Purdue Extension in the College of Health and Human Sciences (HHS) is a network of county-based Extension Educators that serve all 92 Indiana counties. These Educators draw upon research and expertise from Purdue University to educate communities and help identify practical solutions to local needs. HHS Extension delivers educational programs, applied research and resources to your community, with a focus on issues related to food, family, money and health. Every year, Purdue Extension Health and Human Sciences reaches more than 1 million residents with our educational programs– improve quality of life for individuals and families across Indiana.

Connect with a Purdue Educator Near You

Through cooperation with the Purdue University Cooperative Extension Service, IEHA offers a wide range of lessons at no charge. Program areas include:

  • Foods and Nutrition
  • Human Development
  • Family Resource Management
  • Health
  • Special Interest Lessons


Select an area of interest

Food and Nutrition

Eating Well for your Eyes

Area 2: Molly Marshall, Jackson County & Annette Lawler, Harrison County

In this lesson you will learn what is age-related macular degeneration (AMD), the two types of AMD and the most common risk factors. This lesson contains a simple test to screen for vision problems and emphasizes the importance of seeing your eye doctor for regularly scheduled eye exams. Lastly, a focus on eating well for your eyes with particular attention to vitamins and nutrients that may reduce vision loss will be highlighted.

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Make the Nutrition Facts Label a Tool You Know How to Use

Area 11: Abigail E. Creigh, Noble County

The Nutrition Facts label is an important tool to use. Consumers are more likely to make healthy food & beverages choices, if the Nutrition Facts label is understood. In this lesson, the U.S. Food & Drug Administration will: help consumers better understand the Nutrition Facts label, identify nutrients we need less of & those we need more of, and give 3 tips to make healthier choices.

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The New Food Guidelines for Americans

Area 7: Amanda Bullion, Jay County

In this lesson you will be updated about the new changes made by the USDA and the US Health & Human Science Department regarding the food guidelines. Every 5 years new guidelines with updated science and nutrition information are released. In December of 2020 new guidelines were published with an emphasis on nutrition throughout the lifespan.

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Superfoods: Fruits & Vegetables

Provided By Area 1: Angela Rathert, Jefferson County

Participants will identify why fruits and vegetables are so important to include in a healthy diet. Participants will increase the amount of fruits and vegetables they eat each day.

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Coconut Craze

Provided By Area 6: Christina Ferroli, Marion County

Learn about coconut oil and its uses.

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Cooking with Honey

Provided By Area 2: Janet Steffens, Floyd County

Honey can be used for cooking and adds small amounts of nutrients to the diet. It makes a good spread for breads and tasty sandwich fillings when mixed with other ingredients. Honey can be used as a sweetener for fruits, beverages, and in any food that is sweetened, including baked goods. This lesson includes delicious recipes using honey and will explain many ideas and uses for honey.

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Gluten Free - The Gluten Basics

Provided By Area 11: Abigail Creigh, Noble County

What is gluten? What foods have gluten? Are foods naturally gluten-free? Who benefits from a gluten-free diet? In this lesson, you will gain the answers to these questions, along with an understanding of our growing gluten-free community. Due to the popular demand for gluten-free products, in 2013, the U.S. Food & Drug Administration issued a definition of the term gluten-free. As well, gluten-free products are now easier for consumers to identify by the “certified gluten-free” seals on products and to order in restaurants from gluten-free menus.

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Dinner's Ready...But is it Safe?

Provided By Area 3: Jane Jett, Posey County & Brenda Hagedorn, Spencer County

We are fortunate to live in a country with highly effective food safety standards for producers, wholesalers and retailers. Specific government agencies are responsible for establishing food safety standards, conducting inspections and ensuring that the standards are met. But once the food is purchased and taken home, it is then the responsibility of the consumer to maintain its safety. This lesson will focus on safe food preparation and handling at home, including tips on cooking, temperatures, storage and cleaning.

