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Breakfast Behaviors

A quick exercise that gets students moving as they review their healthy breakfast choices

Tags: nutrition activities, middle school, breakfast

Description: Students exercise and stretch while examining their breakfast habits.
Objective: Students will identify the five food groupings and recognize the importance of eating a variety of healthy breakfast foods.
  1. As students enter the room, ask them to form a circle. Tell them to make sure they have enough room to stretch their arms out without touching anyone.
  2. Explain that they should try to eat different kinds of healthy foods for breakfast because different types of foods provide different benefits for our bodies.
  3. Tell them there are five food groupings, and they should eat foods from all five groupings every day. Ask them if they know what the food groupings are. If not, tell them they are: fruits; vegetables; meat, beans, and nuts; milk and milk products; and grains.
  4. Explain that the food groupings divide foods by what they provide for, and how they affect, our bodies (e.g. foods in the meats, beans, and nuts grouping have a lot of protein which builds our muscles and milk and milk products have a lot of calcium which keeps our bones healthy).
  5. Ask for a few examples of foods in each grouping.
  6. Next, ask them to begin marching in place and to listen carefully as they march.
  7. Call out a specific breakfast behavior and action, such as "Anyone who had an orange for breakfast this morning, jog around the outside of the circle."
  8. Students who qualify should do the action (see below for more behaviors and actions).
  9. After you have called out all the breakfast behaviors, end the activity.
  10. If time permits, review some of the breakfast foods mentioned and encourage the students to set a personal goal to eat a variety of healthy breakfast foods every day.

Breakfast Behaviors:

  • If you have ever eaten apple slices with peanut butter, do five jumping jacks.
  • If you have eaten an omelet with vegetables recently, skip to the center of the circle and back.
  • If you love wheat toast, switch spots with someone across the circle.
  • If you had oatmeal, porridge, or congee (similar to oatmeal, popular among Asian students) this week, turn around five times.
  • If you had milk this morning, hop around the outside of the circle.
  • If you have ever had beans for breakfast, jog in place with high knees.
  • If you like low-fat yogurt, jump up and down five times.
  • If you slice banana into your cereal, bend down and touch the floor five times.
  • If you eat breakfast every morning, jog backwards around the outside of the circle.

Related National Standards

NHES: 1.8.1, 1.8.2, 1.8.7, 6.8.1, 6.8.2, 7.8.2
NSPE: 1, 5
NS: NS.5-8.6

Further information about the national standards can be found here.

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