Katie Yamanishi

Publication Date

Spring 2019

Faculty Advisor

Dr. Laura Mood


School of Nursing


Objective: This study was designed to expand the literature on health education in early life populations (ages 0-5) particularly regarding health education and development, through a nursing lens. This study focuses on ages 3 - 5-year-olds, also commonly referred to as preschoolers. Research indicates that low socioeconomic early life populations are at a high risk for childhood obesity, which poses a significant problem from a public health perspective.

Design: The nursing model, Assess, Diagnose, Plan, Implement, and Evaluate (ADPIE) and Piaget’s cognitive development theory were used as a design framework. Children were interviewed through an “assess, teach, and evaluate” model for their understanding of fruits versus vegetables. Assessment questions were asked, an interactive test, “the sticker game” was played, and evaluative questions were assessed. Children who wanted to draw, were encouraged as an extra method of assessing development. By the end of the interview, participants were anticipated to be able to teach back at least one example of a fruit and vegetable as well as an accurate, health promoting example of why fruits and vegetables should be consumed.

Participants: Due to scheduling and unforeseen absences from the program, only 36 of the 40 students who signed up for the study were able to participate. Participants were recruited from three different classrooms at two main school sites.

Results: This study supported prior research linking children of low socioeconomic status to having less exposure to a variety of different fruits and vegetables. Participants, however, illustrated higher levels of health literacy than expected related to exposure of early program curriculum which aided in closing the knowledge gap seen in low socioeconomic children. Secondary to this study, evidence was found that suggest Piaget’s cognitive development theory may be too broad for modern cognitive development in children.


Health education (Preschool); Nursing

Publication Information

NS 402H Senior Honors Project

Copyright for this work is retained by the author.

Document Type

Student Project