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Mixes In a Jar

Provided By Area 8: Joanne Lytton, Carroll County

Gift giving can be easy and economical if you make a mix in a jar for someone. You can show someone how much you care by giving them a beautiful homemade gift jar filled with the ingredients to make a delicious recipe. You will learn some tips and safety information for making your own jar gifts as well as some creative ways to share great recipes. Plus, many of the recipes include tips for making: ““Healthy Mixes in a Jar”. You will learn to substitute ingredients to reduce carbs and sodium. Plus, complete directions are given to demonstrate 2 healthy mixes – cookie with sugar substitutes and a salad.

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Healthy Eating When Eating Out

Provided By Area 10: Karen Richey, Marshall County

In our fast-paced lifestyles, we find ourselves eating out more frequently - making it more of a challenge to eat healthy meals. Learn some strategies to help you select healthier menu choices at the variety of restaurants and cuisine styles you may visit. You will be challenged to select a healthy meal to reach your nutrition goals from the menu provided.

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Family Resource Management

How Financially Prepared Are You?

Area 5: Lori A Bouslog, Vermillion County

Who handles the finances for your household? If you are the money manager of your household, would your partner be able to manage the budget and bills without your guidance? If you don’t usually handle the finances, would you know where to begin? Although it is common for a household to have a system for managing the finances, there is the possibility that the responsibility may unexpectedly shift.

The past several months has quickly changed the financial responsibilities for many households. This lesson will help you prepare for unexpected financial responsibilities, and consider what plans should be in place when there is a change in who manages the household finances.

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Empower Me to be Clutter Free

Area 9: Amanda Nielsen, Pulaski County & Denise Schroeder, White County

Purging Your Paper Piles - Clutter is a disordered collection of things that impedes movement or reduces effectiveness. One of our largest stumbling blocks to living in a clutter free environment can be the amount of paper clutter we accumulate. This lesson will help you improve your ability to organize the paper that comes into your life and create a filing system that works for you.

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Reverse Mortgages

Provided By Area 3: Jennifer Stefancik, Daviess County & Kristina Deters, Warrick County

Learn about reverse mortgages.

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Do You Want to Have a Say?

Provided By Area 5: Lori Bouslog, Sullivan County

Estate planning is more than the process of determining the distribution of your assets upon your death. It also includes making decisions about who is going to manage your personal affairs when you are no longer able. Would you rather the courts make those decisions, or “Do You Want to Have a Say?”

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Oh No! I Think I've Just Been Scammed

Provided By Area 9: Denise Schroeder, White County; Mandy Medbourn, Pulaski/Starke; Jean Akers, Warren County

Have an issue with a product or service? Not sure whom to contact or what questions to ask? Not sure what your rights concerning financial products or services? This lesson outlines steps to take when you are dissatisfied with a product or service, explains your rights and provides contact information for a complaint.

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What Is It With These New Light Bulbs?

Provided By Area 1: Harriet Armstrong, Bartholomew County

There are many new lighting alternatives on the market. What are the different types available and how do they compare? What should one look for when purchasing? Participants will have a better understanding of what lighting options are available and be able to evaluate which ones best meet their needs for a particular environment.

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Reduce Spending for Special Occasions & Holidays

Provided By Area 6: Diana Stone, Shelby County

Throughout the year, consumers spend a significant amount of money for birthdays, Valentine’s Day, anniversaries, weddings, Easter, Halloween, Christmas, and many other special occasions. The average person spends over $1000 per year for Valentine’s Day and Christmas together. Learn a variety of ways to reduce spending with ideas for decorations, costumes, gifts, paper products, food choices, and much more. Enjoy the special occasions next year without breaking the bank!

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Responding to Color as We Age

Provided By Area 10: Linda Curley, Lake County

This program addresses the idea of choosing color to satisfy our physical, emotional, and nutritional needs as we age.It will help us to understand how color can affect us when planning our surrounding to meet our needs Learn to see how color affects what we appear to see, our emotions, and even our safety.

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Reducing the Stress in Stress Management

Area 1: Christopher Fogle, Decatur County

Stress can be a constant factor in most, if not, everyone’s daily life. As we age, stress can have a direct impact on our physical and mental health. Empower yourself in better understanding the differences between and how to manage acute and chronic stress.

