Activity + Eating: My Recent High School Experience


Activity + Eating: My Recent High School Experience

08, May 2013 8:00 AM

High school students are known for making “less than perfect” food choices. Some students skip breakfast or even worse they skip eating on campus all together. How are high school students getting the proper nourishment and have the energy to learn, listen and excel in their studies?

A couple of weeks ago, I taught five high school classes our Activity + Eating nutrition program at Mountain View High School in El Monte, California. During the lesson we discussed  the importance of breakfast, healthy snacking, portion sizes, goal setting and physical activity. We also discussed hunger cues and what prompts them to eat (or overeat). The discussion really resonated with the students.

We played a portion size game using our hands to help conceptualize different food portions, like a fist for one cup of milk or one serving of a fruit. After doing the food logs, student’s set a couple of goals that they thought would be obtainable. Some students said they would eat the school breakfast more, another student said she wanted to walk her dog more often for exercise.

The most gratifying moment: As we asked the students to pass in their workbooks, some students said, “No! I want to keep it for my own use.” That gave me so much encouragement as a health educator. 

At the end of each class, students were able to make their own very own yogurt parfait. Having the ingredients ready-to-go made the students realize how easy it was to replicate this as a yummy snack or dessert at home. Some students went back for seconds. The students loved it!

Since this experience, a breakfast grant has been awarded to El Monte Union High School and this district will be able to serve breakfast to all students for no cost. 

Not everyone gets to spend the day in the classroom helping students become healthier and more apt to make healthy choices from all the food groups, but I did. I enjoyed seeing firsthand how the dairy industry’s commitment to community health through Dairy Council of California’s nutrition lessons is helping teens be healthier, better nourished individuals. I look forward to my next opportunity to teach nutrition to teenagers.

Candice Sainz-Lau
Territory Manager

Tags: Activity + Eating Healthy eating high school parfait

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