Nutrition and Health Sciences, Department of


Date of this Version



A THESIS Presented to the Faculty of The Graduate College at the University of Nebraska In Partial Fulfillment of Requirements For the Degree of Master of Science, Major: Nutrition & Health Sciences, Under the Supervision of Professor Julie Albrecht. Lincoln, Nebraska: July, 2015

Copyright (c) 2015 Amanda Marie Robine


Background: Obesity prevalence in United States children ages 2-19 years has been consistently high since 2003.1 These children are at a greater risk for many chronic disease. Educating children on how to make healthful food choices, and using fun characters in a classroom setting may be one step to reducing the obesity rate.

Objective: Increase knowledge about MyPlate and heathy eating in children in kindergarten through fifth grade.

Design: After the development of a nutrition lesson, an expert panel reviewed and suggested changes. Once changes were made the lesson was delivered to second and third graders at a summer camp. Data were analyzed to determine if an increase in nutrition knowledge existed.

Participants: Six members of an expert panel, 6 second graders, and 8 third graders.

Statistical Analysis: Means and standard deviations of the expert panel’s rating were calculated. Percentages of students answering nutrition questions correctly were analyzed and compared from a pre- and post- evaluation.

Results: The expert panel rated the lesson met the objectives, was age appropriate and clear, provided an overview of MyPlate, and followed the Experiential Learning Model. Second graders increased their ability to identify foods from the grain group (+16.7%) and protein group (+16.6%). Third graders increased their ability to correctly identify the number of food groups in a meal (23.2%), and identify the missing food group grain (12.5%) and vegetable (12.5%).

Conclusions: The expert panel was a key component to developing the MyPlate lesson. A small increase in knowledge was seen through this lesson, students were engaged and learned about making healthy choices.

Adviser: Julie Albrecht