Food Groups: Lesson for Kids

Instructor: Debra Patuto

Debra has taught at elementary levels and has an M.ed with certification in elementary education and special education

Food is essential to life. However, some foods are better for us than others. This lesson will teach you about the five food groups, give examples of each group, tell you how much you need to eat daily and talk about some benefits of healthy eating.

What Do You Eat?

I don't know about you, but I love to eat healthy food. In order to keep your body working at its best, choosing healthy and nutritious foods is essential. Let's learn about the five food groups that will keep your body working to its fullest potential. Beware, this lesson may make you hungry!


There are five food groups that are on the most current United States Department of Agriculture's food diagram called MyPlate. In the past, it was in a pyramid shape, but due to new scientific research, the design has been changed to look just like a plate and cup.

The MyPlate picture can help you to visualize each food group and remember how much you should be eating daily. Let's take a close-up look.

The USDA MyPlate Diagram


What's your favorite fruit? There are so many sweet and juicy fruits to choose from such as pineapple, grapes, apples and pears. Fruits give us vitamin C to help heal from cuts and keep teeth healthy.

Get your 1 to 1.5 cups a day by eating fruits that are fresh, frozen, dried or even blended into your favorite fruit smoothie.

Fruits and Vegetables


Some kids just love their vegetables, while others struggle to swallow them down. Vegetables provide your body with vitamins such as vitamin A that protects your body from infections. Knowing this, surely you can find at least one veggie to eat each day.

Your body needs 2 to 2.5 cups of vegetables each day and there are tons to choose from such as broccoli, carrots, asparagus and avocado.

Protein Foods

The foods in this category are considered building blocks for your bones, muscles, skin and blood. It's important to eat foods high in protein to help your body stay strong.

You can get your daily 4 to 5 ounce serving of protein by eating foods such as meat, chicken, fish and beans.

If you are a vegetarian, someone who doesn't eat meat, you can find a variety of protein foods such as eggs, beans, nuts, and soy products.


Do you eat a bowl of cereal in the morning or have a yummy sandwich at lunch? If you do, there's a good chance you are eating your daily grains. Grains are rice, wheat, oats, and barley to name a few. Many foods such as breads, cereals, pastas and tortillas are made out of grains.

At least half of the 5 to 6 ounces that you eat each day should be whole grain. The grains provide your body with many B vitamins that help give you energy.

Slices of Whole Grain Bread

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