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Healthy Snacks (post-assessment)

Healthy Snacks (post-assessment)

Food affects health and well-being of all living things.
© Cathy Yeulet.

  • Grades:
  • Length: 30 Minutes


Students rank food labels to indicate which foods are most and least healthful and justify their rankings. Students also suggest ways to prevent snacks from spoiling. Student sheets are provided in English and in Spanish.

This activity is from The Science of Food Teacher's Guide. Although it is most appropriate for use with students in grades 3–5, the lessons are easily adaptable for other grade levels. The guide is also available in print format.

Teacher Background

This activity is designed to assess student learning of nutrition and food-related concepts presented in the unit. Examples of the unit topics are listed below. You also may want to repeat the pre-assessment as a post-assessment.

  • photosynthesis as the source of energy at the base of the food chain

  • food webs and the interrelatedness of components in ecosystems

  • where food comes from

  • choosing a healthy diet

  • the persistence of certain contaminants (especially heavy metals and compounds, such as pesticides) in the food chain

  • the contamination of food, especially by bacteria and other microorganisms

  • appropriate food-handling techniques to reduce the likelihood of exposure to food-borne parasites or bacterial infections and to reduce contamination of food by pesticides and other chemicals

Objectives and Standards


  • This culminating activity is designed to assess the students’ knowledge of concepts presented throughout unit, especially those related to personal nutrition.

Science, Health, and Math Skills

  • Making observations

  • Recording observations

  • Drawing conclusions

Materials and Setup

Materials per Student Group

  • paper and pen

  • copy of "What’s Really In There?" student sheet


Have students work in groups of 2–4.

Procedure and Extensions

  1. Distribute a copy of the "What’s Really In There?" student page to each group of students. Explain that they will be using their new knowledge about choosing healthy foods and food preparation.

  2. Have groups discuss the contents of the foods described in each of the labels. Students should notice how many fats, carbohydrates, sugars, etc. are in each item.

  3. After discussion, have each group rank the snacks in order from most healthy to least healthy. On a separate sheet of paper, students should write a short paragraph about the evidence they used to make their rankings. Each group should identify which food groups are represented in each snack and whether the quantities are present in healthy amounts.


Have students evaluate the quality of the different snacks for people with special needs—for example, someone who must eat less salt, sugar, or fats or someone who needs to include more fiber in his or her diet.

Optional Post-assessment

Have students select the same food they selected for the pre-assessment. Have them draw and write a Nutrition Facts label for their foods and answer the following questions:

  • Where does this food come from?

  • What other kinds of organisms might eat this food?

  • To which food group(s) does the food belong?

  • How many servings a day should someone eat of this food?

  • What would you do before cooking or eating this food?

  • Where would you store this food?

Distribute the pre-assessments for students to compare with the results of their post-assessments.

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National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, NIH

National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, NIH

My Health My World: National Dissemination
Grant Number: 5R25ES009259
The Environment as a Context for Opportunities in Schools
Grant Number: 5R25ES010698, R25ES06932