Target Behavior: Healthy Eating, Food Insecurity/Food Assistance
Intervention Type: Direct Education, PSE Change
Intervention Reach and Adoption
Setting: Child care
Target Audience: Preschool (<5 years old)
- Daily Menu Changes
- The menu changes increase children’s exposure to fruits and vegetables, introduce children to the eight targeted fruits and vegetables and establish eating fruits and vegetables as a regular part of the children’s daily routine. This includes incorporating the eight targeted fruits and vegetables into your existing menus, reducing highly competitive foods and increasing opportunities for children to eat fruits and vegetables.
- Weekly Cooking Activities
- Simple cooking activities done weekly during the program build children’s hands-on experience working with fruit and vegetables.
- Weekly Tasting Activities
- The tasting activities introduce the targeted fruits and vegetables to children in a new, non-threatening context. During the first sixteen weeks of the program, weekly tasting activities in which small samples of the targeted fruits/vegetables are offered to the children. After the first sixteen weeks, the tasting activities occur only during theme weeks.
- Monthly Curriculum Theme Units
- The LANA Preschool Program includes six week-long curriculum theme units offered once each month in place of your regular weekly curriculum. These theme units provide a special focus on fruits and vegetables by including related stories and classroom activities in addition to the weekly cooking and tasting activities. The theme units also provide family resources to help connect families with program messages.
- Bi-Monthly Special Events
- Three special events during the LANA Preschool Program introduce families to the program and engage them in program activities.
Visualz (formerly Learning ZoneXpress), publisher of the Learning About Nutrition through Activities (LANA) curriculum, provides a support website (https://getvisualz.com/pages/lana) with free downloadable tools, videos of LANA in action, and information on purchasing a kit complete with the LANA curriculum in a three-ring binder and carrying case, storybooks, parent newsletters, Lana the Iguana puppet, “I Tried It” stickers, and a set of eight plush fruits and veggies that correspond to the targeted fruits and vegetables featured in the curriculum
Comparing children that participated in the LANA Program to those that did not, it was found that those involved in the LANA program ate significantly more vegetables at lunch as well as more total fruits and vegetables throughout the day. Total vegetable intake was significantly higher at follow-up. Other results showed that the LANA program:
- Increased consumption of targeted fruits and vegetables in the childcare setting
- Increased servings of fruits and vegetables at home
- Reduced “pickiness” and fear of trying new foods
In addition, as a result of the LANA program:
- 76% of providers offer fruits and vegetables more often at snack time
- Parents offer targeted foods more often (81%)
- Parents are more likely to complement their children for tasting a new food (58.7%) and are more likely to say something positive about the food their child is eating (60%)
In 2009, 75 licensed home childcare providers in Dakota County (MN) were surveyed. They reported that after implementation of LANA, children in their care were:
- More likely to eat fruits (67%)
- More likely to eat vegetables (78%)
- More likely to try new food (92%)
|Readiness and Capacity – Short Term (ST)||Changes – Medium Term (MT)||Effectiveness and Maintenance – Long Term (LT)||Population Results (R)|
|Sectors of Influence|
Mary Beth Anderson
Director of Educational Resources