K-12 Teaching and Learning From the UNC School of Education

Important Announcement about Online Courses and LEARN NC.

Important Message about LEARN NC

LEARN NC is evaluating its role in the current online education environment as it relates directly to the mission of UNC-Chapel Hill School of Education (UNC-CH SOE). We plan to look at our ability to facilitate the transmission of the best research coming out of UNC-CH SOE and other campus partners to support classroom teachers across North Carolina. We will begin by evaluating our existing faculty and student involvement with various NC public schools to determine what might be useful to share with you.

Don’t worry! The lesson plans, articles, and textbooks you use and love aren’t going away. They are simply being moved into the new LEARN NC Digital Archive. While we are moving away from a focus on publishing, we know it’s important that educators have access to these kinds of resources. These resources will be preserved on our website for the foreseeable future. That said, we’re directing our resources into our newest efforts, so we won’t be adding to the archive or updating its contents. This means that as the North Carolina Standard Course of Study changes in the future, we won’t be re-aligning resources. Our full-text and tag searches should make it possible for you to find exactly what you need, regardless of standards alignment.

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Related pages

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  • Animal report: After studying the various animal groups, students write a report about an animal of their choosing using well-formed paragraphs.
  • Animal adaptation: This lesson focuses on the adaptations, body structures, and behavior of animals. The students will explore animal growth and adaptations of animals. This lesson is designed to be taught during the reading of Stone Fox.

Related topics


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Learning outcomes

Students will be able to apply what they have learned in their study of animals to one particular animal through research of that animal. They will then put this information into a slide show on a computer. The computer skills used include drawing tools, formatting with font, size, and text color, inserting headers, and arranging text and backgrounds.

Teacher planning

Time required for lesson

1 month


  • science textbook
  • encyclopedia
  • books on animals

Technology resources

  • computer
  • printer
  • slide show capability (ClarisWorks or PowerPoint program, for example)
  • internet access if desired


Students will need to have studied:

  • Science:
    • classification of animals
    • basic needs of animals
    • animal adaptations of body parts that help meet basic needs
    • animal behaviors adapted to meet basic needs
  • Computer Skills:
    • basic computer skills including drawing, word processing, and formatting
    • slide show presentations


The students will research the animal assigned to them. Each of the following pages of their slide show will be prepared and corrected ahead of time. Computer class time will be spent on actually creating the student’s individual slide show.

Slide Show

Each slide show will consist of 4–5 pages.

  • Page 1: A title page which includes the name of the animal and the author along with a drawing of the animal in its natural environment.
  • Page 2: A scientific classification of each animal using kingdom, phylum, class, order, family, genus, species
  • Page 3: A graphic organizer (webbing works well) summarizing the five basic needs of each animal—food, water, oxygen, climate, shelter.
  • Page 4: A chart of the animal’s behaviors which include those that are learned and those that they are born with (instincts).
  • Page 5: An extra credit page which would include interesting facts the student has found about the animal.

Conclusion of Project

Sit back and enjoy a special time (slide show afternoon!) viewing all of the students’ slide shows while enjoying popcorn or other refreshments!


Students will be assessed on the content of the slide show through a rubric which evaluates the scientific information included, grammar, spelling, and punctuation, and extra credit included. Computer skills will be assessed as part of the success of the entire slide show.

Supplemental information


  • How to prepare a slide show: doc | rtf
  • Assessment: doc | rtf


It was amazing to see the children’s computer skills develop as part of this lesson. Integrating science and computers was an exciting experience! A trip to the North Carolina Zoo was a great introduction to this lesson. It can be adapted to just about anything you want to include. The children can work at whatever level they have progressed to in computer. The first time this lesson was attempted it was successful. Not perfect, but very satisfying to all involved. Our computer teacher was a great help. We didn’t use the internet, which allowed the children to use their own drawing ability. However, the internet can be used to insert pictures, research information, etc.

North Carolina curriculum alignment

Computer Technology Skills (2005)

Grade 4

  • Goal 2: The learner will demonstrate knowledge and skills in the use of computer and other technologies.
    • Objective 2.10: Storyboard and modify multimedia projects with menus, branching and/or multiple outcomes for content areas, citing sources as a group activity. Strand - Multimedia/Presentation

Science (2005)

Grade 4

  • Goal 1: The learner will make observations and conduct investigations to build an understanding of animal behavior and adaptation.
    • Objective 1.01: Observe and describe how all living and nonliving things affect the life of a particular animal including:
      • Other animals.
      • Plants.
      • Weather.
      • Climate.
    • Objective 1.03: Observe and discuss how behaviors and body structures help animals survive in a particular habitat.