excellent base for creating your own lessons.
Uses in school
Food – a fact of life provides a comprehensive framework for teaching children about fundamental food and nutrition facts. The activities and resources provided are mapped explicitly to the different curricular requirements around the UK.
In addition, the materials support healthy schools initiatives throughout the UK, e.g. Healthy Schools Programme, Food in Schools, Active Kids Get Cooking, 5 A DAY.
For detailed teachers' notes, download the guide below:
Using Food – a fact of life
As described, the teaching and learning about food and nutrition for 8-11 year old children is divided into 5 Key Facts.
For each Key Fact, the following is provided:
- Learning objectives;
- Classroom activities, e.g. investigations, research, ICT, cooking;
- Useful resources, e.g. links to downloadable posters, PowerPoint presentations and worksheets (which can be laminated for future use);
- Sources of further information.
The Teachers' Guide and the Key Fact links (on the previous page) show how each Key Fact can be taught in your school, with ideas for introduction, main task and plenary sessions. These ‘planners’ highlight the most appropriate resources to use – most of which can be downloaded from the Food – a fact of life website.
The Key Fact ‘planners’ and downloadable resources are designed to be flexible and allow you, the professional, to dip-in and use what you feel is best for your school and the children you teach. Feel free to use the Key Fact ‘planners’ in detail or only use the PowerPoint presentations – the choice is yours.
Food – a fact of life fully supports and exploits the appropriate use of ICT in teaching and learning, using a range of interactive activities to enable children to learn about fundamental food and nutrition concepts, as well as PowerPoint presentations that can be used directly in the classroom. However, the Key Fact ‘planners’ also promote and encourage hands-on practical work with food, suggesting different tasting, handling and cooking activities for children.