Combating childhood obesity through education and community involvement.
The United States has an alarmingly high rate of childhood obesity, with these rates trending increasingly higher year-after-year. Lowe’s asked us to investigate ways to help alter this trend, reinforcing that Lowe’s doesn’t just believe in home improvement but also community improvement.
Introducing the Lowe’s Lunchbox Project, an outreach and education program for community schools that teaches children where their food comes from via a comprehensive curriculum and a set of digital and physical tools.
Understanding how U.S. school children learn about food choices
Our intial hypothesis began with the idea that the abundance of processed food in US schools has directly led to the increased obesity rate. After reading an article from the Huffington Post detailing the stark difference between US school lunches and school lunches from other countries, it became apparent to us that not only are American children eating significantly more processed food than their worldly counterparts, but this processing has led to them being less aware of how food is actually sourced. With this in mind, we set out to create a program for Lowe's to help educate students about where their food actually comes from.
A Physical, Interactive Educational Experience.
The Lunchbox is the foundation of the program. It is a small, portable garden box that comes complete with everything that a child needs to grow their own herbs, fruit, and vegetables. When used in tandem with the educator app, schools, educators, and families will be able to teach children exactly where their food comes from. The best part? Once they've grown their food, they'll have the opportunity to eat it in real meals, in their very-own school and at home.
Lowe's will be the community partner that both introduces this program, and allows it to be viable. Through community and corporate donations, the lunchboxes and app will be distributed to communities in need, showing Lowe's as a true community partner.
A Digital, Fully-Featured Management Tool
The tablet application allows educators to access a custom lesson plan and curriculum that's tailored to the needs of his or her particular class. Lessons will work in tandem with the physical box to allow for integration with a variety of subjects, all solidifying the child's understanding of how and why food is grown.
The app also allows educators to view their student roster, providing tools to easily track progress and communicate with parents. Additionally, reordering Lunchbox supplies is easily accomplished through the app.
Both the box and the app were carefully designed with their respective users in mind by considering the primary pain points inherent to both children and educators. Through understanding the user's needs, the products will work as effectively and efficiently as possible to enable active engagement and information retention.
A list of team members and their roles