When students are hungry, they are unable to concentrate in class and are likely to put their head down or misbehave. Encouraging students to start the day with a healthy breakfast will alleviate some of these behaviors and contribute to positive outcomes in the classroom. Teachers can emphasize the importance of breakfast in a number of ways.
Action Step: Help students understand the connection between eating breakfast and performing well in school.
- Ask students if they have eaten breakfast and find out what they ate. Have them compare their energy levels day to day.
- Explain that students who eat breakfast do better in school.
- Set a good example by attending breakfast with students.
- Encourage students to take advantage of school breakfast daily.
- Send information about the breakfast program home to parents.
- By incorporating nutrition education into the lesson plan, students will learn to make healthier choices and still get the time on learning they need. Below are some ways to combine breakfast promotion with a variety of school subjects.
- Geography: When learning about different countries, look at what other cultures eat for breakfast. Relate particular breakfast foods to a country's climate, agriculture, customs, and exports.
- Math: Have students survey other classrooms about their breakfast habits and then calculate the results. For instance, what percentage of students eat breakfast? Do they eat at home? At school?
- History: Have students research the history of the federal nutrition assistance programs such as the National School Lunch Program or the School Breakfast Program. Students can find out when the School Breakfast Program began and why it was introduced.
- Foreign Language: Students can translate the breakfast menu into other languages and post them in the cafeteria.
- Science: Have science classes perform a nutritional analysis of the breakfast menu. The metabolic effects of breakfast could be presented as part of a biology lesson.
- Music/Art: Ask students to create a poster or song promoting breakfast. Students could then enter their projects into a school-wide contest for a prize.
|Tools: Breakfast Coloring and Activity Pages, Books at Breakfast, School Breakfast Club, Breakfast Flyers, Teacher's Newsletter Article