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.

Belmont Historical Society Cultural and Heritage Learning Center
Step back in time and learn about the history of Belmont, North Carolina through photographs, artifacts and other exhibits.
Format: article/field trip opportunity
Indian Museum of the Carolinas
This Native American museum features the Indians of the past, present day Indian groups and Indians of North America.
Format: article/field trip opportunity
Native Americans: Original natives of colonial North Carolina
In Colonial and state records of North Carolina, page 7
In this lesson, students will explore different groups of Native Americans that inhabited the lands of North Carolina prior to the arrival of the colonists. Students will also examine how colonists interacted with the Native Americans after the colonists arrived in North Carolina.
Format: lesson plan (grade 4 and 8 Social Studies)
By Lara Willox.
Teaching about North Carolina American Indians
This web edition is drawn from a teachers institute curriculum enrichment project on North Carolina American Indian Studies conducted by the North Carolina Humanities Council. Resources include best practices for teaching about American Indians, suggestions for curriculum integration, webliographies, and lesson plans about North Carolina American Indians.
Format: book (multiple pages)
"The difference is about our land": Cherokees and Catawbas
In Revolutionary North Carolina, page 4.1
During the American Revolution, American Indians living in North Carolina had to choose whether to support England or the colonists. While different groups of Indians made different decisions, most made their choices based on how they thought they could best protect their lands.
Format: article
By Jim L. Sumner.
The fate of North Carolina's native peoples
In Colonial North Carolina, page 3.8
After the Tuscarora War (1711–1713) and Yamasee War (1715–1716), only the Cherokee among North Carolina's native peoples remained intact. The Coastal Plain and Piedmont were effectively cleared for European settlement.
Format: article
By David Walbert.
The Blowing Rock in Blowing Rock, North Carolina
The Blowing Rock in Blowing Rock, North Carolina
This is the Blowing Rock in Blowing Rock, North Carolina. It is named after a Native American story in which two lovers from opposing tribes, the Catawba and the Cherokee, are walking near the rock. When a red sky signals that the brave must return to duty,...
Format: image/photograph
About the Archaeology Primer
In Excavating Occaneechi Town: An archaeology primer, page 1
The Occaneechi Indians were once prominent in the Virginia and Carolina Piedmont. As their numbers were reduced by clashes with European colonists, they retreated to a village on the Eno River. Their numbers further dwindled due to disease and warfare, and by 1730 the Occaneechi were all but gone. In 1983, archaeologists discovered a village site near Hillsborough, North Carolina. Through a series of digs, they confirmed that they had found Occaneechi Town.
Format: article
Revolutionary North Carolina
Primary sources and readings explore North Carolina in the era of the American Revolution. Topics include the Regulators, the resistance to Great Britain, the War for Indpendence, and the creation of new governments.
Format: book (multiple pages)
Dig finds evidence of Spanish fort
Near Morganton, North Carolina, archaeologists are excavating what they believe to be the remnants of Juan Pardo's outpost at the foothills of the Appalachian Mountains. The 16th-century outpost, known as Fort San Juan, disappeared after Indians burned it to the ground.
Format: article
Schiele Museum of Natural History and Planetarium
The museum provides an opportunity for visitors to learn about the natural resources of North Carolina and its Piedmont region.
Format: article/field trip opportunity
The lost landscape of the Piedmont
In Prehistory, contact, and the Lost Colony, page 5.5
The Piedmont region of North Carolina is unrecognizable compared to the landscape of 400 years ago. Where man-made lakes now sit were huge bottomland forests. While pine trees accounted for only a small percentage of Piedmont acreage, they now dominate the region's forests -- a result of clearing hardwoods to create farmland. Other once-prominent landscapes include areas of grassland known as “Piedmont prairie,” and upland depression swamps where the clay soils often kept moisture on the land’s surface.
Format: article/primary source
Colonial North Carolina
Colonial North Carolina from the establishment of the Carolina in 1663 to the eve of the American Revolution in 1763. Compares the original vision for the colony with the way it actually developed. Covers the people who settled North Carolina; the growth of institutions, trade, and slavery; the impact of colonization on American Indians; and significant events such as Culpeper's Rebellion, the Tuscarora War, and the French and Indian Wars.
Format: book (multiple pages)
Native Americans in North Carolina
In North Carolina maps, page 2.6
In this lesson, students create a PowerPoint presentation giving the history and impact of one of the six major Native American tribes of North Carolina. They will show understanding of population movement, different perspectives, and the roles the Native Americans played in the development of the state.
Format: lesson plan (grade 8 English Language Arts and Social Studies)
By Jennifer Job.
Spanish empire failed to conquer Southeast
In Prehistory, contact, and the Lost Colony, page 3.6
Juan Pardo’s expedition erected six forts in the Southeastern interior, including one at Guatari. Most of them seem to have fallen in short order. That result wasn’t surprising. The forts were isolated, lightly garrisoned in most cases, dependent on the Indians for food, and prone to trigger Indian resentment.
Format: article
Fort Dobbs and the French and Indian War in North Carolina
In Colonial North Carolina, page 8.2
During the French and Indian War (1754–1763), North Carolina settlers fought the Cherokee, sent troops to fight in the North, and built Fort Dobbs in Rowan County to defend the frontier.
Format: article
Juan Pardo, the Indians of Guatari, and first contact
In Prehistory, contact, and the Lost Colony, page 3.4
The Guatari Indians lived in an influential settlement near Trading Ford and were led by a female chief. In 1567, they encountered Spanish explorers led by Captain Juan Pardo who came through the North Carolina Piedmont with grand hopes of creating a powerful empire.
Format: article
Horizons Unlimited
This wonderful education center and museum provides hands-on programs for students in the areas of history and the physical and biological sciences.
Format: article/field trip opportunity
Language families
In Intrigue of the Past, page 4.7
Students will identify and locate the three language families of contact period North Carolina and calculate the physical area covered by each language family.
Format: lesson plan (grade 4 and 7–8 Mathematics and Social Studies)
Shadows of a people
In Prehistory, contact, and the Lost Colony, page 2.3
Archaeologists divide North Carolina's prehistory -- the time before contact with Europeans -- into four periods: Paleoindian, Archaic, Woodland, and Mississippian.
Format: article