Author: Juan Austin
Seminar: The Biology of Food
Grade Level: 6-8
The goal of this curriculum unit is to increase students’ insight into the foods they consume from their common school lunch-menu. It will be introduced to middle school students in grades six through eight, with teacher-designed lessons that include hands-on experiments, games, videos and small group activities with an educational goal of inviting interests and improved understanding about the foods the students eat from the government sponsored lunch program. If students understand the biology of the foods they eat (i.e., cell structure, plant biology, nutritional factors, etc.) perhaps they will be more accepting of this food and less influenced by social factors, such as the stigma attached to accepting welfare, or food not purchased directly by their parents.
The lessons of this curriculum will utilize samples of various lunch items such as milk, hamburger, carrots, bread and Jell-O. Students will be able to identify and explain the biological and chemical characteristics as well as the benefits of these foods in order to develop an awareness of the health benefits of the foods that are offered.
Download Unit: Austin-Juan-unit.pdf