KEY. Chapter 2: The Stone Age and Early Cultures Section 1: The First People

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1 KEY Chapter 2: The Stone Age and Early Cultures Section 1: The First People Big Idea Prehistoric people learned to adapt to their environment, to make simple tools, to use fire, and to use language. Scientists Study Remains 1) Prehistory: the time before there was writing 2) Hominid: early ancestor of humans 3) Ancestor: a relative who lived in the past It is estimated that humans have lived on the earth for more than one million years. Writing was invented about 5,000 years ago. To study the time before writing (also known as prehistory,) historians rely on the work of archaeologists and anthropologists. Archaeologist Mary Leakey found bones in East Africa that were more than 1.5 million years old in The bones belonged to one of the earliest humans, known as Australopithecus. An artist s rendition of Australopithecus one of the earliest ancestors of humans.

2 In 1974, anthropologist Donald Johanson discovered bones that were more than 3 million years old. Johanson named his discovery Lucy, and knew that she had walked on two legs, which is a key step in human development. Donald Johanson is an American anthropologist who discovered the remains of Lucy. Lucy is believed to be one of the earliest ancestors of humans. Another anthropologist, Tim White, discovered remains of a hominid that he believes are 4.4 million years old, but some scientists disagree with that estimate.

3 Hominids and Early Humans Homo habilis handy man. More closely related to humans than Lucy, with a larger brain. Around 3 million years ago. Homo erectus upright man. They are believed to have walked completely upright like modern humans do. They are believed to have been able to control fire. Around 1.5 million years ago. Homo sapiens wise man. These are modern humans. Many scientists estimate that they first appeared in Africa around 200,000 years ago. Stone Age Tools 1) Tool: any handheld object that has been modified to help a person accomplish a task. 2) Paleolithic Era: the first part of the of the Stone Age, also called the Old Stone Age. The first humans and their ancestors lived during a long period of time called the Stone Age. The First Tools Scientists discovered the oldest tools in the African country of Tanzania. They are sharpened stones, about the size of an adult fist. One side was sharpened by striking it with another stone, and the other side was left unsharpened to use as a handle. The first tools were mostly used to process food.

4 Later Tools Over time, humans learned to create better tools. They developed a hand ax by using a mineral called flint as the blade. People also learned how to attach wooden handles to their tools. People could also hunt larger animals when they invented the spear, which could be thrown. Hunter-Gatherer Societies 1) Society: a community of people who share a common culture. 2) Hunter- Gatherers: people who hunt animals and gather wild plants, seeds, fruits, and nuts to survive. Society Anthropologists believe that early humans lived in small groups. They would find shelter in caves, and if food became hard to find, they would move to new areas. It is believed that the men were the hunters. They hunted in groups and sometimes chased animals off of cliffs. It is believed that the women stayed near the camps and gathered plants to eat. They also took care of the children. Language, Art, and Religion The most important development of early Stone Age culture was the development of language. Different theories exist for why language developed: To make hunting in groups easier. To allow people to form relationships with each other. It made it easier for people to resolve issues like how to distribute food.

5 Early people also expressed themselves in other ways: They created art. They carved figures out of stone, ivory, and bone. They painted and carved images of people and animals on cave walls. Some evidence suggests that Stone Age people developed religion. Archaeologists have found graves hat included food and artifacts.

The First People. The Big Idea Prehistoric people learned to adapt to their environment, to make simple tools, to use fire, and to use language.

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