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Let’s Move More!

Area 6: Christiana Owusu-Ankomah, MPH, Shelby County

Although we know the importance of physical activity in our overall health and well-being, many of us fall shy of meeting the weekly recommendations. In this lesson, we will discuss the benefits of physical activity and provide examples of simple (and safe) ways to increase your level of activity.

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Taking Time for Yourself

Area 10: Virginia Aparicio, Elkhart County

In this lesson we explore practical tools that everyone can use to prioritize their mental health and build resiliency regardless of their personal situation.

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Safe Disposal of Unneeded Medications

Provided By Area 2: Marilyn Sink, Clark County & Molly Marshall, Jackson County

Do you have medication that has expired, gone unused or is unwanted and are unsure of how to dispose of it? During this session, participants will learn how to dispose of medication immediately and properly. Practicing secure medication storage and proper disposal helps prevent accidental poisoning, prescription drug abuse or drug diversion in your home and community. Taking medication as prescribed also helps you keep track of current medications. We all have a part to play in building healthier and safer communities. Do your part by storing your medication safely, then when the time comes, properly disposing of medications.

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Let's Get Outside

Provided By Area 9: Kelsie Muller, Benton County & Amanda Galloway, Fountain County

Time spent outdoors is good for our health, so why are we not spending as much time outdoors? According to the National Wildlife Association, the amount of time spent outside for adults and children alike is alarmingly low- only minutes per day-while screen time is at an all-time high. All the while, there are many health benefits of green time and connecting with nature. Feeling sluggish? Let’s get outside.

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Health of Your Home - Lead & Radon

Provided By Area 1: Peggy Ehlers, Switzerland County

This lesson identifies sources of lead that are common in the home, describes the risks associated with lead exposure, and recommends ways to remove or reduce lead exposure.

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Alphabet Soup: Making Sense of Vitamin & Mineral Supplement

Provided By Area 7: Alicia Criswell, Wayne County

This program identifies the reasons for taking vitamin and mineral supplements, and how/when specific supplements should be used. The program will also help identify potentially dangerous levels of some supplements, while examining how certain supplements may interfere with some prescription medicines.

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Hydrating for Your Health

Provided By Area 6: Megan Addison, Hancock County

Your body is 60% water! Hydrating properly is very important in order to keep the body operating efficiently. The body depends on water to aid bodily functions including digestion, blood flow, heart activity, and the mental process. Proper hydration can improve every body function. Learn the signs of dehydration, the consequences of dehydration, and tips of staying hydrated in the lesson.

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Fall Free: A Lesson on Fall Prevention

Provided By Area 10: Jaclyn Franks, Kosciusko County

Have you fallen before? Or are you at risk? Do you know how to safely get up if you do fall? This program will discuss falls as well as how to prevent them by improving balance. This lesson included a tool to assess your risk of falling and will direct you to resources for balance exercises you can try.

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Portion Control

Provided By Area 2: Gail Peitzmeier, Crawford County

Portions of the food we eat have increased over the years resulting in larger waistlines as well. Confusion lies in what is really a serving size and how much we should really eat. Learn how to determine a true portion size and then compare to what we actually serve up on our plates.

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Sleep and Health

Provided By Area 7: Demarcus Sneed, Madison County

Sleep is one of the most important aspects of a person’s health, yet every day millions of Americans struggle to get the amount that they need. According to Healthy People 2020, 25 percent of U.S. adults are reporting insufficient sleep or rest at least 15 out of every 30 days. In this lesson, participants will learn about the different ways that sleep can impact their health as well as strategies to help meet recommendations.

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Take Time for Your Health

Provided By Area 11: Molly Hoag, Wells County

Do you often find yourself saying “I don’t have time for this?” Does your family, job, volunteer work, housework, responsibilities and hobbies make it seem impossible to live a healthy lifestyle? Is your calendar too full to work out for 60 minutes a day? Do you lack motivation and energy for exercise? At the end of the day, do you feel too tired to fix a healthy meal? No time for sickness? If you answered yes to any of these questions this lesson might be what you need to make healthy choices without a huge time commitment.

