2 The Stone Age: From Hunting and Gathering to Farming The first use of stone to create tools began what we now call the Stone Age.Name = people mainly used stone to make tools and weaponsTools gradually became more complexStones were used as hammers.They chipped sharp flakes from soft volcanic rock and used the points they made to cut plants or meat.The Stone Age continued until people learned to use metal for tools and weapons.
4 The Stone Age: From Hunting and Gathering to Farming Archaeologists divide the Stone Age into three periods.Old Stone AgePeople did not know how to farm. They hunted and gathered. They used stone to make hunting weapons and tools to cut meat, scrape animal hides, cut skins to making clothing, etc. Eventually they learned to hunt in groups. Most human prehistory took place in this age.Middle Stone AgeNew Stone Age
5 Fire Fire was discovered between 500,000 and 1,400,000 years ago. This was another important development in human prehistory.No one knows for sure how it happened.A great advance came when humans discovered how to make fire when they wanted it.Rubbing 2 sticks together or striking stonesWith the ability to make fire as they needed it, people could move to areas that had cold climates.
7 Settling New AreasAs people developed the use of tools, they left their original homes in Africa. (about 1 million years ago)Many Old Stone Age people became nomads.They moved around to places where they were sure they would find food and stayed at a campsite for several days.When they had gathered all the food around, they would move on.
8 Settling New AreasHumans eventually spread out over much of the Earth.Evidence that people were living in Asia and Europe at least 500,000 years ago30,000 years ago Asia to North America
9 The Beginning of Farming 11,000 years ago, people in Southwest Asia learned if they planted seeds of wild grasses, new crops of grass would come up.New Stone Age began because people began to grow their own food.No longer nomadsThe Old and Middle Stone Ages continued for many thousands of years in other areas of the world.
10 The Beginning of Farming Since in most societies women were responsible for gathering plants and seeds, they may have first had the idea of planting seeds.Men usually were the hunters.Women began planting and harvesting their crops in the same place year after year.
11 Farming in Other Places Some places were better for farming than others.Fertile soil, areas with long springs and summers, gentle rainAbout 7,000 years ago, Chinese farmers began planting rice and other crops.A little later in Central America, people began to grow corn, beans, and squash.
12 Farming in Other Places When people first began to plant seeds, they carefully chose the biggest, best-tasting plants.They selected those seeds to plant.Gradually, this careful collection of the biggest and best seeds and roots from each crop led to the kind of food that we eat today.
14 Taming AnimalsHumans learned how to domesticate (tame) animals during the New Stone Age.The first domesticated animals may have been dogs because they were valuable in hunting.By taming sheep, cows, and pigs, people developed a ready source of meat, milk, wool, and skins.Through careful breeding, the herders developed animals that were gentler than their wild ancestors and gave more milk or wool.By about 3,000 B.C., cattle, camels, horses, and donkeys were trained to carry heavy loads.