Shape of Life is a series of FREE short classroom videos that beautifully illustrate the evolution of the animal kingdom on planet earth. Based upon an original PBS Series, Shape of Life is especially designed for students and teachers who want a first-hand account of how animals adapt and thrive. The series is NGSS aligned with exquisite focus on diversity, biodiversity, adaptability, body structure, design, behaviors, and the innovative scientists who explore these creatures.


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Join us on an amazing tour of how animal life evolved on planet earth

These short videos show students of all ages the dramatic rise of the animal kingdom and the astonishing diversity we see on earth today:

  • Stunning animations explain the intricate inner workings of animals’ bodies, demonstrating the complementary relationship of form and function.
  • Up-close films show animal behaviors while hunting and feeding in their natural habitats.
  • Scientists, shown at work, study paleontology, genetics and ecology, pursuing their passion for the animals they study.
  • From sponges, to worms, to humans, each phylum is presented in exquisite detail of its body plan and the evolutionary developments that lead to today’s astonishing diversity.
  • Other topics present exciting new developments in genetics, paleontology, and engineering.

All these videos align with the Next Generation Science Standards for Middle School and California 7th grade science standards.

News from Shape of Life

Featured Creature: Earthworms

photo of earthworms
We’ve all seen earthworms and think we know all about them. But do we? We think they’re good for our gardens, and that’s true. They aerate the soil and provide nutrients. But what’s good for the garden isn’t good for most forests in North America. That’s because earthworms are an invasive species. When the ice sheets moved across the continent more than 10,000 years ago, they wiped out native earthworms. Today, most earthworms north of Pennsylvania are non-native. They arrived with the European explorers.