National Agricultural Literacy Curriculum Matrix
Eggs: From Hen to Home (Grades 3-5)
3 - 5
Students will trace the production path of eggs, beginning on the farm and ending in their home. Students will identify the culinary uses and nutritional benefits of eggs.
Activity 1: From Hen to Home
- Eggs: From Farm to Supermarket video
- Egg Production Cards, 1 set per group cut apart
- Hickman's Family Farms video
- From Hen to Home discovery sheets
- Poster paper, 1 per group
Activity 2: Egg Nutrition
- How Eating an Egg Impacts Your Health video
- Egg Nutrition activity sheet
- Egg Nutrition Answer Key
Essential Files (maps, charts, pictures, or documents)
- Egg Nutrition Answer Key
- Hen to Home Discovery Sheets
- Egg Production Cards
- Egg Nutrition Activity Sheet
breed: a stock of animals or plants within a species having a distinctive appearance and typically having been developed by deliberate selection
candle: test an egg for freshness or fertility by holding it to the light
consumer: a person who purchases the goods and services offered by a producer
coop: an enclosure where poultry live
domestic: an animal that has been tamed and kept by humans as a work animal, food source, or pet
fertilize: cause an egg, female animal, or plant to develop a new individual by introducing male reproductive material
hen: female chicken usually raised to produce eggs
incubate: to provide heat so as to promote embryonic development and the hatching of young
leavening: a substance used in dough or batter to make it rise
nutrient: a substance that provides nourishment essential for growth and the maintenance of life
poultry: domestic fowl, such as chickens, turkeys, ducks, and geese
protein: a substance that has amino acids, compounds, and carbon, hydrogen, nitrogen, and sometimes sulfur and is found in many foods
Did you know? (Ag Facts)
- The process of an egg traveling from "Hen to Home" takes approximately a week or less.
- When refrigerated, eggs have a shelf life of 3-5 weeks.
- The majority of eggs purchased in a grocery store have white shells and were produced by a White Leghorn, a breed of chicken known for their egg production.
Background Agricultural Connections
Interest Approach – Engagement
- Write the words Breakfast, Lunch, and Dinner on the board. Ask the students to name as many ways they can think of to prepare eggs for the different mealtimes. Write a list of their ideas under each mealtime. Examples could include:
- Breakfast: scrambled, poached, omelet, boiled, baked, over easy, over hard
- Lunch: frittata, quiche, egg salad, egg sandwich
- Dinner: deviled eggs, Pad Thai, pasta salad
- Explain to the students that they are going to explore where eggs come from, how they get to the grocery store, and how they can be part of a healthy diet.
Activity 1: From Hen to Home
- Watch the video Eggs: From Farm to Supermarket.
- Ask the students, "What are the steps involved in getting eggs from the farm to the grocery store?"
- Organize the students into six groups. Provide each group with a set of Egg Production Cards. Ask the groups to work together to place the cards in the order that show the steps it takes to get eggs from the farm to the supermarket.
- Have the students check the order of their cards by watching from minute 1:57 to minute 4:15 of the video Hickman's Family Farms.
- Explain to the students that technology is used in every production step to increase efficiency and decrease costs. Ask the students to describe some of the technologies they noticed from the videos.
- Assign each group one of the production steps below to explore. Provide the groups with the From Hen to Home discovery sheet that corresponds with their production step.
- Hens lay eggs
- Eggs are washed
- Eggs are checked for cracks
- Eggs are sized
- Eggs are graded
- Eggs are packaged and shipped
- Have each group read the information on their discovery sheet, watch the video, and create a poster to present to the class. Each poster should include the following information:
- Name of the production step.
- What happens during this step.
- Technology that is used during this step.
- Interesting information about this step.
- Allow each group time to share their poster with the class.
Activity 2: Egg Nutrition
- View the video How Eating an Egg Impacts Your Health.
- Pass out an Egg Nutrition activity sheet to each student.
- Ask the students to cut out the cards at the bottom of the activity sheet and use the information from the video to match the parts of the body with the card that describes how eggs can benefit that part of the body.
- Re-watch the video, pausing when necessary, and check the matches before having the students glue the cards in place.
