History Museum invites Burnham student to carry out research
Burnham-On-Sea student is carrying out research at the Natural
History Museum in London as part of a study on human ancestors.
Chedzey of Year 13 at Highbridge's King Alfred School was invited
into the research laboratories of the Natural History Museum in
Kensington as part of her work towards completing an Extended
is studying the origins of hominin bipedalism - upright walking
in our human ancestors - so she was thrilled to have the opportunity
of analysing some of the priceless fossil specimens held in the
vaults of the Palaeontology Department.
particular highlight for Katie was the analysis of the famous
'Lucy' skeleton that dates to 3.2 million-years-ago and belongs
to the species Australopithecus afarensis," said a school
was able to determine that 'Lucy' was able to walk fully upright
due to the human-like pelvis and femur, even though she retained
many ape-like features such as a small, chimpanzee-size brain
and longer arms."
was then able to compare the rather diminutive Lucy,
standing at 1.1m high, with the 1.7 million-year-old Homo erectus
skeleton belonging to the so-
called Nariokotome Boy who already stood at 1.6m tall
when he died at the age of 11 years."
with these fossils allowed Katie to conclude that human bipedalism
goes back millions of years but only in the last two million years
do we see the evolution of endurance running and more human-like
Katie at work the Natural History Museum in London (photos submitted)