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Showing 1-20 of 26 Resources
  • New Laetoli Footprints and Hominin Body Size

    New Laetoli Footprints and Hominin Body Size

    Data Points

    Scientists were excavating a site in Laetoli, Tanzania when they uncovered two new sets of hominin tracks located about 150 meters south of the tracks found by Mary Leakey in the 1970’s. They estimated the heights of the two individuals using the size and shape of the footprints.

  • Dating Corn Domestication Using Carbon Isotopes

    Dating Corn Domestication Using Carbon Isotopes

    Data Points

    To study the change in diet as human populations changed lifestyles from hunter-gatherers to agriculturalists, scientists measured carbon isotopes in the collagen tissues of human skeletons from North America.

  • Animated Life: Mary Leakey

    Animated Life: Mary Leakey

    Animated Shorts

    (7 min 52 sec) This animated short film recounts the life and work of paleoanthropologist Mary Leakey, including her discovery of the Laetoli footprints.

  • Animated Life

    Animated Life

    Collection

    These five short films, produced in conjunction with The New York Times, bring to life five historical scientific discoveries and the people behind them: Alfred Russel Wallace and his contribution to...

  • Origin of Birds With Quiz

    Origin of Birds With Quiz

    Interactive Videos

    (18 min 59 sec) Embedded quiz modules test students’ understanding as they watch a short film about the evidence that showed birds descended from dinosaurs.

  • Comparative Anatomy of the Domestic Chicken

    Comparative Anatomy of the Domestic Chicken

    Click & Learn

    Trace the evolutionary history of birds by comparing the shapes and structures of certain bones in a chicken to those of some of its extinct and living relatives. Also available in Spanish.

  • The Origin of Flight: What Use Is Half a Wing?

    The Origin of Flight: What Use Is Half a Wing?

    Scientists at Work

    (8 min 16 sec) Biologist Ken Dial's study of how young birds use their developing wings sheds light on the evolution of flight in birds.

  • Film Guide for Popped Secret: The Mysterious Origin of Corn

    Film Guide for Popped Secret: The Mysterious Origin of Corn

    Film Guides

    The following classroom-ready resources complement the film Popped Secret: The Mysterious Origin of Corn, which tells the story of how geneticists and archaeologists have come together to determine how and where corn was domesticated nearly 9,000 years ago. Also available in Spanish.

  • Mass Extinction: Life at the Brink

    Mass Extinction: Life at the Brink

    Feature Films

    Five times in Earth’s past, the vast majority of plant and animal species have been annihilated in a geologic instant. What triggered these dramatic events, and what might they tell us about the fate of our world?

  • Human Feet Are Strange

    Human Feet Are Strange

    Activities

    In this hands-on activity students examine the evidence for the evolution of human bipedality as revealed by a trail of fossil footprints. Also available in Spanish.

  • Living Dinosaurs: Fact or Fiction?

    Living Dinosaurs: Fact or Fiction?

    Activities

    Students evaluate and discuss statements about the evolutionary relationship between birds and dinosaurs and other facts about these groups, before and after watching the short film Great Transitions: The Origin of Birds. Also available in Spanish.

  • The Origin of Birds Film Guide

    The Origin of Birds Film Guide

    Film Guides

    The following classroom-ready resources complement Great Transitions: The Origin of Birds. Featuring vertebrate paleontologist Dr. Julia Clarke, the film walks us through the evidence that birds are a lineage of theropod dinosaurs. 

  • Episode 1: Your Inner Fish

    Episode 1: Your Inner Fish

    Feature Films

    (54 min 41 sec) See how the genetic legacy of a fish can be seen today in our own DNA. PLEASE N​OTE: Due to international distribution restrictions, these programs can only be streamed in the United States and Canada.

  • Mesozoic Film with Quiz

    Mesozoic Film with Quiz

    Interactive Videos

    (33 min 43 sec) Embedded quiz modules test students’ understanding as they watch the short film on the asteroid that caused the extinction of the dinosaurs.

  • Great Transitions: The Origin of Birds

    Great Transitions: The Origin of Birds

    Short Films

    (18 min 59 sec) In the second film of the Great Transitions trilogy, paleontologist Julia Clarke takes us on a journey to uncover the evidence that birds descended from dinosaurs. Also available in Spanish.

  • Anthony Barnosky and Kaitlin Maguire Measure Mammal Extinctions at the John Day Fossil Beds

    Anthony Barnosky and Kaitlin Maguire Measure Mammal Extinctions at the John Day Fossil Beds

    Scientists at Work

    (9 min 15 sec) Prehistoric extinction rates are calculated from fossil data in a paleodatabase and compared to today’s extinction rate.

  • Great Transitions: The Origin of Tetrapods

    Great Transitions: The Origin of Tetrapods

    Short Films

    (17 min 11 sec) One of the most exciting discoveries in the long history of fossil exploration is Tiktaalik, a creature with a mix of features common to fish and four-legged animals, or tetrapods.

  • Stickleback Evolution Virtual Lab

    Stickleback Evolution Virtual Lab

    Virtual Labs

    This virtual lab teaches skills of data collection and analysis to study evolutionary processes using stickleback fish and fossil specimens.

  • The Day the Mesozoic Died

    The Day the Mesozoic Died

    Short Films

    (33 min 43 sec) The disappearance of the dinosaurs at the end of the Cretaceous period posed one of the greatest, long-standing scientific mysteries. This three-act film tells the story of the extraordinary detective work that solved it. Also available in Spanish.

  • How To Find a Dinosaur

    How To Find a Dinosaur

    Scientists at Work

    (4 min 5 sec) Dr. Lyson describes dinosaur digs as well as his focus on prehistoric turtle fossils.

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