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De-Stress in the Garden

Provided By Area 11: Megan Peterson, Steuben County

Stress management with plants and herbs. Recipes, techniquesand tips included.

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Human Development

Supporting a Loved One with Cancer

Area 3: Jo Gilreath, Warrick County

The lifetime probability (for American adults) of being diagnosed with cancer is 1 in 3. As a result, most people are impacted by cancer at some time, in some way. You may be the one with a cancer diagnosis, or you may have a family member, friend, neighbor or co-worker going through a cancer journey. There are many resources locally and nationally, for the person with cancer, and for their family members and friends. Regardless of if you live near your loved one, or at a distance, you can provide support in many ways: Physical, Emotional, Spiritual, Financial, and/or Logistical.

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Tips for Preventing Dementia

Area 8: Esmeralda Cruz, Clinton County

Dementia describes a set of symptoms that may include memory loss and difficulties with thinking, problem-solving, or language. In this lesson participants will gain an understanding of risk factors, learn tips on preventing dementia, and gather ideas on how to make their homes dementia friendly.

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Reminiscence Writing

Provided By Area 7:

Creating Your Written Legacy for Yourself and the Next Generation

Did you know that, according to medical researchers, the immune system actually grows stronger when you write about true events that you discover in your memory? However, the task of writing your life story may seem overwhelming for even experienced writers. One of the measures of a life well lived must surely be the stories that flow from memories across a lifetime of both the incredible and the simple experiences each of us hold in our mind and our hearts. Be sure that the beauty and uniqueness of your own life is documented for generations to come!

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Stress & Self Care

Provided By Area 5: Courtney Stewart, Monroe County

Learn about stress and how it impacts the body and the mind. This lesson will cover stress warning signs, causes and easy to implement solutions on how to reduce or eliminate stress in your life. This lesson describes what self-care is and how to cultivate it in your life using nature, relaxation techniques and technology. A short and easy to do guided imagery exercise is included and explained.

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Planning for Unexpected Life Events

Provided By Area 8: Jane Horner, Cass County

We never truly know what tomorrow will bring but being prepared for an unexpected life event can reduce the stress if one should occur. Planning ahead gives you control and options for your situation. It can relieve stress of decision-making from family members. It saves money and helps you avoid financial disaster or setback. You now have time for gathering information, comparing options, and determining which options help achieve what is most important.

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The Value of Friendships

Provided By Area 3: Karel Kirschner, Knox County; Meagan Brothers, Vanderburgh County

Research has shown that having a close circle of friends not only enriches our lives but also is a key factor in our longevity. Our long-time friends often know us better than we know ourselves and accept us in spite of our shortcomings. They provide much needed support during the stressful times we experience. This lesson will help you learn how to reconnect and nourish friendships by engaging in fun activities as well as meaningful conversations.

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Provided By Area 8: Terri Newcom, Tipton County

This mindfulness session helps you rewind, focus, and better tackle life’s situations. Mindfulness simply means maintaining a moment-by-moment awareness of our thoughts, feelings, bodily sensations, and surrounding environment. Learn how mindfulness can help you de-stress and learn to better enjoy all aspects of life!

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Effective Team Time

Provided By Area 5: Emily Roth, Monroe County & Brooke Wilkinson, Clay & Owen Counties

Packed with strategies, tips, and activities you can quickly put into practice, this lesson shows how you can build productive teams and intentionally create an environment of engagement in your club or organization. Four main concepts that this lesson will cover include: (1) establishing guidelines and protocols, including drafting agendas and timelines; (2) managing and resolving conflicts, including giving honest feedback and building team morale; (3) improve decision-making skills, including creating win-win situations and improving flexibility and efficiency; and (4) building team capability, including evaluating and sustaining teamwork.

