The Effect of a Summer Garden Program on the Nutritional Knowledge, Attitudes, and Behaviors of Children

in HortTechnology

Fifty-six children were included in a study that evaluated the effectiveness of a garden program designed to teach health and nutrition to second through fifth grade-level children. The specific objectives of the research project were to evaluate the effect of the program on nutritional knowledge of the benefits of eating fruit and vegetables, nutritional attitudes toward fruit and vegetables, and eating behaviors of children, specifically consumption of fruit and vegetables. Children's nutritional knowledge was measured with an 11-question multiple-choice exam based on the educational activities performed. Children's nutritional attitudes regarding fruit and vegetables were measured with a fruit and vegetable preference questionnaire, and children's eating behaviors were evaluated with an interview question asking them what they ate for a snack that day. After participating in the nutritional program, children's knowledge about the benefits of eating fruit and vegetables significantly improved, but there were no significant differences found in participants' attitude scores toward fruit and vegetables. However, the participants did report eating healthier snacks after participation in the nutritional program.

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