Concept Elaboration and Evaluation
After conducting these activities, review and summarize the following key concepts:
- A female chicken, called a hen, is raised on a farm to produce eggs for us to eat.
- Eggs are produced on a farm, cleaned, sized, graded, and packaged at a processing plant, transported to a grocery store, and then finally sold to a consumer.
- Eggs are an important part of our diet because they are a nutrient-dense source of protein.
We welcome your feedback! Please take a minute to tell us how to make this lesson better or to give us a few gold stars!
Visit the Interactive Map Project website and view the map representing Egg Production in the United States. Identify the state that produces the most eggs, then find where your state ranks for egg production.
If any of your students have their own chickens, invite the students to bring some eggs from home. Compare the size and color(s) of the eggs with those that are typically purchased from the grocery store.
Suggested Companion Resources
- Chick Life Cycle (Book)
- Chickens on the Farm (Book)
- Chicks & Chickens (Book)
- Daisy Comes Home (Book)
- Farm Animals: Chickens (Book)
- How Food gets from Farms to Store Shelves (Book)
- One Egg (Book)
- One Hen: How One Small Loan Made a Big Difference (Book)
- The Chicken-Chasing Queen of Lamar County (Book)
- Tillie Lays an Egg (Book)
- Zinnia and Dot (Book)
- Nutrition Posters (Poster, Map, Infographic)
- All About Eggs (Multimedia)
- Eat Happy Project video series (Multimedia)
- Eggs 101: A Video Project (Multimedia)
- Virtual Egg Farm Field Trips (Multimedia)
- Egg Reader (Booklets & Readers)
Agricultural Literacy Outcomes
Food, Health, and Lifestyle
- Diagram the path of production for a processed product, from farm to table (T3.3-5.b)
- Explain the practices of safe food handling preparation, and storage (T3.3-5.e)
- Identify food sources of required food nutrients (T3.3-5.g)
Plants and Animals for Food, Fiber & Energy
- Provide examples of specific ways farmers meet the needs of animals (T2.3-5.d)
Education Content Standards
Health Standard 1: Comprehend concepts related to health promotion and disease prevention to enhance health.
1.5.1Describe the relationship between healthy behaviors and personal health.
Health Standard 7: Demonstrate the ability to practice health-enhancing behaviors and avoid or reduce health risks.
7.5.1Identify responsible personal health behaviors.
3-LS4: Biological Evolution: Unity and Diversity
3-LS4-3Construct an argument with evidence that in a particular habitat some organisms can survive well, some survive less well, and some cannot survive at all.
4-LS1: From Molecules to Organisms: Structures and Processes
4-LS1-1Construct an argument that plants and animals have internal and external structures that function to support survival, growth, behavior, and reproduction.
Common Core Connections
Reading: Anchor Standards
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.CCRA.R.1Read closely to determine what the text says explicitly and to make logical inferences from it; cite specific textual evidence when writing or speaking to support conclusions drawn from the text.
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.CCRA.R.4Interpret words and phrases as they are used in a text, including determining technical, connotative, and figurative meanings, and analyze how specific word choices shape meaning or tone.
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.CCRA.R.7Integrate and evaluate content presented in diverse media and formats, including visually and quantitatively, as well as in words.
Speaking and Listening: Anchor Standards
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.CCRA.SL.1Prepare for and participate effectively in a range of conversations and collaborations with diverse partners, building on others’ ideas and expressing their own clearly and persuasively.
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.CCRA.SL.2Integrate and evaluate information presented in diverse media and formats, including visually, quantitatively, and orally.
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.CCRA.SL.4Present information, findings, and supporting evidence such that listeners can follow the line of reasoning and the organization, development, and style are appropriate to task, purpose, and audience.
Writing: Anchor Standards
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.CCRA.W.2Write informative/explanatory texts to examine and convey complex ideas and information clearly and accurately through the effective selection, organization, and analysis of content.
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.CCRA.W.4Produce clear and coherent writing in which the development, organization, and style are appropriate to task, purpose, and audience.
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.CCRA.W.7Conduct short as well as more sustained research projects based on focused questions, demonstrating understanding of the subject under investigation.