Packaging Tricks - Lesson Lesson Plan

Level: Primary/Junior

Author: MediaSmarts

Parts of this lesson have been adapted with permission from the Media Literacy Guide, Saskatoon Board of Education, © 1994, and from A Practical Guide for Parents: Advertising, Nurtrition and Kids, a guide created by The Children's Advertising Review Unit (CARU) and the International Food Information Council (IFIC).

Duration: 40 minutes

Reading Media icon from the digital media literacy framework.Consumer Awareness icon from the digital media literacy health icon from the digital media literacy framework

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


This lesson introduces students to the ways in which packaging is designed to attract kids. The class begins with a discussion about packaging and how the design, promotions and product placement all contribute to make a product attractive to consumers. In a series of individual and group activities, students compare similar food products based on packaging and on taste; assess the nutritional value of the foods and beverages they enjoy; and participate in a field trip to a local grocery store to see how packaging and placement affect consumer choices.

Learning Outcomes

Students demonstrate:

  • awareness of the techniques used by advertisers to sell food products.
  • beginning awareness of how they are affected by these techniques.
  • an understanding that products may be similar, despite differences in packaging.
  • an understanding of nutritional labelling on packages.

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

Lesson Kit