Author: Glenza Lowman
Overbrook Elementary School
Seminar: The Biology of Food
Grade Level: Kindergarten
My kindergarteners are so vain! They make no apologies for what they say, think, or do. They are impulsively motivated by how they feel, what needs they have, and their desire to remain the apple of everyone’s eyes. Not only am I charged with socializing these armies of self-indulgent social climbers, I must, as an educator, refresh their mouths, intellectualize their thoughts and actions with proper expressions of appropriate behaviors and the correct use of the English language. It is no easy task to challenge them to think outside of the box or to appreciate the organic principles and science research associated with learning and growing.
I naturally wonder if my efforts to intellectualize them can improve their understanding of how what they eat is just as important as, and directly related to, their vanities. Could I somehow develop a Health and Nutrition curriculum that would lead them to a “nuance of love” for the science of healthier alternatives? Could they ever imagine the science it takes to get them to eat better? Or is it too early for them to understand the philosophy of “you are what you eat?” Can they understand that a curriculum on the science of food could or “should be achievable with proper training” in order to help them understand how what they eat affects not only their physical appearances, but also their mental and emotional well-being. Could I really get them to think about their lifestyles as it relates to food? Furthermore, how would I get them to understand the “science” behind their food choices?
This curriculum will in fact help my students to think twice before calling someone fat at lunchtime, or greedy during our nutritional lesson. This lesson will address the need of current science practices in schools, as well as, introduce younger children to investigations and research in order to prepare them for future benchmark tests. At its least, I won’t have to suffer the sounds of “EEEW” during gym because someone has eczema or ashy skin. Circle time will be more harmonious without the interruptions of comparative stories of whose hair is the longest or whose breath is fresher. And finally, I will be able to count on my one hand, the number of students who parade in my room late from school proudly displaying their bodega black bag snack purchases they call lunch because they have learned how food affects every aspect of their well being!
Download Unit: Lowman-Glenza-unit.pdf