Eye Health & Good Vision Message Five
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!
Vitamin A pills can be given to young children once or twice a year (as prescribed by a medical professional). It helps protect their eyes.
- Children will know and feel able to share the message on Vitamin A.
- Children can describe what Vitamin A is and why it is important for eye health.
- Children have reflected on the session.
- Children have planned a question to ask at home to discuss how to make sure everyone gets enough Vitamin A, especially younger siblings.
Materials and Preparation: Prepare white paper plates or cut circles of white paper, one for each child (or pair of children). Have coloured pencils or crayons. Ask a health worker to tell you if there is a Vitamin A Supplementation Programme in the school’s community and find out more about it.
- Introductory activities, e.g. an icebreaker, game or The Memory Line.
- Learn the Vitamin A message with actions too.
- Activity: The Rainbow Plate
- In pairs or threes ask children to discuss what they ate in the last two days. It doesn’t matter if they cannot remember exact quantities. Ask them to think about what they were served.
- Ask each group to make drawings of the food in their notebook, on paper or on the whitepaper plates and then label their drawings. The food items can be either in a cooked or raw form!
- Ask each child to make a tick beside each of the foods that they ate during the week.
- Each group holds up their drawing and one member describes their results.
- Show the children the picture of a rainbow from this book. Explain that…
A good diet is one that includes lots of natural coloured fruit and vegetables. Each week we should be able to say “I ate a rainbow this week!” This is not to say that white or brown coloured foods are bad for us (egg white, fish and chicken, garlic, potatoes etc.) only that we need to include the colours too.
The colours in the fruit and vegetables contain MICRONUTRIENTS. Micro = small & NUTRIENT = something we need to live. Vitamin A is one of many important micronutrients that keep our body strong and our eyes healthy. When babies have breast milk, although the milk is not colourful, the micronutrients are in the milk, but it’s important that the mother is eating a good diet.
The yellow milk that comes for a few days after a baby is born has MANY micronutrients inside it. It is called ‘colostrum’. It’s the most important food for babies to have after they are born.
- In the same pairs or group, ask children to draw other locally available fruit and vegetables that can be added easily to their diet (this is often seasonal and can change during the year).
- If relevant to your context, add that Vitamin A Supplementation is sometimes given to babies or young children to boost their eye health.
- In the same pairs or group, ask children to add locally available fruit and vegetables to their drawings. Especially those that are yellow, red and orange that they know that can be added easily to their diet. (This is often seasonal so can change during the year.)
In a circle, the children say in turn what they learned and enjoyed about this session.
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 children in some families do not eat Vitamin A rich food?
What can we do?