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$1 Million Orange, 3rd-6th | Lesson 2, Series #4

 $1 Million Orange

Vocabulary: Nutrition, Preserve, Processing, Food Systems, Agriculture, Local, Environmental Impact

Grade Levels: 3-6

Click here for #4 Series Description

Science Framework

Spanish Lesson Plan

Lesson Bridge:

Connect this lesson (2) to ‘Ancient Agriculture/Drought Hardy Gardens’’ (1) by asking students if they remember how ancient agriculturists used to grow and harvest crops. Compare and contrast modern day methods to ancient methods.

Lesson Overview:  

In this lesson students will make orange juice to learn the steps and costs involved in processing food from its original form to its final form. The activity in this lesson will promote a natural curiosity about how food affects their health while reinforcing food and agriculture as their connection to a better quality of life. Students will assess the advantages and disadvantages of processed food and its effect on our society in jobs, costs, energy use, health, and environmental impacts.

Suggested Activities & Learning Objectives by Grade:

Essential Question(s) that Connect CCCs and SEPs:


Nutrition-The study of food and how it affects the body

Preserve- To keep safe from injury or spoiling

Processing- To change something by special treatment

Food Systems- The sum of all of the steps food takes to end up in our bellies.

Agriculture- The art and science of growing crops and raising livestock for food

Local- Sourcing food from nearby areas

Environmental Impact- Any change in the environment, whether good or bad, that a product has caused.





Begin with a classroom discussion in the seating area in your garden or in the classroom.  Ask the following questions: What’s the difference between an orange and orange juice? What steps are involved in making orange juice? What do you need to make juice?


Invite students to pass around different processed foods and have them read the labels to figure out what is in them. Alternately ask them to imagine what ingredients are in them, and how those ingredients come from the earth. Would it be cheaper to buy foods like these from a store or make them yourself? Why/why not?


 If you have an Orange in January you can start by reading this and proceed to the following discussion. Have you ever heard about processed foods before? What does that mean? That means food that has had something done to it, to change it from the form it is found in nature. For example, bread is a processed food, because you don’t just get bread on a bread bush, you have to first grow wheat, and then wheat seeds need to be harvested and then processed to make flour. After the flour is made, then it needs to be even processed further to bake it into bread. Processed foods take a lot more energy and work to make. Due to this they are usually more expensive. It is more expensive to buy a can of jam than it would be to buy the fruit and sugar to make that jam with! Today we are going to make orange juice, a processed food, to learn about the steps involved to make orange juice.


  1. Review your Garden Agreements
  2. Divide the class into groups of 5-6 students (slicers, juicers, packagers, mixers, labelers, and transporters)
  3. Have every student wash their hands.  20 seconds, or the length of time it takes to sing happy birthday, is the right amount of time it takes to clean germs off of our hands.
  4. Have the slicers cut the oranges in half and hand them to the juicers.
  5. The juicers juice the orange into a pitcher.
  6. The mixers stir in about half as much water as juice to the pitcher.
  7. The packagers pour the finished juice evenly into small cups.
  8. The Labelers use sharpie and tape to label each cup.
  9. The transporters hand out a cup to each student.
  10. Drink the juice


What did you learn about making orange juice? Is it processed food? What are some advantages of making orange juice at home? What are some disadvantages?

Extension Activities:

Gardens Change Lives!                                                          Page  of