The Best Streaming Videos on Human Evolution

Human evolution is a crucial part of any curriculum, as it’s a cornerstone of modern biology. Plus, in my humble opinion, it’s totally fascinating. I’m particularly enamored with the BBC’s “Walking with Cavemen” production, which just might be my favorite educational video on Netflix. Creationists will surely disagree. Everyone else: enjoy!

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    Walking With Cavemen

    This documentary series lets viewers follow humankind’s family tree to its very beginning and take the first step alongside our earliest ancestors.

    Length: Two 49-minute episodes

    Rating: TV-PG

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    NOVA: Becoming Human

    Where did we come from? What makes us human? An explosion of recent discoveries sheds light on these questions, and NOVA’s comprehensive, three-part special, “Becoming Human,” examines what the latest scientific research reveals about our hominid relatives—putting together the pieces of our human past and transforming our understanding of our earliest ancestors.

    Length: Three 54-minute episodes

    Rating: TV-PG

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    Bones of Turkana

    Follow famed paleoanthropologist Richard Leakey, his family, and his colleagues as they work in the arid northern regions of Kenya’s Turkana Basin to unravel the mysteries of human evolution. While one of the Leakey team’s goals is to demonstrate the complexity and truth of human evolution, they also seek to show how the qualities that we proudly call human were all born in Africa.

    Length: 56 minutes

    Rating: NR

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    What Makes Us Human?

    Find out if you’re part Neanderthal, about the evolution of laughter, what language may owe to tool making, and more.

    Length: 53 minutes

    Rating: TV-PG

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    The Human Family Tree

    In this National Geographic documentary, scientists uncover fascinating truths about the commonalities of man as human history is charted from its roots in Africa to its evolution over time.

    Length: 46 minutes

    Rating: TV-PG

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    Where Did We Come From?

    Explore the origin of our solar system and the start of life itself, how head lice figure in human evolution, and more.

    Length: 52 minutes

    Rating: NR