Biology KS2 / KS3: Photosynthesis - where does the energy in our food come from?

Dr Chris van Tulleken introduces the clip. He visits a farm and digs up a potato plant.

He explains that there are approximately 150 kilocalories in each potato, stored as starch.

But this energy has come from the sun, and he describes the process of photosynthesis.

Chris explains that the calories in our food are either in fat, protein or carbohydrates.

He summarises by listing some of the foods that are high in these three nutrients and explaining their role in a balanced diet.

This clip includes images of animal carcasses in an abattoir. Teacher review recommended prior to use in class.

Teacher Notes

Key Stage 2

Before watching the clip, ask students to write down some healthy foods that give us energy.

How does this energy get into the food chain? After the clip, ask students if they knew that energy was available in proteins as well as in carbohydrates and fats.

Key Stage 3

Before the clip, hand round some crisps and ask students to write a food chain which ends in ‘human’.

The correct answer is potato human. Can they do this for other healthy foods?

Ask students to explain where the energy comes from that is stored in the foods that they eat.

After the clip, ask students to name the three main nutrients that provide the energy in our diets.

Curriculum Notes

This clip will be relevant for teaching Biology/Science at KS2 and KS3 in England Wales and Northern Ireland. Also at 2nd and 3rd Level in Scotland.

More from Biology with Dr. Chris van Tulleken:

What is a calorie?
What a human stomach looks like
Journey through the digestive system