- Parent Category: Upper-Intermediate News Lessons
- Category: Health Lessons
- Written by Chris Cotter
Here's some news that won't shock you: Kids absolutely love McDonald's. If you ask any child if he wants to go there for dinner, he'll likely jump up and down with anticipation. But here's some news that is surprising: According to a recent study, kids think that food wrapped in McDonald's packaging tastes better too.
Prior studies almost always looked at individual advertisements, and how the ads influenced the young. But a recent study examined the company's total affect. In recent years, many fast food restaurants are under pressure from experts who are concerned about the health and obesity of children.
Sixty-three children between the ages of three and five were offered five pairs of food: two sets of burgers, two sets of fries, and so on. One burger, for example, was placed in McDonald's packaging. The other burger was placed in plain packaging. The children were then asked if the food tasted identical, or if one tasted better than the other. 48% liked the hamburgers and 70% liked the fries better when they thought the food had come from McDonald's. But kids thought that carrots tasted better when they came from the fast food chain. They also liked the milk better too.
More and more nutrition experts want to control or completely ban advertising for unhealthy food aimed at children. But a spokesperson from McDonald's said that the company has been working towards more responsible marketing for children. The study should still raise alarm bells in parents, though. Most of the advertising from McDonald's promotes food with low nutritional value.
Preview some of the lesson material:
Title: Speculate and/or discuss the contents of today's article from its title: "Kids Are Lovin' It!"
Fill in the Blank: Fill in the blank with the correct word.
- Kids ( ) love McDonald's.
- If you ask any child if he wants to go there, he'll likely jump up and down with ( ).
- Kids think that food ( ) in McDonald's packaging tastes better.
- ( ) studies almost always looked at individual advertisements.
- Studies also looked at how the ads ( ) the young.
- Fast food restaurants are under pressure from experts ( ) about the health of children.
- The children were then asked if the food tasted ( ), or if one tasted better than the other.
- More nutrition experts want to ( ) advertising for unhealthy food aimed at children.
- A ( ) said that the company has been working towards responsible marketing.
- McDonald's ( ) food with low nutritional value.
post-Comprehension: Talk about the following questions in pairs/groups. Remember to support your answers!
- If you ate fast food every day for one month, what would happen to you? Why do you think so?
- What is the main reason for McDonald's success? Is it their marketing, the taste, or convenience?
- Why do kids love McDonald's so much?
- Is it good or bad that children associate McDonald's with better tasting food? Why do you think so?
- Are fast food companies morally responsible for unhealthy and obese children? Why/not?
Google Search: Type "fast food" into Google. Look at the websites, and/or read additional articles on this topic. Discuss or write an essay about your findings.