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Milk (3-5)

9 minutes
Primary subjects: 
3, 4, 5
Average: 0 (0 votes)

This lesson, includes a discussion of milk and identification of its nutritional benefits. At the end of this lesson, students should be able to identify the food group milk belongs to (dairy) and other benefits of milk. They will be able to discuss where milk comes from, the main nutrients and vitamins in milk and why milk is good for the body.

Key objectives for students
Expose students to milk, its nutritional benefits, appearance, and taste
Identify which food group contains milk
Discuss where milk comes from
Discuss varieties of milk
List three main vitamins and nutrients in milk
Secondary subjects
Agriculture Science, Health and Nutrition
Healthy choices regarding food, Five food groups, Nutritional benefits of healthy food
Communication skills
Curiosity, Optimism
Real-World Application
Background information for teachers

The majority of 9-Minute Nutrition Ninja lessons include taste tests of the day’s lesson. We have provided an allergy form. Please provide this allergy form to all students approximately one week before the tasting activities to allow ample time for parents/guardians to read, sign, and return to the classroom.

How to serve:

  • Pass out small cups with milk
  • Serve slightly chilled
  • Ask questions such as “Do you like the taste of milk?”, “Would you drink milk with every meal or every day?”
In Advance

One Week

Please provide a printed copy of the allergy form to all students approximately one week before the tasting activities to allow ample time for parents/guardians to read, sign, and return to the classroom. Check your school policies to understand how to handle food allergies and modify the tasting activities for students with food sensitivities.

Two Days

  • Purchase milk (recommended types of milk are organic, whole milk)
  • Provide gloves for those handling food
  • Provide small cups
Materials needed


  • Milk (recommended types of milk are organic, whole milk)
  • Gloves for those handling food
  • Small cups


Milk Handout
Carton of milk

Time Exercise Description
9 minutes Discussion


  • Hello Nutrition Ninjas!
  • Today we are going talk about milk.
  • Does anyone know what food group milk is a part of?
  • That’s right! Milk is part of the dairy group.
  • Who had milk for breakfast today? Did you have it with cereal, on its own, or another way?
  • What are your favorite ways to enjoy milk?
  • Who knows where milk comes from?
  • Most of our milk comes from dairy cows.
  • The cows are milked either by a farmer or a machine, and they get the milk by squeezing the utters of the cows.
  • Did you know that only female cows can produce milk? That is because cows are mammals, just like us, and in all mammals, only the females are able to make milk.
  • Has anyone ever seen a cow? What do they look like?
  • Dairy cows are usually white with black spots and are large animals.
  • The most common type of milk at the grocery store is from cows and comes in varieties of 1%, 2%, skim, or whole milk! These percentages are the amount of fat in the milk. What kind of milk does your family drink?
  • There are other types of milk that don’t come from cows. Nut milk and soy milks are not technically milk, but they are a substitute for people who cannot drink dairy milk. Has anyone ever tried these milk substitutes?
  • Milk is also an ingredient in other food products including cheese, ice cream, and yogurt.
  • Who here likes chocolate milk? Good news! Chocolate milk is a great treat after exercising or running around for a long time because it helps to repair your muscles.
  • Milk is a powerhouse of vitamins and nutrients for our bodies-- a fancy way of saying it’s really healthy.
  • Milk contains calcium, vitamin B12, and protein!
  • Calcium keeps our bones and teeth super strong!
  • Vitamin B12 strengthens your blood vessels and muscles.
  • Protein helps us to build strong muscles and gives us lots of energy.
  • Let’s try some milk! (give milk samples)
  • I also have something about milk for you to take home with you today (Pass out Milk Handout).
Assessment Opportunities

At the end of this session, each student should be able to answer at three questions correctly. Questions can be as simple as “What are the different kinds of milk?”, “Is soy milk technically a milk?”, and “Why is milk good for you?”

Standards assessment

Grades 3-5 Health and PE state-by-state standards_Milk

Grades 3-5 Science state-by-state standards_Milk

Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS)

Science Grade 4
TITLE 4-LS1. From Molecules to Organisms: Structures and Processes
Students who demonstrate understanding can: Use a model to describe that animals’ receive different types of information through their senses, process the information in their brain, and respond to the information in different ways.

Community connections

Students can discuss with family members what they learned about milk today and show them the milk handout. Encourage students to share with their family members a new fact they learned, such as “Only female cows can produce milk” or “Chocolate milk is a great treat after exercising”, and report back if their families knew this fact.