Which Foods Contain Sugar?

Grade Levels: 3 - 5


  • The object of this activity is to make students aware that most of the foods we eat contain sugar and that sugar comes in many different forms.


  • Empty food containers with labels intact
  • Pencils and markers
  • Paper
  • Chart paper


  1. Write a list of the foods that your food containers represent. Put a check mark beside each food on your list that you think contains sugar.

  2. Select one of the food containers. Write the name of the food on a chart.

  3. Look at the list of contents on the container. Does the list include sugar? If so, write the type(s) of sugar used. Here are some types of sugar that might be included: sugar, syrup, corn syrup, dextrose, maltose, glucose, sucrose, lactose, fructose, molasses, corn sweetener.

  4. The food contents are listed in order of quantity used. If one or more types of sugar are listed, indicate on the chart whether they are listed first, second, third, and so forth.

  5. Repeat the steps for all of the food containers.

  6. Now go back to the list you made and put an "X" beside those foods you found that do contain sugar. Compare these with your predictions. Are you surprised?

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