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Snack Mime

In this new twist on charades, students mime preparing healthy dinners while partners mirror and guess the meal.

Tags: nutrition activities, middle school

Description: In this new twist on charades, students mime preparing healthy dinners while partners mirror and guess the meal.
Objective: Students will identify the five food groupings and share how preparing and eating snack makes them feel.
Materials: None required
  1. Divide the class into pairs.
  2. Ask them why it is important to eat healthy foods for snack (healthy snack foods refuel our bodies with energy spent during the day).
  3. Next, ask them what food groupings are (categories of different types of foods based on what they provide for and how they affect our bodies).
  4. Then, ask or tell them the five food groupings and give them examples of snack foods in each (fruits— apples, oranges; vegetables— cucumber slices, carrot sticks; grains— whole wheat toast, brown rice cakes; milk and milk products— skim milk, low-fat yogurt; meats, beans, and nuts— peanut butter, tuna fish).
  5. Tell the students they are going to play "Mirror."
  6. Have each pair of students face one another and ask them to decide who will be the first Leader and who will be the first Follower.
  7. Tell them the Leader should mime a healthy snack being prepared and eaten using slow, smooth movements. The Follower should try to guess what the snack is as she or he mirrors her or his partner’s movements.
  8. Once she or he guesses correctly, the Leader should finish her or his mime and the partners should switch roles so the Leader is now the Follower and the Follower is now the Leader.
  9. If a student mimes a food or drink high in added sugar or fat, gently guide her or him to think of a healthier choice.
  10. If time allows, ask a couple of pairs of students to mime their snack routines in front of the class and have the class guess. Then reinforce the importance of eating healthy snacks.

While snacking patterns among kids haven’t increased tremendously since the 1970s, total daily energy intake from snacks has risen significantly—from 18% to 25%. Dr. Barry Popkin, co-author of a study on these trends, reports this is an energy increase from 450 kcal to 600 kcal per day just from snacks (Nielsen, Siega-Riz, & Popkin, 2002). Because kids consume such a significant amount of energy from snacks, it is essential that they snack healthfully.

"Energy"/"Go" foods refer to nutritious foods which give the body the energy to go and grow. "Empty"/"Slow" foods refer to foods high in fat and added sugar which can slow the body down.

Healthy ("Energy"/"Go") Snack Foods and Drinks:

cherries peanut butter and jelly sandwiches
hummus peanut butter crackers
nuts low-fat yogurt
water low-fat granola
carrots popcorn (without butter)
pretzels natural fruit smoothies

Less Healthy ("Empty"/"Slow") Snack Foods and Drinks:

hot dogs white bread
whole milk french fries
candy potato chips
cookies soft drinks

    Related National Standards

    NHES: 1.5.1, 1.5.2, 7.5.1, 7.5.2
    NSPSELA: E3b
    NSPE: 1, 2, 5
    NS: NS.5-8.6

    Further information about the national standards can be found here.

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