Model Curriculum

SSI Lesson Plan for 6th Grade: “Fat Tax”


  2. Students will be able to …
    • Be introduced to the role of calories in giving us energy.
    • Rank several foods and beverages by the amount of energy we could get from them.
    • Give reasons why one person might need more energy than another.
    • Understand that excessive calories are stored as fat.
    • Identify nutrition-related perceptions and aspects in their community.
    • Identify ethical and moral considerations of a fat tax.
    • Deliberate about various perspectives of a fat tax.
    • Employ aspects of the nature of science to their understanding of community nutrition.


    National Health Education Standards
    • Standard 4: Students will demonstrate the ability to use interpersonal communication skills to enhance health and avoid or reduce health risks.
    • Standard 5: Students will demonstrate the ability to use decision-making skills to enhance health.
    • Standard 6: Students will demonstrate the ability to use goal-setting skills to enhance health.

    National Reading/Language Arts Standards
    • Standard 5: Students employ a wide range of strategies as they write and use different writing process elements appropriately to communicate with different audiences for a variety of purposes.
    • Standard 12: Students use spoken, written, and visual language to accomplish their own purposes (e.g., for learning, enjoyment, persuasion, and the exchange of information).

    National Science Education Standards
    • Science as Inquiry: Abilities necessary to do scientific inquiry
    • Science in Personal and Social Perspectives: Personal health


    Process Standards:
    Analyze data, using appropriate mathematical manipulation as required, and use it to identify patterns. Make inferences based on these patterns.
    Evaluate possible causes for differing results (i.e., valid data).

    Literacy Standards:
    6-8.RS.1 Cite specific textual evidence to support analysis of science texts.
    6-8.RS.2 Determine the central ideas or conclusions of a text; provide an accurate summary of the text distinct from prior knowledge or opinions.
    6-8.RS.8 Distinguish among facts, reasoned judgment based on research findings and speculation in a text.
    6-8.WS.1 Write arguments to focus on discipline-specific content.
    a. Introduce claim(s) about a topic or issue, acknowledge and distinguish the claim(s) from alternate or opposing claims, and organize the reasons and evidence logically.
    b. Support claim(s) with logical reasoning and relevant, accurate data and evidence that demonstrate an understanding of the topic or text, using credible sources.
    c. Use words, phrases, and clauses to create cohesion and clarify the relationships among claim(s), counterclaims, reasons, and evidence.
    d. Establish and maintain a formal style.
    e. Provide a concluding statement or section that follows from and supports the argument presented.
    Life Science Content Standards:
    6.3.5 Describe how all animals, including humans, meet their energy needs by consuming other organisms, breaking down their structures, and using the materials to grow and function.
    6.3.6 Recognize that food provides the energy for the work that cells do and is a source of the molecular building blocks that can be incorporated into a cell’s structure or stored for later use.

  6. • Three foods or beverages with different caloric levels. (For example: lettuce, peanuts, and juice)
    • Measuring cups and spoons
    • "Energy Web" student activity sheet one for each student
    • Access to the Internet
    • USDA Calorie Level worksheet for each student
    • “Identifying Important Tenets of NOS” one for each student
    • “Photovoice” Lesson one for each student
    • Digital Camera with Memory Card one for each student
    • “Class Debate” handout one for each student

  8. Humans need energy to survive -- to breathe, move, pump blood, and think -- and they get this energy from what they eat and what they drink. The energy in food and beverages comes from their calories. When we hear that something has 100 calories, that is a way of describing how much energy our body could get from eating or drinking it. Scientifically, a food Calorie (capital C) is the amount of energy required to raise the temperature of a liter of water 1 degree Celsius.
    How many calories (energy) we need each day depends on several things: our gender, height, weight, age, and activity level. The recommended range for most school-aged kids is between 1600 and 2500 calories a day. School-aged children should not be counting calories. Instead they should understand that their bodies need calories for energy and that not eating enough calories may make them feel tired or even sick. They also need to be active every day so that "Energy In" from calories is balanced by "Energy Out" from activity. We call this "Energy Balance." Being in energy balance promotes normal growth and development. Eating more calories than they burn over time puts them out of Energy Balance. Eating fewer calories than they burn over time also puts them out of Energy Balance.

  10. Calorie Activity:
    USDA Calorie Level worksheet
    Article and Related Videos: “Would a Fat Tax Save Lives?”

  12. ::::::::::::::::::::::::::INSERT 5E'S TABLE HERE::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::

  13. EMBEDDED FORMATIVE ASSESSMENT (part of the 5th “E”)
  14. During a single lesson the majority of your assessment of student learning and conceptual understanding is formative in nature; meaning you are asking questions or having students write their thoughts, evidence, and explanations in science notebooks. Formative assessment helps you to understand how well your students are grasping the concepts you listed in the BIG IDEAS/CONCEPTS/LEARNING OBJECTIVES section of your plan. For example, are they struggling with articulating explanations for the phenomena they are experiencing based on the evidence they have collected, are their explanations actually creating more misconceptions, or are they actually beginning to develop some real insight into developing their scientific knowledge of the concept.

    In this portion of your lesson plan your are to provide a description as to what you will be doing to (or having the students doing) in order to “formatively” assess their understanding of the concepts and tasks completed in each phase. Remember, it is this information that you (as a teacher) would need to know before determining if you can move on with your lesson, need to revisit ideas, try a different approach, etc. specific questions you will ask your students at each phase of your lesson.
    Depending on what type of formative assessment strategy you choose, be sure you provide examples. Therefore, if holding a discussion with your students provide sample questions you would ask, if asking them to complete a chart to summarize information provide a sample of the chart they’ll complete, if asking them to develop a concept map then outline the key concepts you’ll ask them to address, etc.

  16. Write two brief paragraphs that describe alternatives for the lesson. Note: this section is not asking you to write a whole new lesson, nor is it asking you to consider what you will do if you run out of time or over time. Instead, it is asking you to think about the various learners in your class and how you will address the needs of all your students.
    • Gearing up – what if you have some students grasp the concepts quickly or they are just not cognitively challenged by the activity you have planned for the whole class? How will you modify or extend this lesson for these students?
    • Gearing down – what if you have a few students who seem to be really struggling with the activity? How will you remediate this lesson so they can still feel like they have accomplished some aspect of the objectives/concepts and continue to work towards the bigger idea?