National Agricultural Literacy Curriculum Matrix
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3 - 5
50 minutes plus homework assignment
Students will learn about a balanced diet and the nutritional benefits of eating almonds. Students will learn nutrition vocabulary and create a meal and recipe book incorporating almonds.
- An Almond Story video (optional if students have not yet seen it)
- California Almonds – Delicious and Nutritious handout
- An Almond Story activity book, pages 14-15, 21-22: My Plate, a Tasty Little Nut, and Recipes
- KWL chart (optional)
Essential Files (maps, charts, pictures, or documents)
potassium: keeps your muscles and nervous system working properly by making sure they have the right amount of water
protein: A basic component of food that is essential for building, maintaining, and replacing tissue in our bodies such as our muscles, organs, and immune system
iron: helps transport oxygen from your lungs to the rest of your body
ingredients: a substance that forms part of a mixture, like in a recipe
fiber: helps you feel full and cleans out your digestive system
culinary: of or for cooking
calorie: unit of energy
Did you know? (Ag Facts)
- By weight, almonds are 50% fat. However, they consist of unsaturated fats, which are the healthy kinds of fat.1
- Almonds are part of the protein food group.1
- Studies show that almonds help with weight loss, promote heart health, help protect against type 2 diabetes, and improve digestive health.1
Background Agricultural Connections
Interest Approach – Engagement
- Prior to class, gather as many almond-based foods as you can. After verifying that your students do not have any nut allergies, have an almond tasting. Try almond butter, almond milk, roasted and salted almonds, etc. If possible, make cookies with almond flour and see if your students can taste a difference.
- Once students have tasted the foods, ask them if foods from almonds would be considered "healthy." Allow students to offer their answers and introduce the lesson informing students that almonds are a healthy treat and that they will be learning why.
- Ask, “Who knows what nutrition means?” Discuss the definition of nutrition and nutrients. (Nutrition is the process of eating the right kind of food so you can grow properly and be healthy. Nutrients provide nourishment from food and are essential for health and growth)
- Almonds are full of nutrients that are good for your body. Have students look at the California Almonds – Delicious and Nutritious handout or project it on the board. Read together and discuss vocabulary: Calories, Zinc, Potassium, Vitamin E, Monounsaturated Fats, Fiber, Protein, Iron, Riboflavin, Niacin, and Calcium.
- As a class, read and complete pages 14-15 from the activity book, My Plate and A Tasty Little Nut. Emphasize that almonds are in the protein food group which is important in building strong muscles.
- Have students share what they eat regularly that are good sources of the nutritional components discussed.
- Optional: If students are keeping a KWL chart, have them add new information about almonds as the lesson progresses.
- Read the recipes on pages 21-22 of the activity book and have students plan meals, or a menu, for the day, incorporating the recipes. Have students share their meal and menu ideas.
- Create a classroom recipe book. Have students bring recipes from home or research different recipes they would like to include. Visit the Almond Recipe Center webpage or the Choose MyPlate Recipes webpage for ideas. Students should type their recipes and compile them into a classroom recipe book.
Watch the video, An Almond Story.
Have students complete page 13, Eating Right, from An Almond Story activity book.
Plan an Almond Recipe Cook-off contest where students bring in their recipes and compete for the best recipe.
Have an almond tasting. Try almond butter, roasted and salted, natural, blanched, etc.
Comparison test: bake a familiar treat like cookies, using different flours, including almond. See if students can tell the difference.
Use the Almond Fact and Activity Sheet to learn more about the production, history, nutrition, and economic value of the almond.
Suggested Companion Resources
- Fill MyPlate Game (Activity)
- Food Group Puzzle (Activity)
- Fun with Almond Math (Activity)
- Jack & the Hungry Giant Eat Right with MyPlate (Book)
- An Almond Story (Multimedia)
Agricultural Literacy Outcomes
Food, Health, and Lifestyle
- Describe the necessary food components of a healthy diet using the current dietary guidelines (T3.3-5.a)
- Identify food sources of required food nutrients (T3.3-5.g)
Education Content Standards
Health Standard 5: Demonstrate the ability to use decision-making skills to enhance health.
5.5.5Choose a healthy option when making a decision.
Health Standard 7: Demonstrate the ability to practice health-enhancing behaviors and avoid or reduce health risks.
7.5.2Demonstrate a variety of healthy practices and behaviors to maintain or improve personal health.
Common Core Connections
Writing: Anchor Standards
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.CCRA.W.3Write narratives to develop real or imagined experiences or events using effective technique, well-chosen details and well-structured event sequences.
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.CCRA.W.4Produce clear and coherent writing in which the development, organization, and style are appropriate to task, purpose, and audience.
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.CCRA.W.5Develop and strengthen writing as needed by planning, revising, editing, rewriting, or trying a new approach.