How to Gamify Healthy Food Choices | Sanford Fit

Lesson

How to Gamify Healthy Food Choices

Use a game to reinforce healthy food choices.

Objectives

  • Use the stoplight colors, green, yellow, and red, as tools to categorize food choices as "eat more," "eat some," and "eat less."

Info to Know

Talk with students about the idea that food is fuel for their bodies. “Food” refers to what you eat and what you drink. The lessons in this unit use a stoplight as a tool to help students think about their food choices:

  • Eat More: Green-light foods have the most nutrition for energy and growth, so eat them often! Examples: fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean meat, milk, and water.
  • Eat Some: Yellow-light foods do not keep you fueled up the way green-light foods do, so eat them sometimes. Examples: canned or dried fruit, veggies with sauces, white bread or pasta, peanut butter, and juice.
  • Eat Less: Red-light foods are the least nutritious. It's okay to have a red-light food once in a while. Stop and think about your choice and eat the red-light foods least often. Examples: chips, candy, fried foods, cakes, donuts, and soda. 

It's important that kids understand that some foods provide you with more nutrition than others. Check out the Eat More Eat Some Eat Less Food Chart for examples. For more information about the nutritional benefits of foods and different food groups, read Food is Fuel

Set The Stage

Play a quick game of Red Light, Green Light or have kids explain how the game works. 

To use this with your students click here.

Captivate

Use Games to Teach Healthy Food Choices

Play a new version of Red Light, Green Light. Choose a game leader to toggle slides back and forth.

  1. When leader selects “green light” students march in place or wave their arms high in the air.
  2. “Yellow light” means march or move your arms in slow motion.
  3. “Red light” means sit very still.

Educate

Think About Healthy Food Choices

Stoplights make a fun move game! They can also be used to help you think your food: 

  • Eat more green-light foods.
  • Eat some yellow-light foods. 
  • Eat less red-light foods.

Check for understanding: How will you use a stoplight's colors to choose your food?

Activate

Home-to-School Connection for Healthy Food Choices

Print copies of the Eat More, Eat Some, Eat Less food chart for students to take home and post on their refrigerators. Encourage them to talk with their family members about healthy eating choices.

Option: Print the fit Food Word Search for kids to find healthy foods hidden in the puzzle. Encourage kids to create their own healthy food word search!

Close the Lesson

Today we played a game that helped us think about nutritious food choices. Next we will learn about nutritious snacks. 

Grade: 3-5

Time: 20 Minutes

What You'll Need

Resources

Materials
  • Slideshow
  • Poster Board or White Board
  • Markers

Health Education Standards

  • Standard 1: Core Concepts–Eat a variety of foods within each food group every day.
  • Standard 4: Interpersonal Communication 
  • Standard 5: Decision-Making
  • Standard 7: Practice Health-Enhancing Behaviors

Social and Emotional Learning Competencies

  • Self-Awareness
  • Self-Management
  • Responsible Decision-Making

Extend the Lesson

View the fit Units and Lessons Scope and Sequence Chart.

Related Content

Food, Mood, Move, Recharge

Be Mindful About Healthy Choices

Grades K-2

Learn what a fit-check is and how this tool can help kids make healthy choices. Kids will also learn how to be mindful about their choices.

See Unit
Food, Mood, Move, Recharge

Be Mindful About Healthy Choices

Grades 3-5

Learn what a fit-check is and how this tool can help kids make healthy choices. Kids will also learn how to be mindful about their choices.

See Unit
Food, Mood, Move, Recharge

Time for a fit-Check

Grades K-2

Learn about the times and places where you can perform a fit-check.

Start Slideshow
Food, Mood, Move, Recharge

Make Healthy Choices Throughout Your Day

Grades K-5

Think about the daily choices the two characters make throughout their day.

Start Slideshow
Food

Learn About Labels

Grades K-5

Just like roads have signs, so does your food. Learn about reading food labels with this slideshow!

Start Slideshow
Food, Mood, Move, Recharge

What is a fit-Check?

Grades K-5

Read a story about two characters. One takes the time to do a fit-check and the other does not. See the differences in their outcomes.

Start Slideshow