• Imagining History

Stone Age Humans - A Quick Guide for KS2 Students

Updated: 5 hours ago

The Stone Age is the name given to the era where human beings began using stones as tools and weapons. But who were these prehistoric human beings? If they're our ancestors, are they like us today?


Here, we'll tell you all about the early species of humans, when and where they existed and what makes them unique.



Homo Habilis


Known As:

Handy Man


Existed Where:

Africa


Existed When:

2 Million – 1.5 million years ago


Who Were They?:

Homo Habilis was the first true human species to evolve from apes and the first species to have a large brain.


Fun Fact:

Homo Habilis was named for the fact that they were apparently the first species to create stone tools



Homo Erectus


Known As:

Upright Man


Existed Where:

Africa


Existed When:

2 million – 150,000 years ago


Who Were They?:

Homo Erectus had long legs which they used to walk long distances. They were the first human species to migrate and spread across the globe.


Fun Fact:

Homo Erectus were probably the first to learn to control fire and cook food.



Homo Neanderthalensis


Known As:

Neanderthal


Existed Where:

Eurasia


Existed When:

200,000 – 40,000 years ago


Who Were They?:

Neanderthals were the first extinct human species to be discovered by scientists.

They are the most commonly found extinct human species, with bones being found in Europe, Western & Central Asia.

Neanderthals made sophisticated bone and stone tools. They even self-medicated and made art.


Fun Fact:

We did not evolve from Neanderthals. But they could be described as a “cousin” of our species – we are distantly related to them.



Homo Sapiens


Known As:

Wise Man/Modern Humans


Existed Where:

Africa


Existed When:

200,000 years ago – today


Who Are They?:

Us! By about 40,000 years ago, homo sapiens were the last human species surviving on earth.


Fun Facts:

No other species seemed to be able to compete with how advanced we are technologically and artistically.



Further Reading:

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