This past spring, 50 first and second grade students at Major Edwards Elementary School in West Boylston, MA received a lesson on the importance of eating fruits and vegetables. This lesson, entitled “Eat a Rainbow” and taught by graduate FSU Food and Nutrition intern Kirtan Singh, featured both original content as well as components adapted from Bergen County’s “Ever Taste a Rainbow?” lesson. The goal? To introduce elementary age children to the importance of eating a “rainbow” of colors of fruits and vegetables.
During the lesson, students were first shown pictures of different fruits and vegetables and introduced to produce from different color groups (yellow, red, green, blue/violet, white, and orange).
Next, students were divided into groups, one group for each color, and were asked to run an obstacle course in the gymnasium. At the end of each obstacle, an intern or teacher asked each student to name a fruit or vegetable in a certain color group. This allowed the students to become more familiar with the fruits and vegetables in the rainbow, while being physically active.
The West Boylston Public School Wellness Policy calls on educators to “provide more opportunities for students to engage in physical activity,” as well as to “support and promote proper dietary habits contributing to students’ health status and academic performance.” Incorporating nutrition into physical education classes can help reinforce nutrition concepts, while achieving the wellness policy goals.
Visit the JSI Resource Center for information on ways to integrate nutrition education into PE. For more resources on wellness policies and ways to incorporate nutrition education at your school, visit JSI’s School Wellness Initiative and Policies page and the Wellness Solution for Massachusetts website.
~ blog provided by Kirtan Singh, FSU Food and Nutrition Graduate Student