At the end of this lesson, each student will be able to do the following:
- Analyze how many calories are burned during specific exercises compared to how many calories are consumed in a serving of different foods.
- Explain the relationship of calories in (consumed) and calories out (burned off) to maintaining a healthy weight.
- Health promotion and disease prevention
- Decision-making skills
- Science standards: science in personal and social perspectives
- Math standards: number and operations; representation
- Red level: lesson 15, "Go-Go-Go!"
- Yellow level: lesson 15, "Go-Go-Go!"
- Blue level: lesson 11, "Moderation"
- Blue level: lesson 14, "Fuel for Thought"
- Purple level: lesson 8, "What Do You Eat?"
- Purple level: lesson 9, "The Nutrient-Health Connection"
- Purple level: lesson 10, "The Balancing Act"
- healthy weight-The weight at which a person’s risk of developing disease (such as cardiovascular disease or diabetes) is the lowest.
You will need the following:
- Eight exercise cards. Before class, set up stations around the classroom with exercise cards and food cards on a table. The exercise cards show how many calories are burned by a 100-pound (45 kg) person in 15 minutes of doing this exercise. These cards can be found in figure 3.2.
- Food cards that list the calorie content of the specified food (see figure 3.1). At least two food cards should be placed on each table. Students will have to add the calories for all foods together to get the total "calories in."
- Worksheet 4.1, In and Out Diner (one copy for every two or three students
- Worksheet 4.2, Activity and Food Log (one copy per student)
- Family Activity 2.1 for Section 1, Vegetable Investigation (one copy per student)
To maintain a healthy weight, people need to eat enough calories to (a) grow and mature, (b) fuel physical activity, and (c) digest their food. If the number of calories a person eats is equal to the number of calories the person burns off (through growing, digestion, and physical activity), this person will maintain a healthy weight throughout life.
Whether people want to lose weight or maintain a healthy weight, they need to understand the connection between the calories their body takes in and the calories their body uses. Gaining weight is usually the result of eating too many calories compared to the amount of physical activity the person does each day. The excess calories are stored as fat, which results in weight gain. Children require more calories per pound of body weight than adults do because their bones and muscles are growing longer and becoming denser. Once those growth needs have been met, any excess calories can be used to fuel physical activity rather than be stored for later use. Being physically active prevents the buildup of excess calories and maintains a lean, healthy body. Thus, when calories in equals calories out, the person maintains her body weight. When calories in are less than calories out, the person loses weight. And finally, when calories in are greater than calories out, the person gains weight.
- Review the background information presented for this lesson with the class.
- Remind the students of the concepts they learned about three nutrients that contain calories. Ask students, What are the three nutrients that contain calories? (carbohydrate, protein, and fat)
- Break the class into small groups of two or three students each. Provide one copy of worksheet 4.1, In and Out Diner, to each group.
- Explain the following to the students: You are going to rotate through the stations to determine if the combination of food and exercise at each station would result in weight gain, weight loss, or maintenance of the same weight. To do this, you need to calculate the number of calories in the food and compare it to the calories burned during the exercise. For example, if the two food cards at the table contain a total of 75 calories, and the activity card identifies an activity that burns 100 calories, then the activity would burn more calories than are consumed by eating the food. This means that the food does not contain enough calories to fuel the activity, so you would burn some of your stored energy (such as body fat) to fuel the exercise. This could result in weight loss if you ended the day with fewer calories eaten than you burned off. Tell the students, You will have exactly five minutes at each station to determine the outcome.
- When all students understand the rules, start the timer. At the end of each five minutes, the groups must shift to the next station.
At the end of the activity, go over the correct answers and see how many groups were correct. Ask the students, Which activity burned the most calories? Which station had the highest-calorie foods?
Each lesson has suggested modifications, whenever possible, to adapt the concepts to younger or older students.
If students are too young to add the calories in the foods at each table, modify the activity by providing the total number of calories taken in. Then ask the students to compare those to the total number of calories burned with the activity.
For older students, have them subtract the calories in from the calories out, which may result in negative numbers. You can modify the activity by asking the students to determine how many servings of a low-calorie food they could eat to equal the amount of calories burned during the activity.
Have the students keep a journal using worksheet 4.2, Activity and Food Log. Students should record the activities they complete in one hour as well as the amount of food they eat during that hour to see if they burned off the snacks they ate.
Each lesson includes assessment options for the lesson and may include additional assessment options for the skills performed within a lesson.
For the Lesson
During the group activity, students will demonstrate their ability to calculate the calorie content of foods and compare those calories to the amount of calories burned.