USFA + Pilot Light School Food Curriculum


Urban School Food Alliance + Pilot Light

This Common Core English Language Arts-aligned curriculum for Pre-K to 12th grade students provides a holistic way to connect the classroom to the cafeteria through a set of lessons tied to common menu items and the Food Education Standards.

What’s on the menu?

 Whole Grain Pasta

Eating Pasta Together

Food Education Standard 1: Students will learn how food connects them to others/their family by learning how pasta is made and writing a story about a pasta dish that reminds them of their loved ones.


Growing and Eating Food Around the World: The Story of Rice

Food Education Standard 2: Students will learn about food sources and origins by investigating how rice is grown around the world and eaten in different ways in various locations and cultures. Students in PreK – 2nd grade will identify a rice dish that they have eaten before and where they ate it while students in 3rd – 12th grade will write a story about the journey of a grain of rice from field to plate from the point of view of the rice.

Fruits and Vegetables

Fruits and Vegetables

Food Education Standard 3: In “Seed to Salad: Growing Vegetables,” students in PreK – 2nd grade will learn how food and the environment are interconnected by learning the steps of growing spinach. In “Map Your Meal,” students in 3rd – 2th grade will learn how food and the environment are interconnected by tracing the origins of ingredients in a recipe and investigating how to eat seasonally. 

Seed to Salad: Growing Vegetables

Map Your Meal

Packaged Goods

Packaged Goods

Food Advertisements

Food Education Standard 4: Students will learn how food behaviors are influenced by external and internal factors by reviewing food advertisements and using persuasive writing to encourage others to make a more informed food choice.

Understanding Food Groups & Nutrients

Food Education Standard 5: In “The Six Healthy Food Groups,” students in PreK – 5th grades will learn how food impacts health by learning about the six healthy food groups, identifying food in each group, and creating a meal through drawing and writing that contains all six food groups. In “Nourishing with Nutrients,” students in 6th – 12th grade will learn how food impacts health by researching the importance of a specific nutrient group and presenting to the class.

The Six Healthy Food Groups

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