Food and drink product comparison research and presentation

This is an in-depth assignment that will help children analyze at least one product that they eat or drink. It will give them a chance to look into how that product is advertised, why they drink or eat it and what alternative to the product is a healthier option.

•Students should choose one food or beverage product that they eat or drink a regular basis (at least several times per week).

•Once they have made a decision, they should come up with an alternative product to compare it to. If they select a beverage, their alternative product should also be a beverage. Follow the same rule for food. The students can also choose something that they eat or drink that is healthy and do the project from the opposite approach. They may want to prove that one of their habits is healthy. Some examples of products to compare are below:

1. Soda vs. milk, water or 100% fruit juice

2. A sugary cereal (such as Captain Crunch) vs. a healthier cereal (Mini Wheat)

3. Fruit snacks vs. real fruit

4. Chips vs. crackers (or another baked snack)

Students can be as creative as they would like in choosing products to compare. In the course of their research, they should address the following:

The report should be at least two pages long. If you require your students to type their work, it should be typed and double-spaced. Students should also provide a list of any resources they use to obtain information about each product. Encourage students to share the resources that they used with the rest of the class. This may be done during the presentation.

Students should then present their findings to the class. They should have at least one visual aid. This visual aid should include a category for each product. In each category, there should be subdivisions. They should show what advertising techniques are used for each product and the nutritional information for each. They may add more categories or present the material in another manner, such as a Venn diagram. They may also choose to list the pros and cons of each product. Students’ visual aides may have any additional information or pictures that they wish to include. If possible, the students should bring in a box, bottle, wrapper, etc from each product to display during their presentation. Students should provide a detailed summary of their findings.

*Note: This lesson or research project might be better suited after the lessons on nutrients and nutrition labels have been taught. Students may be able to perform and present better research if they understand those two topics more clearly. It is at your discretion to determine when this project will be the most beneficial to your students.

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