The tool kit is based on recommendations from the 2005 Dietary Guidelines and MyPyramid emphasizing the importance of choosing nutrient-dense foods. The entire kit is well organized as are the handouts that accompany it. The resource does not contain a structured curriculum; instead it contains background information and teaching materials to assist in a lesson. This method is useful as it allows an educator to personalize their lecture for a specific target audience.
Leader Guide: The leader guide is designed to provide background information about the Dietary Guidelines, research findings relating to education methods, ideas and explanations for the teaching tools, and uses for resources provided in the kit. Within the background information, key concepts are described in a simple and easy to understand way. The research findings include teaching tips from research directed towards consumers as well as registered dietitians. The guide discusses methods of applying the research based information in the educational setting. It also contains research-based “consumer-approved messages” along with communications checklists and quotes from both consumers and dietitians. Additionally, the Leader Guide provides methods of using the tool kit effectively both in an individual counseling setting as well as a large class or community event.
Handouts: The full color handouts are written on or below the 8th grade reading level using the Flesch-Kincaid assessment method. They are colorful with many graphics that relate to the specific topics. The consumer materials have consistent formats and emphasize methods of meeting the Dietary Guidelines. Key information is highlighted in handouts either with colors, bolding of text, or put in a heading. Tips are usually bulleted, providing “action-oriented” methods of meeting the Dietary Guidelines. Additional handouts are on the back of the MyPyramid poster. These handouts are in black-and-white, allowing for easy photo-copying.
The Tool Kit was developed by The Nutrient Rich Foods Coalition which is a partnership of 12 commodity food associations that represent foods from the five basic MyPyramid food groups. The kit does not encourage the use of any specific product nor does it have any sponsor bias. The contents of this resource are all highly versatile for use in a variety of education settings.