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Photo by Kenny Eliason via Unsplash

Database Provider

Author

Green Ninja

Grades

3rd, 4th, 5th, 6th, 7th, 8th

Subjects

Science, Social Studies, Biology, Economics, Health

Resource Types

  • Video, 1 minute, 49 seconds, Subtitles
  • Lesson Plan

Regional Focus

Global

Munchtime Mystery

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Synopsis
  • In this short animated video, students learn about the importance of eating locally sourced and organic foods as the characters try to figure out where their food is coming from.
Teaching Tips

Positives

  • The video's primary focus is food, making it easily relatable to all students.
  • The resource also includes a list of questions to be used before and after the video and optional extension activities.

Additional Prerequisites

  • Answers to the questions in the teaching guide can be accessed by contacting the Green Ninja team. The email is found at the bottom of the webpage.
  • Students should be familiar with the concept of organic food.
  • Buying organic, non-GMO foods may not be an accessible solution for every student, so consider bringing up the topic of local community gardens, urban farming, and food desserts to help connect this topic.

Differentiation

  • Younger students can focus on the health benefits of eating more fruits and vegetables, but connect this video's concept of local and organic to these other resources: Modeling the Local Food System and Healthy Plate, Healthy Planet.
  • It is important to keep in mind that many emissions from food come from land use changes and the inputs used in production, not just in transportation. In other words, the type of food a person eats may matter more (in terms of reducing emissions) than where it is sourced. For example, have students research emissions from meat (no matter where it was grown) vs. vegetables or grains.  Also, local produce grown in an energy-intense manner or with lots of fertilizers, insecticides, and mechanized equipment may not be lower emission than fruit or vegetables grown organically from farther away.
  • As an extension, have students research three locally-grown foods that can be grown in season without the use of synthetic fertilizers or pesticides.
  • This can be a hook for high school science students comparing the farming practices for organic foods, GMOs, and conventional foods.  Guiding questions for this topic include: Which foods get the most fossil fuel-based treatments and require the most costly inputs for farmers? What are the side effects on neighboring properties, the watershed, and human health? What are the connections between synthetic fertilizers and nitrous oxide emissions? Which is closest to the principles of regenerative agriculture?
  • Older students can conduct a study in their school, determining where their cafeteria's food comes from.
Scientist Notes
This resource provides teachers with a guide to teach students about organic and non-organic produce. The resources provided includes framing questions to gauge students' understanding of carbon footprints prior to watching a video ~3.5 minutes long. The video centers around a group of friends, along with the Green Ninja, investigating what they're eating and where it comes from. Focus questions along with follow-up questions and extensions are provided. This video along with the supporting material is well-sourced and would make a great addition to a classroom discussing the use of organic foods and what effects organic food production could have on the planet.
Standards

This resource addresses the listed standards. To fully meet standards, search for more related resources.

  • College, Career, and Civic Life (C3) Standards
    • Dimension 4: Taking Informed Action
      • D4.7.3-5 Explain different strategies and approaches students and others could take in working alone and together to address local, regional, and global problems, and predict possible results of their actions.
  • Common Core English Language Arts Standards (CCSS.ELA)
    • Speaking & Listening (K-12)
      • CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.3.2 Determine the main ideas and supporting details of a text read aloud or information presented in diverse media and formats, including visually, quantitatively, and orally.
  • National Health Education Standards
    • Standard 3: Students will demonstrate the ability to access valid information, products, and services to enhance health.
      • 3.5.1 Identify characteristics of valid health information, products, and services.
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