Adapt It!

Adapt It!

Learning about the Scottish Dietary Goals and how they link to the Eatwell Guide.

This activity requires food cards. Contact us to find out more about how to get food cards for your school.

Food card activity
1.5 hours x 3 sessions

CfE Experiences and Outcomes

  • HWB 3-30a - By taking part in practical food activities and taking account of current healthy eating advice, I can prepare healthy foods to meet identified needs.

  • HWB 4-31a - I can apply my knowledge and understanding of nutrition, current healthy eating advice and the needs of different groups in the community when planning, choosing, cooking and evaluating dishes.

  • HWB 3-15a - I am developing my understanding of the human body and can use this knowledge to maintain and improve my wellbeing and health.

  • HWB 4-15a - I am developing my understanding of the human body and can use this knowledge to maintain and improve my wellbeing and health.

Learning intentions / Success criteria

  • Become aware of the Scottish Dietary Goals.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of these goals by adapting meals taking the dietary goals into account.


*If your school does not have a set of Food Cards, please request them from us at

Setting up

  1. Separate the meal cards from the rest of the cards.
  2. Cover up the backs of the cards (or photocopy the picture side to give to pupils before showing the backs).

Assessment opportunities

DO – can pupils formulate questions about the SDGs

DO – can pupils answer the worksheet on the Situation Report

WRITE – can the pupils analyse a meal in terms of SDGs and discuss how it could be made healthier

WRITE – a healthy recipe to meet the SDGs

Consider CfE Benchmarks, for example:

  • Demonstrates an understanding of current dietary advice through preparing foods to meet specific health needs, for example obesity, high blood pressure.
  • Identifies the factors which may contribute to an energy imbalance, for example, portion sizes, sedentary lifestyles and the resultant consequences.


Warm up/Introduction

  • Explain the aim of the Scottish Dietary Goals (SDGs) to the class. (The Goals describe, in nutritional terms, the diet that will improve and support the health of the Scottish population. They indicate the direction of travel, and assist policy development to reduce the burden of obesity and diet-related disease in Scotland. They are used for scientific monitoring purposes.)
  • Explain the Eatwell Guide.
  • Explain the link between the SDGs and the Eatwell Guide e.g. the Eatwell Guide provides a pictorial representation of a diet that meets the SDGs.
  • If pupils are unfamiliar with the Goals, ask what they think they might be based on using their knowledge of healthy eating advice and common dietary problems – what types of foods/nutrients are included in the goals?
  • Distrubute hand-out and allow pupils time to look through the Goals. All nine goals can be done in one lesson, or alternatively focus on one or two goals a lesson.
  • Allow pupils to make comments or ask questions about the Goals.
  • Link the goals to the necessary section of the SDG’s e.g. the fibre goal to the fruit and vegetable and starchy carbohydrates section of the Eatwell Guide.

Once all SDGs have been covered:

Exercise one

  • Refer to the FSS Situation Report to show where the Scottish diet is in relation to the goals and to learn about how diet impacts upon health.
  • Allow pupils to complete a worksheet on the Situation Report. Ask the pupils, based on the nutrient goals, what foods we should be increasing/decreasing in our diets.

Exercise two

  • Working in pairs or small groups, give out one meal card per pair/group.
  • Pupils identify, from the card, foods which help meet goals and explain why, for example:
    • e.g. the chickpeas in the chickpea burger will help reach the fibre goal and the fruit and vegetable goal.
  • Pupils identify, from the card, foods which do not help meet goals and explain why, for example:
    • the sausages in the sausage in mash will not help to reduce the levels of saturated fat in the diet or peg the intake of red and processed meat.
  • Based on the goals ask pupils to make suggestions how the meal might be adapted to be healthier.
  • Pupils (group) write a paragraph to describe what changes could be made to the meal to make it healthier and feed back to the class.

Exercise three

  • Pupils devise a meal that they think would help meet the SDGs, and write a paragraph on which goals it would help meet, and why they think it helps towards these goals e.g.  vegetarian chilli with wholegrain rice would contribute to the fruit and vegetable goal, the fibre goal, the red meat goal, the fat goal and the total carbohydrate goal. Present it to the class.

Exercise four

  • Home link task – to produce a small poster focussing on what actions should or could be taken to help Scotland achieve one or more of the SDGs e.g. reformulation. Have a class activity to share and discuss posters.



Pupils could focus on one SDG.


Pupils could discuss changes that can be made to the cooking process (e.g. grilling versus frying) as well as to the actual ingredients.

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