Healthy Eating With Kids Using MyPlate!

Posted on February 16, 2012 by rebeccascritchfield

Yesterday, I was fortunate enough to be a part of Panera Bread’s Wellness Day for Fort Foote Elementary School! Fort Foote Elementary School’s mascot is the Bear and suitably, their motto is “Believing in Education and Reaching for Success” (BEARS)! The children that I met this morning were certainly excited to learn and were a fun, outgoing group to teach!

We brought MyPlate to life with an interactive game and an engaging lesson in nutrition. We used our imaginations and helped Andy the Astronaut fly back home to Planet Power, once his plate was balanced so he had enough energy for the trip home! I gave the children an association word for each food group on MyPlate: fruit/energy, vegetables/vitamins, protein/muscles, grains/brains and dairy/strong bones. The children interacted by making gestures (such as making their muscles flex or pretending to peel a banana) and screaming the words out – and seemed to be having a lot of fun! After 5 volunteers picked their favorite food from a specific food group, they handed the food to Andy and watched as his engine fueled up. Finally, it was time for blastoff, and the children helped Andy successfully land on Planet Power.

MyPlate is a great resource, and is more helpful than its predecessor, MyPyramid. The guidelines are clear and easy to understand and apply, such as making half your plate fruits and veggies. Also, the focus on balance and variety, which are key concepts in nutrition. The new guidelines, along with the clear visual, are also kid-friendly so it is easy for your children to understand the basic elements of proper nutrition. The MyPlate logo depicts an applicable visual for anybody to picture their plate and ideal servings of food groups. I think this is a great resource to use in order to plan or track meals – and the MyPlate website offers a ton of cool benefits for free! What are your favorite ways to make half of your plate fruits and veggies?

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