The epic voyages of Darwin and Wallace led each to independently discover the natural origin of species and to formulate the theory of evolution by natural selection.
Four decades of research on finch species that live only on the Galápagos Islands illuminate how species form and multiply.
In the Caribbean islands, adaptation to several common habitats has led to a large adaptive radiation with interesting examples of convergent evolution.
The richness and diversity of life raises two of the most profound questions in biology: How do new species form? And, why are there so many species?
Finches discriminate between members of their own species and those of a closely related species based on song and appearance.
The following classroom-ready resources complement The Origin of Species: The Beak of the Finch. By following four decades of research on the finches of the Galápagos islands, the film illustrates how geography and ecology can drive the evolution of new species.
The following classroom-ready resources complement The Origin of Species: Lizards in an Evolutionary Tree. Research on the anole lizards is enriching our understanding of evolutionary processes, such as adaptation by natural selection, convergent evolution, and the formation of new...
The following classroom-ready resources complement The Origin of Species: The Making of a Theory, which tells the story of the epic adventures of Charles Darwin and Alfred Russel Wallace and of the evidence they gathered for the theory of evolution by means of natural selection.
These two activities support the film The Origin of Species: The Beak of the Finch. They provide students with the opportunity to analyze data collected by Princeton University evolutionary biologists Peter and Rosemary Grant.
This animation features the anole lizards as an example of how a single species can split and multiply into many different species with distinct traits.
This activity supports the film The Origin of Species: Lizards in an Evolutionary Tree. Students are guided to sort the lizard species by appearance, then generate a phylogenetic tree using the lizards’ DNA sequences to evaluate whether species that appear similar are closely related...
This classroom experiment supports the film The Origin of Species: The Beak of the Finch. Students collect and analyze data to learn why even slight variations in beak size can make the difference between life and death.
This activity supports the viewing of the film The Origin of Species: The Making of a Theory. Before and after watching the film, students discuss and evaluate several statements about Charles Darwin, Alfred Russel Wallace, and the specific evidence that led each of them to the theory...
This activity supports the HHMI short film The Origin of Species: The Making of a Theory. Students are presented with a map of the Malay Archipelago and some field notebooks with observations of animals. By plotting which animals are found on which island, the students discover the...
The bill of the buff-tailed sicklebill hummingbird is perfectly shaped to collect nectar from deep within the Centropogon flower.
This activity serves as a supplement to the HHMI short film The Origin of Species: The Making of a Theory. Students read and analyze excerpts from texts written by Charles Darwin and Alfred Russel Wallace and answer questions about the information presented, developing their nonfiction...
This animated short video illustrates the life of Alfred Russel Wallace, who independently formulated the theory of evolution by natural selection at the same time as Charles Darwin.