Teaching Tolls for Schools

Teaching tools - products of the Slovak Food Data Bank
VUP Food Research Institute, Bratislava, Slovakia

The Slovak Food Data Bank in the frame of the national project Application of the Food Data Bank for supporting healthy diet within the National Supporting Programme on Nutrition created teaching tools about nutrition for schools. The main goal of the tools – textbook Eat Healthy and software Pyramid – is to educate children in Slovakia what are healthy dietary habits and how to keep healthy lifestyle.  
The basis of the tools is based on a simple four-storey food pyramid. Recommended dietary guidelines are depicted by means of illustrated food pyramid and foods and simple definitions with regard to children comprehension. 

The textbook Eat Healthy besides description of food pyramid does not forget about drinking regime, hygiene and physical activity as the important parts of healthy lifestyle. Children can test their knowledge of nutrition by various crosswords, motivational tasks and a revision test. 
The thought, context and structure of the textbook were reviewed by a nutritionist, a medical doctor and an educationalist. The textbook was approved by The Ministry of Education of the Slovak Republic as a complementary teaching tool for primary schools in Slovakia. Teachers have available methodical instructions, a separated brochure, in which they can find how to explain particular terms and mediate some additional information to children. As a foundation for the book FAO/WHO recommendations, EUFIC publications and special articles about nutrition were applied.

The software Pyramid: Four-storey health pyramid shows optimal proportion of foods on daily basis, i.e. recommended representations of each food commodity within the pyramid. According to this idea the software Pyramid is teaching children how they can modify and combine their diet during the day in order to meet recommendations. Since the software contains only database of energy value of selected foods, there is no possibility to make assessment of nutritional intake in neat figures. First of all children should comprehend how significantly their food choice can affect recommended proportional distribution of foods in pyramid. They can create own daily menu or check if their food consumption is in compliance with the food pyramid. 
Six categories of the recommended dietary allowances valid in Slovakia for energy value with regard to gender were implemented into the system: children of pre-school age (4-6 year), children of age 7-10 years and 11-14 years, so the software is aimed for age range 6-14 year. The list of foods available reflects mainly the Slovak cuisine habits and meals.
For energy intake control, there is weight-scale which shows if energy intake of a user is higher or lower than recommended. Last but not least drinking regime is possible to evaluate. In understanding of nutrition this software is following-up to the textbook Eat Healthy.


User interface of the software Pyramid:

For more information, please contact: pdb@vup.sk