A Bunch for Lunch

A Bunch for Lunch lesson plan

  • 1.

    Bring students together prior to snack time or lunch and ask them what healthy, or nutritious, foods are. Allow students time to offer their opinions. Write their ideas on a classroom white board. Once students have exhausted their ideas, review the white board list with students to ensure all responses focus on healthy foods.

  • 2.

    Introduce students to the website for USDA Food Guide Pyramid for Young Children. Invite students to review the My Plate PDF for pre-schoolers. Ask students if they can name healthy foods that fall into the categories of grains, protein, vegetables, and fruits. Ask why daily is a category separate from the plate.

  • 3.

    Using pages of recycled magazines with food pictured, have students create two piles of pages. The first pile will consist of pictures of nutritious foods; the second pile will consist of pictures of unhealthy foods. Peers check student accuracy.

  • 4.

    Provide students with a template of a dinner plate, similar to the one illustrated on MyPlate.gov. Challenge students to use Crayola Crayons or markers to illustrate a healthy example of each sub-category on the plate. Peers check student healthy choices.


  • LA: Demonstrate understanding of the organization and basic features of print.
  • LA: Demonstrate understanding of spoken words, syllables, and sounds (phonemes).
  • LA: Actively engage in group reading activities with purpose and understanding.
  • LA: Know and apply grade-level phonics and word analysis skills in decoding words.
  • LA: With guidance and support from adults, recall information from experiences or gather information from provided sources to answer a question.
  • SCI: Use observations to describe patterns of what plants and animals (including humans) need to survive.
  • VA: Use different media, techniques, and processes to communicate ideas, experiences, and stories.


  • Possible classroom resources include: Children's book: Candy Andy and the rainbow dinner (Happy Motivated children's books Collection) by Yonit Werber; Good Enough to Eat: A Kid's Guide to Food and Nutrition by Lizzy Rockwell; Gregory, the Terrible Eater by Mitchell Sharmat; I Will Never Not Ever Eat a Tomato (Charlie and Lola) by Lauren Child; The Vegetables We Eat by Gail Gibbons; Spriggles Motivational Books for Children: Health & Nutrition by Jeff Gottlieb
  • Invite a local nurse or physical education teacher to visit and speak with the class about eating a healthy diet. Prior to the meeting, students generate questions for the guest. After the meeting, students discuss what they have learned through the experience. Write their learning experiences on a piece of easel paper and post it on a bulletin board in the classroom.
  • Students use Crayola Crayons or markers to illustrate their favorite food to eat as a snack. Students may also attempt to label their illustrations with the correct term for the healthy food. Assist students with spelling as needed.
  • Using a small white board and Crayola Dry Erase Markers, ask students to illustrate foods that they believe are healthy. As a check point, each student will ask his peers to name his food and give a "thumbs up" for a healthy food; a "thumbs down" signals a food that is unhealthy.
  • Students create a plate of food, similar to the MyPlate.gov illustration. Students illustrate foods that they would put together for a balanced meal. Take the plate home and discuss healthy eating with parents and siblings.