Middle School Class Materials

As kids enter middle school and enter early adulthood, educators become even more challenged to keep messages engaging, pertinent, and powerful.  Here are some of the resources we’ve found helpful in our work with kids this age:

Media Smart Youth Media-Smart Youth: Eat, Think, and Be Active!® is an interactive after-school education program for youth ages 11 to 13. The curriculum is designed to empower young people to: 1) Become aware of—and think critically about—media’s role in influencing their nutrition and physical activity choices, 2) Build skills that help them make informed decisions about being physically active and eating nutritious food in daily life, 3) Establish healthy habits that will last into adulthood, and 4) Learn about media and create their own media products to educate their peers.  The curriculum combines media literacy and youth development principles and practices with up-to-date research findings and federal recommendations about nutrition and physical activity. It is also consistent with widely accepted, national learning standards.
We Can! We Can! (Ways to Enhance Children’s Activity & Nutrition) is a national movement designed to give parents, caregivers, and entire communities a way to help children 8 to 13 years old stay at a healthy weight.
CSPI’s Food Day Curriculum Designed for upper elementary and middle school students, the curriculum offers five lessons designed to teach children the importance of eating real, fresh food; cutting back on processed foods; and advocating for a healthier community. The lessons can be easily adapted for older or younger students. Teachers are highly encouraged to use the curriculum on the week of October 24 (October 24 is the official 2013 Food Day).
UnJunk Yourself Another brilliant program by Dr. David Katz (Turn the Tide Foundation), UnJunk Yourself delivers empowering and liberating health messages to tweens and teens in music video format.  Unjunk Yourself is in the process of establishing a library of music videos, each delivering an important and empowering message about health, nutrition, physical activity, and/or weight control. Ultimately, the videos will link to programs that give kids the tools and resources they need to act on the advice thye get and help them make better use of feet and forks!
MyPlate on Campus As children go off to college, they can still connect with community based wellness initiatives.  MyPlate on Campus is a partnership to recruit college-age students to become campus MyPlate ambassadors. These ambassadors will lead their campus community to encourage healthy eating and more physical activity.

 

middle2Nurture Materials

You might enjoy the Nurture Recipe Book developed especially for the teen palette.

Nurture’s materials simply build upon a concept of combining cultural awareness with food, nutrition and physical activity.  We can’t post our exact materials here, since we customize every middle school/upper school program that we work on.  Customization is based on a number of factors including 1) if the school has a garden;  recipes then incorporate ingredients grown, 2) if we have local chefs that can add to the program through demonstrations and guest appearances, 3) cultural groups represented by the student body and 4) what the kids are interested in!  Here is just an example of how we might approach a Middle School program:

Middle School – Example “Cooking Up Fun” Curriculum Overview Chart

Theme

Lesson

Recipes Prepared Exercise Component
Morrocan/ West Africa Wholesome Whole Grains/Break the Fast Cinnamon Apricot Couscous Exercise Gives Energy/Aerobic Exercise-Heart
Mexico Balanced Plate Rice and Beans Red and GreenCinnamon Apples Walking Pedometers
Asia Fruits and Veggies Veggie Spring Rolls Strength Training-Building
India Portion Distortion Mango Smoothie Stretching and Yoga
Italy Fast Food Frenzy Zucchini Salad Burning Calories