When the “Can Do” kids entered class on Friday morning, they noticed there was a paper plate at each one of their places around the table. There were also crayons at each of their places, but, wait a minute, everyone got the same five colors of crayons!
Hector started smiling. Hmm, he thought, crafts the first thing in the morning….how cool is that? It was as if Teacher Pat read his mind. She smiled at Hector and the other “Can Do” kids and said, “Although it looks like an arts and crafts project, it is actually a very important lesson on what to eat and how much to eat to be healthy.”
Miss Pat waited until everyone was seated to give each “Can Do” a plate that had four different colored sections on it and a separate circle that had blue in the middle.
Then Miss Pat asked, “Does anyone know where this plate, this guide for good eating, comes from?” Well, of course Orrie knew and he shared with the class that this plate guide comes from the US Dept of Agriculture, which is sometimes called the USDA for short. He went on to share that the USDA had a whole site called ChooseMyPlate.gov and it explains all about what food belong in each section of the plate and in the blue circle.
The room grew quiet as the “Can Dos” first drew on their plates, then colored them in to match the colors on the example that Miss Pat had given each of them. They also colored in the small circle in blue. Then it was time to use a marker to fill in what belonged in each section they created and colored. Red was labeled fruits. The orange section was labeled grains. The green section was labeled vegetables, which made sense since so many veggies are green! The purple was labeled protein. Well that would take some explaining. The kids knew what fruits and vegetables look like. But, grains…well they were not quite sure about them. They didn’t have a clue what a protein looked like! Most of the “Can Dos” knew what would go in the dairy…things made with milk.
When everyone was finished she gave out a homework assignment. “Bring your plate and dairy circle home with you today. Ask a parent or other adult to to go with you to the USDA site at ChooseMyPlate.gov and get some ideas about what foods belong in each section of your plate and in the dairy circle. when you come back to school on Monday we can all share what we learned from going to the USDA site.