I received so many requests from you asking for the lesson plan I followed for my recent talk with my son’s fourth grade class (see Thank You For Being a Friend – The Need for Food Allergy Education in Elementary School) that I kicked it into high gear and began writing it up right away!
In previous years, I had followed a simplified plan accompanied by a food allergy-related book (see the list of books I’ve used/reviewed here). This year, however, I noticed a shift in maturity amongst the kids and decided to capitalize on it and upgrade my lesson plan.
I will tell you in advance, the response to this talk was amazing! The kids were fully engaged, respectful of each others ideas and questions, and clearly connected with the topic.
A few tips to begin: Everyone has a different level of comfortability when discussing personal health issues. Although it is tempting to talk about personal experience or ask pointed questions to kids who you know have food allergies, I would resist this urge. I try very hard to speak about food allergies from a neutral perspective and not single out my own son, for example. That said, if the kids chime in for themselves (as they did when I spoke to their class) all the better.
Mentally allot a couple of minutes for kids to tell you everyone they know who is allergic to everything you can name. It’s going to happen. It engages the kids right away and lets them be heard.
This lesson plan should take about 30 minutes but with discussion and an optional snack you could easily fill 45 minutes.
Have fun in the classroom!
DOWLOAD LESSON PLAN BELOW: