Junk Food Jungle Lesson Plan

Level: Grades 4 to 6

Author: MediaSmarts

This lesson is part of USE, UNDERSTAND & ENGAGE: A Digital Media Literacy Framework for Canadian Schools.


This lesson familiarizes children with how and why “junk food” is advertised to kids. The lesson starts with an introduction to advertising and a discussion of the gimmicks involved in food advertising to kids. Students discuss the various foods they see advertised in their daily lives versus the ones they don’t see, drawing important points from this data. With this information in mind, students complete an advertising log and also choose an advertisement and analyzing its subject matter in relation to what they have just learned. 

Learning Outcomes

Big ideas: 

  • The purpose of advertising is to get you to buy or like something
  • Advertising uses particular techniques and appeals to persuade you

Learning goals:

Students will learn:

  • That food advertising is big business and that kids are one of its main targets
  • Which kinds of foods are advertised more than others and the effects of this on overall health
  • Techniques used by advertisers to appeal to kids 
  • About Canada’s Food Guide and the types of foods needed to maintain a healthy lifestyle

Students will be able to:

  • Identify advertising techniques
  • Create a media work 
  • Use advertising techniques in their own work

This lesson and all associated documents (handouts, overheads, backgrounders) is available in an easy-print, pdf kit version.

Lesson Kit