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

LEARN NC was a program of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill School of Education from 1997 – 2013. It provided lesson plans, professional development, and innovative web resources to support teachers, build community, and improve K-12 education in North Carolina. Learn NC is no longer supported by the School of Education – this is a historical archive of their website.

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  • Power sharing and the Lord Proprietors of North Carolina: This lesson examines the essential question: How did government instability under the Lord Proprietors effect the development of North Carolina? The lesson has been modified for novice low English language learners.
  • Stories from the Holocaust: This lesson is designed to supplement a study of World War II. Students will read first hand accounts of individuals who escaped Nazi persecution and eventually settled in Asheville, North Carolina. This lesson may be used as an 8th grade Social Studies or English project(It could also be used as an integrated project), 10th grade English, or 11th grade US History. This lesson uses the NCEcho portal to access the material.
  • The North Carolina mountains in the early 1900s through the writing and photography of Horace Kephart: Students will develop an understanding of daily life and culture in the mountains of North Carolina during the early 20th century through photographs and written sources; practice visual literacy skills and gain experience analyzing visual and written sources of historical information; and learn to revise their early analyses of historical sources and to synthesize the information found in different kinds of primary documents by planning a museum exhibit.

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The following resources and lesson plans have been provided by the University of North Carolina Libraries. To learn more about this topic, read the Race in Charlotte Schools story from UNC Libraries.

Lesson plans

School desegregation pioneers by Dayna Durbin Gleaves
Grades 8–10 Social Studies
In this lesson, students will learn about the challenges faced by the first students to desegregate Southern schools. Students will hear oral histories telling the story of desegregation pioneers from Alabama and North Carolina and critically analyze images of school desegregation. They will synthesize the information by writing a narrative from the point of view of a black student desegregating a white school.
A record of school desegregation: Conduct your own oral history project by Dayna Durbin Gleaves
Grade 8 Social Studies
In this unit, students will research the history of school desegregation and will use their knowledge to conduct oral history interviews with community members. Students will reflect on the experience through writing.
Desegregating public schools: Integrated vs. neighborhood schools by Dayna Durbin Gleaves
Grades 10-12 English Language Arts and Social Studies
In this lesson, students will learn about the history of the “separate but equal” U.S. school system and the 1971 Swann case which forced Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools to integrate. Students will examine the pros and cons of integration achieved through busing, and will write an argumentative essay drawing on information from oral histories.
De facto vs. de jure segregation by Dayna Durbin Gleaves
Grades 10-12 Social Studies
This lesson will help students understand the difference between de facto and de jure segregation. Students will listen to three oral history excerpts and discuss the experiences of segregation described in each. As a follow-up activity, students will brainstorm solutions to both de facto and de jure segregation.