Educator Resources

Scientists excavating a site in Kostenki, Russia, have unearthed a set of unique artifacts that date back about 45,000 years. These artifacts represent the earliest trace of modern humans in that region. They are important because they help to clarify when and over what route modern humans migrated to Eastern Europe.

Assign a small group of students to do further research on the links below and present a brief report to the class.

Science: Anthropology—The Missing Years for Modern Humans
http://www.sciencemag.org/cgi/content/full/sci;315/5809/194

The Kostenki-Borshevo Region on the Don River
http://donsmaps.com/lioncamp.html

The report should answer these questions:

  • What kinds of artifacts were unearthed at the site?
  • How do scientists know that the artifacts are ~45,000 years old?
  • How does the find support the idea that different people first migrated to Europe along different routes?
  • How does the find support the idea that the people that once lived at this site migrated from Asia?

After the presentation, allow the group time to answer any questions the class has.