Feeding our Bodies, Fueling our Minds

byChristina M. Pavlak

"Feeding our Bodies, Fueling our Minds" is a three to four week curriculum unit designed for sixth grade students. It can, however, be easily adapted to meet the needs of students in grades 3-8. The material, created especially for second language learners, is based on Howard Gardner's work with the Multiple Intelligences and encompasses learning standards from language arts, math, and science. It addresses three major questions: How do we make healthy food choices, why do we need to eat, and what is the importance of exercise? Through a hands-on study of nutrition, students will learn that there is a connection between food choice, exercise, and academic achievement. Key vocabulary and concepts such as micro- and macro- nutrients, calories, digestion, metabolism, and the importance of eating a balanced diet will be examined. Additionally, students will develop critical thinking skills as they compare and contrast two popular versions of the food pyramid and reflect about their own eating habits. As a culminating activity, they will complete a series of activities from a Nutrition Multiple Intelligences Contract and will present their work to the class. The unit, therefore, enhances language acquisition for English language learners through content area instruction.


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