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As the Band Marches On

Provided By Area 9: Kathy Murray, Tippecanoe County & Alice Smith, Jasper County Are you marching to the beat of a Golden Girl/Drum Major or is aging being drummed up and pounding negatively in your ears. Do you see a sparkle in your eyes but a slow beat to your gait? Step up move on in life as a Golden Girl/Drum Major with places to go and things to do. Let’s dispel the Myths of Aging and march on to the beat of the Big Bass Drum.

Aging is not a process of decline; it is a process of marching forward, of continuing to meet life’s challenges and of growing into a complete human being. The second half of life brings many changes which brings new freedom and opportunities. If you can cope successfully with change, you will continue to grow.

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IEHA Education Focus Group Lessons

Everyday Gardening For Everyone

With a few creative adaptations anybody can garden. This booklet developed by the IEHA Education Focus Group gives handy tips and suggestions.

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Life Skills 101

All life skills are about making choices, the value of hard work, manners, honesty, how to respect and treat people, getting an education, and the desire to be successful.

This booklet can be downloaded to learn more. Use it as a personal resource, and for a lesson and discussion topic in your club.

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Affordable Fun With the Family

An IEHA Education Focus Group publication new for 2010-11, Affordable Fun With the Family's purpose is to promote togetherness for families of all economic levels. Resources are provided to help you plan activities that will include the entire family. Some suggestions may be ones that you have used and would like to try again, and hopefully some are new ideas that will encourage you to plan new activities.

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Life Made Simple

The simple life is best defined as a journey. It is a removal of the things that distract us; posessions and commitments that are no longer meaningful and household or other duties that are not necessary. The simple life is best approached slowly, starting with the little things.

Download this booklet for helpful hints and suggestions

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Leave Your Excuses at the Door

Create healthy habits for you and your family and "Leave Your Excuses at the Door".

Download this booklet for suggestions and activities.

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Preserving Your Story

Download this latest Education Focus Group booklet to get suggestions and ideas on how to collect and save your memories, records, and heirlooms.

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EveryBODY Needs to Move

Use this lessons to learn the benefits of an active lifestyle and get MOVING.

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How to Stay Safe in Today's World

By learning a few safety precautions you can be safe on the Internet. This booklet created by the IEHA Education Focus Group helps provide that valuable information.

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IEHA Leadership Focus Group Lessons


Another i-LEaD presentation from the Fall 2014 District Meetings, "Teamwork" will give you tips to help your "team" work effectively.

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Get Online With Technology

This lesson may help you understand some of today's current technology.

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Your Image Is Showing

You have an image. The organizations you belong to have images as well. You project that image verbally, nonverbally and in written communications. You cannot NOT communicate. Learn tips and techniques here.

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First Things First - How to Prioritize

Many of us complain about not having enough time for the goals we want to accomplish. Perhaps understanding the difference between priorities and goals may be the key to achieving success. This lesson presented by the i-LEaD Board at Fall 2018 District Meetings will help you start by defining priorities and goals.

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Meeting in Progress

Most people dread going to meetings. We try to find excuses to miss a meeting. This lesson, presented by i-LEaD Board members at Fall 2017 District Meetings, explores some ways to improve meetings and inspire members to attend and participate.

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Congratulations You've Been Elected

You may use this lesson to train your local officers!

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Kraft Foods

Choose the “How-To Videos” tab to see short videos on specific recipes. They can be informative about techniques, dress, use of knives, etc.

If you choose “Step by Step Recipes”, there are slide-illustrated recipes. You may not choose that recipe, but good techniques are illustrated.

Under “Charts and Guides”, there are sections on Grilling Secrets illustrated with slides and Knife Skills has a printable one page quide and a video to watch.

In addition to Knife Skills, the Kitchen Basics videos offer some other technique helps.

Better Homes and Gardens

At the Better Homes and Gardens website under Food & Recipes category, there are slide shows to help with specific techniques.

Under Cooking Techniques, there are Steaming Basics, Stir-Fry Basics, Frying Basics, etc.

There are cutting tips for all kinds of foods with step-by-step directions illustrated with close-up slides.

Southern Living

Find videos here with basic techniques demonstrated.