New Resources for Nutrition Educators Curriculum| Volume 49, ISSUE 7, P607, July 2017

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Sugar Shockers: Healthy Eating Activities for Kids

      The Sugar Shockers Activity Book features fun and engaging matching activities, word finds, recipes, and more that teach children the importance of eating foods with less sugar.—Learning ZoneXpress
      What is the difference between strawberries and strawberry ice cream? Strawberry ice cream contains a higher level of saturated fat as well as added sugar. Using this activity book, elementary school students will learn what added sugar is, which foods contain added sugar, and how much added sugar is in some food. Then students will use what they have learned and create a list of no–added sugar snacks.
      This activity book provides accurate information and manages to convey messages that are easy to understand. Common foods consumed by students are portrayed that make those foods relatable. This book is also filled with colors and cartoon characters that attract students' attention. Students can also visualize the amount of sugar concretely by seeing the number of teaspoons of added sugar in each food. Furthermore, the book is organized so that students can build on their knowledge as they go through all of the activities.
      Students are introduced to types of sugar added to foods. Then they need to fill in missing letters of sugary snacks or drinks. Students are asked again about the types of healthy snacks or drinks in true and false questions. These activities reinforce information about the types of added-sugar foods students usually encounter. The activities do not stop at improving knowledge. Students apply what they learn and come up with no–added sugar foods by replacing sugary foods in the menu and creating a healthy foods list. Finally, a crossword puzzle, which is a favorite, is included at the end of the book.
      This activity book has some flaws. Word choices for the crossword puzzles (such as molasses and agave nectar) seem to be difficult to understand for kids aged <11 years. Although the authors may want students to be familiar with these words, students may not be familiar with or remember them. Reading the Nutrition Facts label would be a good place to start so that youth begin to learn these terms. Including a list of different types of sugars using these terms would be helpful to teach children where the sugars are in these foods.
      Nevertheless, this activity book is a good choice for elementary schoolteachers or youth nutrition educators to teach young kids about added sugar. This book can be used during classes or after-school activities, and in designated nutrition classes.
      Cite this article as Lim S.S. Sugar Shockers: Healthy Eating Activities for Kids [New Resources for Nutrition Educators]. J Nutr Educ Behav. 2017;49:607.