Energy Loss Simulation for Students

Heading off for the week-end, but wanted to share a fun game for students I recently discovered on the website of Nelson Thornes, educational publisher from the U.K.

This Flash simulation teaches students “how we lose energy to the environment” and “what is the effect of maintaining a constant body temperature”.

Go ahead and try it: You have to choose whether you are a herbivore or a carnivore, whether you are cold-blooded or hot-blooded, and your activity level.
Here is the image that was created for me (couldn’t choose mixed diet though, so opted for meat).

When you’re done, just click on the button labeled “Sankey” and you will get a Sankey diagram that shows how the energy from your food is used for movement, growth, body off-heat and …. well, see for yourself!

A great idea, and a good idea to teach students about energy transformation and loss, and to get them acquainted to Sankey diagrams as alternative to pie charts.

(Images reproduced with permission of Nelson Thornes from