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.

“ottos mops” by Ernst Jandl
This lesson is designed for students to enjoy a short amusing poem, as well as refine their knowledge of short “o” and long “o” sounds, and use higher order thinking skills to analyze who or what otto and mops are.
Format: lesson plan (grade 9–12 Second Languages)
By Helga Fasciano.
What's happening now?
This comprehension and writing lesson helps the student develop skills in predicting what will happen next and sequencing. It also develops the ability to answer what, where, when, and how questions. It can also include a writing activity that teaches writing in a newspaper format by answering the "W" questions and creating a class newspaper book.
Format: lesson plan (grade 1 English Language Arts)
By Nancy McGowan.
Fishing for beginning sounds
This lesson introduces the beginning sounds for picture words.
Format: lesson plan (grade K English Language Arts)
By Deborah Kirby.
To market, to market: Photograph analysis
In this lesson, students analyze photos of markets from around the world to gain an understanding of the similarities and differences between geographically distant places, to learn about the economic and cultural significance of markets, and to improve visual literacy skills.
Format: lesson plan (grade 6–7 English Language Arts and Social Studies)
By Eric Eaton.
Moravian migration: Before a visit to Bethabara
Students investigate NCECHO site to learn about the 1753 Moravian settlement of Bethabara. Student teams present information to classmates in some visual product in one of five categories. Students also will visit the photos on NCECHO and answer analytical questions to increase understanding of the past as compared to today.
Format: lesson plan (grade 2–4 English Language Arts and Social Studies)
Whose habitat is that?
This lesson is designed to help students explore the surroundings animals find in a variety of habitats. This plan is written for the desert habitat but the same plan should be used for the exploration of a variety of habitat settings.
Format: lesson plan (grade 1 English Language Arts and Information Skills)
By Kelly Stewart.
Image Analysis of the Bijou Theatre in the early 1900s
In this lesson, students will use postcards and photographs from the Going to the Show digital collection that highlight the moviegoing experience in the early 1900s to expand their critical thinking and visual literacy skills, gain experience analyzing comparable visual images of the same subject, and consider motivations for different visual image constructs.
Format: lesson plan (grade 8 Social Studies)
By Lisa Speaker.
Bullfighting in Colombia
In this lesson for grade six, students study the history of bullfighting in Spain and Colombia as an example of how cultural traditions can be transferred from one place to another. Students analyze photographs of bullfighting in Colombia and discuss the cultural tradition of the sport and the controversy surrounding it.
Format: lesson plan (grade 6–7 Social Studies)
By Eric Eaton.
Majestic peaks: Mountains of North Carolina and Ecuador
In this lesson, students analyze two photographs: one of the mountains of Ecuador and one of the mountains of Western North Carolina. Students then analyze the two photographs together to gain an understanding of the two regions' similarities and differences.
Format: lesson plan (grade 6–8 English Language Arts and Social Studies)
By Eric Eaton.
North Carolina regions
Working in cooperative groups, the students will learn about their assigned regions of North Carolina. A list of questions will be generated. When the research is completed, the students will design a way to orally present the information to the class. This also will integrate Visual Arts and Informational Skills.
Format: lesson plan (grade 3–4 Information Skills and Social Studies)
By Patricia Britt.
Topographic maps
In Map skills and higher-order thinking, page 11
Topographic maps add a third dimension to latitude and longitude by showing natural (and cultural) features of the earth's surface -- in particular, elevation. Historically, mapmakers used a variety of methods to indicate elevation. To get a quick...
Format: activity/lesson plan
By David Walbert.
"Kids as Decision Makers" -- Distinguishing between Needs and Wants
The students will have hands-on experiences with sorting pictures into groups according to the social studies objective: The learner will apply basic economic concepts to home and school. This lesson will focus on distinguishing between wants and needs.
Format: lesson plan (grade K–1 Social Studies)
By Tonya Kales.
“J'adore la pizza” by Karen Kransky: Finding rhyming words in a French poem
This lesson is designed to increase students' awareness of some French letter-sound combinations that rhyme, in spite of being spelled differently using the poem, "J'adore la pizza" by Karen Kransky.
Format: lesson plan (grade 3–5 Second Languages)
By Laura Hemphill.
North Carolina living through photos, then and now
Students will examine historical photographs of North Carolinians at work or in social settings. They will develop and share skills of “reading” photographs. Then they will use these skills to identify “historical clues” in a photo and draw their own version of the same person or people in North Carolina today.
Format: lesson plan (grade 3–4 Social Studies)
By Michael Sharp.
Is no man an island?
This unit is designed to encourage thinking about our connectedness to and responsibilities toward others. Materials in this unit are used to demonstrate humankind's need to refute an impersonal natural order.
Format: lesson plan (grade 9–10 English Language Arts)
By Jewell Kendrick.
Of earth, water, and fire: World pottery traditions
In this lesson, a photo analysis activity helps students learn about pottery traditions from around the world. Students discuss how these traditions are similar to and different from one another.
Format: lesson plan (grade 6–8 Visual Arts Education and Social Studies)
By Eric Eaton.
A magic carpet ride: Exploring carpet weaving in India
In this lesson, a photo analysis activity helps students learn about carpet weaving in India. Students discuss how this tradition compares to the weaving traditions of other cultures.
Format: lesson plan (grade 7 Visual Arts Education and Social Studies)
By Eric Eaton.
The power of a portrait
The students will use the portrait Mending Socks by Archibald Motley to explore how objects can be used to tell about a person's attributes and life.
Format: lesson plan (grade K–1 Guidance and Social Studies)
By Evika Sturdivant.
Picturing Vietnam
This lesson plan is intended to introduce students to Vietnam’s geography, climate, culture, history, natural history, arts, economics, and government. Students will view a collection of documentary photographs and use these for making logical observations, drawing conclusions, and as a basis for creative writing.
Format: lesson plan (grade 7 English Language Arts, Information Skills, and Social Studies)
By Edie McDowell.
Supermarket sweep: Day 1
Students will talk about choices that families make when purchasing groceries. Students will make a booklet of frequently purchased grocery items.
Format: lesson plan (grade K–1 English Language Arts, English Language Development, and Social Studies)
By Angela Hunt and Melody Holmes.