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Brown Rice (3-5)

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

This lesson includes a discussion of brown rice and identification of its nutritional benefits. At the end of this lesson, students should be able to identify the food group that brown rice belongs to (grain) and other benefits of brown rice. This lesson will be able to explain how rice is grown and the main nutrients found in rice. Lastly, they will know what brown rice tastes, looks, and feels like.

Key objectives for students
Expose students to brown rice, its nutritional benefits, appearance, and taste.
Identify which food group contains brown rice
Discuss why whole grains are healthy
Discuss how rice is grown
List three main nutrients in brown rice
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 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.

How To Serve:

  • 1 bag of brown rice uncooked for examples. Show students bag of uncooked rice if they would like to see/feel uncooked rice.
  • Cook 1 bag brown rice according to directions
  • Pass out spoons and cups filled with .5 ounce of cooked brown rice for tasting
  • Ask questions such as “Do you like the taste of rice?”, “Would you buy rice at the store to eat at home?”
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 tasting activities for students with food sensitivities.

Two Days

  • Purchase 2 bags of brown rice, one for showing and one for cooking
  • Purchase small cups
  • Spoons
  • Gloves for those handling food
Materials needed


  • 2 bags of brown rice
  • Small cups
  • Spoons
  • Gloves for those handling food

Rice Handout

Time Exercise Description
9 minutes Discussion


  • Hello Nutrition Ninjas!
  • Today we are going to be talking about brown rice.
  • What food group is brown rice in?
  • Does anyone know how rice grows? That’s right, in a field.
  • Rice is a favorite food for many people around the world and comes in many different kinds.
  • Did you know that in our country most people eat a little more than 20 pounds of rice each year?
  • When rice is picked from the fields, the shell, or hull, is taken off so that the rice can be eaten. Depending on how much of the case or shell is taken off the rice will tell what kind of rice it is. This makes brown rice or white rice (show bag of rice).
  • Brown rice has more nutrients in it because less of the shell is taken off. That is what makes brown rice a whole grain.
  • Whole grains are part of the grain food group, and they are healthier for you!
  • Who has tried brown rice? Do you think it tastes differently than white rice?
  • Brown rice is chewier than white rice, but is very delicious!
  • Rice also comes in different sizes: long grain, medium grain, and short grain.
  • Rice is grown in fields like the other whole grains but when it starts to grow, the farmers flood the field with water until it is ready to be picked.
  • The fields where rice grows are called rice patties.
  • So we know that whole grains are very good for you right? Why? Because they still have the parts that are full of vitamins, nutrients, and tons of fiber that keep you strong and healthy.
  • Brown rice is full of fiber which keeps you feeling full, manganese which is good for your heart, and protein that helps your body build and repair tissues.
  • If you cup your hand, the amount that you can fit into your hand is a handful and the amount of rice, pasta, or oatmeal that is in one portion, or how much you should eat.
  • This is a quick and easy way to remember portion size for grains!
  • Let’s try some brown rice! (pass out samples)
  • I also have something about brown rice for you to take home with you today (pass out Brown Rice Handout).
Assessment Opportunities

At the end of this session, each student should be able to answer at least 3 questions correctly. Questions can be as simple as “How is rice grown?”, “What constitutes a serving size of rice?”, and “What makes a grain a whole grain?”

Standards assessment

Grades 3-5 Health and PE state-by-state standards_BrownRice
Grades 3-5 Science state-by-state standards_BrownRice

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 come discuss with family members what they learned about brown rice and show them the Rice Handout. Encourage students to share with their family members a new fact they learned, such as “Whole grains are more nutritious than refined grains, like white rice. Brown rice has more nutrients because less of its layers are removed during processing, and those layers contain much of the nutrients in brown rice” and report back if their family members knew this fact.