Eye Health & Good Vision Message Four | Breastfeeding

This message and lesson plan is from our Children’s Participation in Eye Health and the Promotion of Good Vision resource book for teachers and educators. Read more about the book and download it now!

Message Four

For the best eye health babies need just breast milk for the first 6 months. Breast milk contains Vitamin A.

  • Children will know and feel able to share a message on Breastfeeding.
  • Children can describe the good things about Breastfeeding and the problems with bottle-feeding.
  • Children have conducted a dialogue that demonstrates accurate knowledge about the importance of Breastfeeding.
  • Children have reflected on the session.
  • Children have planned a question to ask at home to discuss reasons why mothers find it hard to breastfeed, especially in the first 6 months.

Preparation: Think of two local names for Mother A and Mother B and use these when telling the story.

  1. Introductory activities, e.g. an icebreaker, game or The Memory Line.
  2. Learn the Breastfeeding message with actions too.
  3. Activity: The Mother’s Dialogue
    • Using this table, explain some of the key facts about breastfeeding.

    • Tell the children this story:

Mother A is breastfeeding her six-week old baby. She is discussing breastfeeding with Mother B who has decided to stop breastfeeding and bottle-feed instead. Mother B tells Mother A lots of wrong information (see examples above). Mother A has to persuade her that her beliefs are mistaken.

    • Divide the children into pairs and ask them to develop the role-play dialogue as Mother A and Mother B. Let them do this on their own. (This dialogue can be done with puppets to help ‘acting’ as the over- and under-weight babies.)
    • Select one or two examples of the role-plays to watch and discuss.
    • Ask children to think about what they can do to help promote breastfeeding. Here are some ideas:
      • Encourage breastfeeding mothers to rest and eat good food.
      • Put on a play that tells how baby got diarrhoea from bottle-feeding, and present it to the neighbours.
      • Find out what the health technicians and the national campaigns are telling mothers.
      • Find out if there is any information in school textbooks which is not accurate (e.g. chapters on breastfeeding in the old versions of their natural science text books!)
      • Find out the costs of using powdered milk per week or month and why it can easily give diseases.
      • Find out if mothers continue breastfeeding their babies when the child has diarrhoea.

Reflection Activity

  • Ask the children to get into three circles.
  • Ask them to think of everything they have learned about breastfeeding.
  • Ask them to share it with the two children sitting on either side of them.
  • One-by-one the children should stand in the middle of the circle and say one thing that they have learnt.
  • Tell the children to add to and not repeat what others say. Encourage them to help each other. If they find this hard, bring them back together and go over some facts. Then ask the children to quiz each other in pairs and repeat the activity in three circles.

Closing Activity

Repeat the message together and ask those that know the message to share it with classmates, friends and family. Encourage children to ask this Good Question in their families.

Why is it that babies in some families are not breastfed for six months?

Extension Activity

After checking that the facts are correct, encourage children to perform the Mother A and Mother B role-play at home or in the community. They can also teach other children the facts to use in the dialogues so that they can work out a dialogue too.

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