Extension Nutrition Education Program

Educator Materials

Educator materials are divided by their appropriate age ranges: 

Early Childhood – Pre K and Kindergarten

Activity Sheets

These 8.5 X 11-inch activity sheets promote physical activity and eating fruits and vegetables. 

These activity sheets are designed to supplement nutrition lessons in schools, as a take-home to share with parents or care providers. Each 8.5 X 11 page has 4 of the same handouts. They are available in English on one side and Spanish on the other.

Activity sheets with recipe designed to supplement nutrition lessons, as a take-home to share with parents or care providers. Each 8.5 X 11 page has 2 of the same handout. They are available in English on one side and Spanish on the other.

Newsletters

The Pumpkin Post/Banana Beat and El Recaito/Sabrosito (Spanish version) newsletters are educational and fun newsletters for parents or caregivers of preschool children. Each issue contains a special insert (11 X 17-inch) called The Banana Beat or Sabrosito in the Spanish version, each with activities designed for the children themselves or to do with parents and caregivers. The Pumpkin Post or El Recaito newsletter includes delicious and nutritious recipes, regular columns on child feeding challenges, seasonal foods, menu ideas, "Ask Dr. Green Bean," and "Marvelous Morsels," which address topical nutrition issues and questions.

The Banana Beat or Sabrosito insert features a fold-open activity poster for children, a special children's recipe, a fairy tale, and a fun physical activity. The pair comes in a series of six issues with themes about breakfast, fitness, fruits and vegetables, healthy lunches, goal setting and holiday eating.

The Pumpkin Post/Banana Beat:

El Recaito:

Sabrosito:

Elementary - Grades 1 - 6

Activity Sheets

These single-sided 8.5 X 11-inch activity sheets promote physical activity and eating fruits and vegetables. They are available in English only.

These single-sided 8.5 X 11-inch activity sheets promote making healthier food choices and understanding label reading. They are available in English only.

Activity sheets with recipe, designed to supplement nutrition lessons, as a take-home to share with parents or care providers. Each 8.5 X 11 page has 2 of the same handout. They are available in English on one side and Spanish on the other.

Newsletters

Explore Massachusetts: Travels and Tastes Through Time is a newsletter for children in grades 4-6 and their families. This series features food, nutrition, and physical activity in the context of Massachusetts history and is a great supplement for teachers using the Massachusetts educational frameworks. Students will learn how children lived in different periods, how they ate, and what they did for work and play. Features include articles about children's lives in four different historical time periods, a timeline, "Ask Boston Bean," a recipe and some enrichment questions or activities to enhance student learning.

Explore Massachusetts: Travels and Tastes Through Time may be previewed below, download as pdf file or purchased in quantity at the UMass Extension Bookstore.

Poster and Handout Series

The Food Explorer Discovery poster series consists of 12 monthly, 11 X 17-inch full-color posters. They promote in-season fruits and vegetables for elementary school students. Each poster has a black/white companion handout for parents featuring tips for purchasing and storing the featured produce, fun facts, a recipe, and additional snack ideas for the featured fruits or vegetables. The color posters are available in English only, and the 8.5 X 11-inch parent handouts are in English and Spanish.

The series may be previewed in pdf format by clicking on the Food Explorer Discovery links below or purchased through the UMass Extension Bookstore.

Food Explorer Discovery:

(supplied in pdf format below or can be purchased from the UMass Extension Bookstore by clicking on the "Buy Now" link above).

Middle and Secondary – Grades 7-12 and young adults

Activity Sheets

This single-sided 8.5 X 11-inch activity sheet promotes food safety and understanding foodborne illness. It is available in English only.

These single-sided 8.5 X 11 activity sheets promote making healthier food choices and understanding label reading. They are available in English only.

Newsletters

Nutrition Notes to Go is a monthly newsletter series providing topical nutrition information, a “keep moving” tip, and a seasonal buying guide with corresponding recipe. The newsletter is 8.5 X 14 with English on one side and Spanish on the other.

The newsletter series may be previewed in pdf format or purchased through the UMass Extension Bookstore.

Nutrition Notes to Go:

Poster and handout series

The secondary grades Food Explorer Discovery poster series consists of 12 monthly, 11 X 17-inch full-color posters. They promote in-season fruits and vegetables for secondary school students. Each poster has a black/white companion handout for parents, featuring tips for purchasing and storing the featured produce, fun facts, a recipe, and additional snack ideas for the featured fruits or vegetables. The color posters are available in English only and the 8.5 X 11-inch parent handouts are in English and Spanish.

The series may be previewed in pdf format by clicking on the Food Explorer Discovery links below or purchased through the UMass Extension Bookstore.

Food Explorer Discovery:

(supplied in pdf format below or can be purchased from the UMass Extension Bookstore by clicking on the "Buy Now" link above.)

Booklets

The Fast Food Nutrition Guide is a 12-page booklet that lists the calories, sodium and fat content of popular food and beverage items from 10 common fast food restaurants. It's a quick and easy guide to help you make healthy choices at your favorite fast food restaurant.

Fast Food Nutrition Guide pdf icon

Quantities are available for purchase through the UMass Extension Bookstore.

Buy Fresh Booklets

Buy Fresh! Enjoy Fruits and Vegetables from Massachusetts Farmers Markets is a 24-page nutrition information booklet that covers storing fruits and vegetables, nutrient values of produce by color, serving size information, and recipes for produce abundant in New England farmers’ markets. Booklets are available in English and Spanish.

Buy Fresh pdf icon

¡Compre productos frescos! pdf icon

Adult Materials

Choices: Steps Toward Health is an exciting research-based curriculum designed for the Expanded Food and Nutrition Education Program (EFNEP) and Family Nutrition Program (FNP). Based on principles and practices of adult education, CHOICES shows respect for learners by inviting them to become co-teachers and teachers to become co-learners through dialogue and engagement. 

The curriculum includes seven core lessons:

  • Welcome booklet
  • Moving to the Mambo and Get Moving booklet
  • Whole Grain Twist
  • Fruit and Veggie Salsa
  • Low-fat Limbo
  • Kitchen Calypso
  • Food Safety Four-Step
  • Foods a Go-Go and Fast Food Nutrition Guide

Each lesson features lively music and movement, objective-based learning tasks, personal goal-setting and follow-up, and a variety of hands-on activities based on the Dietary Guidelines.  Most lessons also include food preparation and tasting.

The curriculum is also unique in its creative packaging and design. Curriculum participants receive an attractive, plastic storage envelop that they can keep in their kitchens. 

Each set includes:

  • A welcome booklet that describes the curriculum, offers tips for label-reading and goal-setting, and includes basic reference materials such the current Dietary Guidelines, MyPyramid, and a glossary of terms.
  • Separate booklets for each lesson, so the curriculum can be tailored to participant needs.
  • A booklet with simple movement activities that can easily be done at home.
  • A spiral-bound recipe booklet with a glossary of cooking terms and nearly 60 recipes coded according to the lessons they reinforce. 

Educators receive a set of teaching aides, coded by color and icon to each lesson.  These include colorful posters and food labels, food models, and other supplies for teaching including measuring cups and spoons, portion size props, a food safety Bingo game, homemade digestive system, and many more.

The Choices: Steps Toward Health curriculum is also available in Spanish.