Food Model Activities 6 - Label It Nutrition

Label It Nutrition

Grade Level: Junior-Senior High / Adult

Activity Synopsis

Volunteers rank foods for particular nutrients, then check to see if they are correct using the Nutrition Label. Working in groups, they use Nutrition Labels to find foods high and low in particular nutrients. 

Materials and Advance Prep

  • Select Food Models for Steps 4 and 5 or collect an assortment of food packages

Activity Outcome

Students will be able to:

What You Do

  1. Open asking:
    • What are some ways that you can learn more about the nutrients in different foods?
  2. Point out that there is an easy-to-use tool on food packages - food labels.
  3. If necessary, explain how to read a food label.
  4. Ask a volunteer to come to the front of the room. Display 4 to 5 Food Models. Have the volunteer rank the foods from highest to lowest for calories, vitamin A, vitamin C, calcium or other nutrient of your choice without using information on the back. For example, rank the following Food Models for calcium without looking at the back of the Food Model:
    • Orange
    • Broccoli
    • Frozen yogurt
    • Lowfat chocolate milk
  5. Solicit feedback from the group about the ranking and make any changes the group agrees upon. Have the volunteer read the values for the nutrient in question and determine if the ranking is accurate.
  6. Repeat Steps 4 and 5 with four different Food Models (and/or food packages). Once the group understands the ranking process, divide participants into groups of two to three. Assign each group a different nutrient. Have them come up and look through the Food Models and find five foods that are high or low in their assigned nutrient. (Note: You may want to give the groups maximum/minimum % DV, e.g. for 'high' at least 20% DV and for 'low' 5% or less.
  7. Have each group share what they learned and their biggest surprise.
  8. Wrap up, emphasizing how easy it is to compare foods and make informed, nutritious choices using food labels.


Give groups one of the following challenges

  • Find five beverages that provide 20% or more Daily Value for a given nutrient
  • Five foods they can eat or serve children for nutritious snacks
  • Five desserts for 100 calories or less
  • Five main courses that supply 15 grams or less of fat