Human Origins

Human Origins


Use the resources on the Comparing Species through the Fossil Record esheet to answer the questions on this sheet. <http://www.sciencenetlinks.com/esheets/comparing-species-through-the-fossil-record/>

Human Evolution: You Try It
Look at A. ramidus, the most primitive of hominids found. Compare and contrast humans today to A. ramidus.

Follow the “tree” over to Lucy and then to Homo habilis “handy man.” What physical changes do you note between the two?

How do you think the use of tools by “handy man” possibly changed the lives of Homo habilis?

Do you think those tools led to what we have today?

Now follow the “tree” up to Homo erectus and then over to Homo sapiens. What changes in traits do you notice?

Finally, look at Homo sapiens. Generally, how do we differ from the various species that came before us? (Think about external physical traits, bone structure, language, and culture.)

What similarities do you think there are between humans and the species that came before?

Do you think there are more differences or similarities?

Can you think of other species today that have evolved from earlier species, but are quite different from those earlier species?


Outpost: In Search of Human Origins
What physical feature first separated hominids from apes?

What are some advantages of bipedalism?

What did the curved fingers of the very first hominids most likely represent?

How did the upper limbs of hominids change over time? What do these changes indicate?

How did hominid tooth enamel change over time? What does that change imply in regard to behavior?

How did hominid canine tooth size change over time? What may this represent?

Describe the usefulness of looking at fossil records.

Describe some limitations of using fossils to piece together our past.

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