Community Connections: Activity 1 - My Protein Diary (20 min + homework)

Students keep an animal protein diet for 24 hours or study the animal protein present in school meals.

Resources Provided


Print one copy per student of Animal protein in our diets Worksheet. Students may need computer access to look up food labels or school menus and nutritional information. See step 2 below.


1. Introduce students to the role of protein in their diets.

Have students read the Worksheet introduction and answer the questions 1 and 2 in section I. Discuss their answers. These are likely to be a mix of common thoughts about the value of protein in the diet and unit ideas. For question 2, students can examine more exotic animal protein sources, such as rabbit, sea cucumbers or beetles.

Assign the protein diary. Students fill out the first two columns of Table 1. There are two options for the diary. Students can keep track of the animal protein they consume in the next 24 hours. Food labels will help them quantify their intake. If they don’t have food labels for particular foods, these are usually available online. Or Table 2 provides estimates for the protein content of many common foods. Instead of studying their own diets, students can determine the animal protein in school meals. Menus and nutritional information are available online.

Homework: Food diary or analysis of school meals.