Niños Saños, Familia Sana: Family Nutrition Education
Niños Saños, Familia Sana: Family Nutrition Education
Niños Saños, Familia Sana: Family Nutrition Education
University of California
Niños Saños, Familia Sana: Family Nutrition Education

Lesson 3.6: School's out--stock your pantry with healthy foods

Background: In farm worker communities, both parents may work in summer agricultural jobs. Children may be left at home, in care of older siblings or other relatives who have limited cooking skills. After work, adults are tired and have limited time to cook.

Children and youth, especially those who are already overweight or obese, gain weight faster over the summer compared to the rest of the school year. The effect of summer vacation on weight gain in youth is particularly evident in Latino and black children. The reasons for summer weight gain may include less physical activity; more screen time; less access to healthy foods and snacks; overeating from boredom; and irregular sleep patterns.


Teaching Tips: This lesson is a review of key messages from earlier lessons, applied to a healthy summer lifestyle. Invite parents to bring older children to the class. Having older children present is an excellent opportunity to teach them how to make healthy snacks for younger siblings.

Target Audience:  Latino families with young children, ages 3 to 8 years

Key Message: Stock the kitchen with healthy foods for meals and snacks

Objectives: By the end of the lesson, participants will be able to:

1) Make a list of healthy foods to buy for their children to eat during the day while parents work and

2) Create some quick and easy meals and snacks using MyPlate.


Two shopping bags with a variety of foods that are healthy or not-so-healthy choices (see set-up)

White board or poster paper and markers

MyPlate poster

Paper and pencils

Supplies for food demonstration (suggested Banana Berry Smoothie)


Click here to download lesson plan Lesson 3.6 School's Out (English)

Handouts and Activity Sheets

Banana Berry Smoothie recipe (English Spanish)

Other Resources

US Department of Agriculture. Snack Ideas for Preschoolers. (Spanish)

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