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Lesson Plan #: AELP-NUT0003
Submitted by: Patricia Shubert
School or Affiliation: Willard Model School, Norfolk, VA Date: 1994

Grade Level(s): 2, 3, 4, 5


  • Health/Nutrition

Major Objectives:

  • To classify foods from the school lunch menus into the correct food groups
  • To create a database file
  • To determine if the school lunch menu offers a balanced meal

Materials Checklist:

  • One or multiple computers; printer
  • Software: database
  • Monthly school lunch menus

Time Required: 5 initial class periods; updates, 1 hour per week

Activities and Procedures:

  • Explain the database terms of field, record, and file. Work with the class to design a database template that includes fields such as date, day, choice of A or B lunch, and the five food groups.
  • Enter the information from the school menus into the database. The entire class should assist during the first five days. Then students can take turns at updating the file.
  • Have the class compose a list of questions they would like to collect answers to, and tally regarding the school lunches. They can be fun, creative, or analytical. Examples: How many times did the cafeteria serve the students’ favorite lunch — pizza? the teacher’s favorite — blueberry cobbler? How many times was liver the alternate choice to pizza? Was fish always served with french fries?
  • Explain how to access and search a database. Have the students search the database to get answers to their questions. Have them search to determine if the cafeteria meals are balanced ones by searching for empty fields in the food groups.
  • Update the database weekly. Re-tally and print information monthly.
  • Follow-Up Extension:

    Have the students use graphing software or manually draw graphs. Have them write reports of findings, using word processor if available.

    This lesson plan was downloaded from Big Sky Telegraph.