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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An introduction to slave narratives: Harriet Jacobs' Life of a Slave Girl
In this lesson, students will learn about the life experiences of slaves in the United States during the 1800s by reading the story of a North Carolina slave woman who eventually escaped.
Format: lesson plan (grade 8 Social Studies)
By Joe Hooten.
Slave narratives: A genre study
In this lesson, students will read selected excerpts from slave narratives, determining common characteristics of the genre. Students will then write their own slave narratives as a slave from their region of North Carolina, researching for historical accuracy and incorporating elements of the slave narrative genre to demonstrate understanding.
Format: lesson plan (grade 9 English Language Arts and Social Studies)
By Dayna Durbin Gleaves.
Slavery and Childhood
This lesson is designed to extend student understanding of the experiences of slaves living in the American, antebellum south. The chosen samples and excerpts from the Documenting the American South collection reflect the childhood of two enslaved people born in America, Harriet Jacobs and Frederick Douglas, and two people born in Africa, Oloudah Equiano and Omar Bin Said. Two knew what it was like to be free before being captured and placed into servitude, and longed to be free again; two were born into slavery and like the two native born Africans had aspirations of freedom. Students are invited to compare their childhood memories with the lives of these children in an effort to make history more human.
Format: lesson plan (grade 9–12 English Language Arts and Social Studies)
By Meghan Mcglinn.
The Freedmen's Bureau
In North Carolina in the Civil War and Reconstruction, page 8.5
Report by Louisa Jacobs on her and her mother Harriet's work to educate freed people in Savannah, Georgia, after the Civil War. Includes historical commentary.
Format: letter/primary source
Mapping rumors of Nat Turner's Rebellion
In North Carolina in the New Nation, page 9.2
In North Carolina History: A Sampler, page 6.2
Introduction to a series of primary sources about Nat Turner's Rebellion and the responses to it in North Carolina, including rumors of further slave insurrections and retaliation against African Americans allegedly involved. This page provides maps showing the locations of key events, the distribution of slaves in North Carolina, and the location of roads along which news would have traveled.
Format: activity
"Fear of Insurrection"
In North Carolina in the New Nation, page 9.3
Excerpt from Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl, by Harriet Jacobs, in which the author recalls the hysteria in Edenton, North Carolina, after Nat Turner's Rebellion. Includes historical commentary.
Format: book/primary source
Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl
In Antebellum North Carolina, page 3.10
Excerpt from the book by Harriet Jacobs, describing her master's attempts to exploit her sexually and her mistress' response to the situation. Includes historical commentary.
Format: book/primary source
Commentary and sidebar notes by L. Maren Wood.
Antebellum North Carolina
Primary sources and readings explore North Carolina in the antebellum period (1830–1860). Topics include slavery, daily life, agriculture, industry, technology, and the arts, as well as the events leading to secession and civil war.
Format: book (multiple pages)
North Carolina in the New Nation
Primary sources and readings explore North Carolina in the early national period (1790–1836). Topics include the development of state government and political parties, agriculture, the Great Revival, education, the gold rush, the growth of slavery, Cherokee Removal, and battles over internal improvements and reform.
Format: book (multiple pages)
A forced migration
In Colonial North Carolina, page 4.3
The first Africans, brought to America through forced migration, came as indentured servants to Jamestown, Virginia, in 1619. Africans brought to the colonies in later years were bought and sold as slaves. At the time of the American Revolution, most of the enslaved people in North Carolina lived in the eastern part of the colony and the majority lived on large plantations, where their work was critical to the state’s cash crops and economy.
Format: article
By Jennifer Farley.
Carolina Digital Library and Archives instructional plans
A listing of unit plans and lesson plans provided by University of North Carolina Library and the Carolina Digital Library and Archives.
Format: lesson plan
Selected excerpts from Harriet Jacobs slave narrative
Harriet Jacobs was born in Edenton, North Carolina, in 1813. As a young woman she ran away from her master, hiding out in a crawl space above a storeroom in her grandmother’s house for seven years. In 1842, she escaped to the North and lived as a fugitive while she worked to reunite herself with her two children. In these excerpts from her memoir, she describes her childhood, her years in the crawl space, her escape to the North, and her experiences as a free woman.
Format: book/primary source

Resources on the web

University of Virginia - American Studies Hypertext Project
This site contains an annotated directory of resources for American Studies and an archive of American Studies hypertext projects with the works of numerous American writers. The site also contains a set of maps relating to U.S. territorial expansion and an... (Learn more)
Format: website/general
Provided by: University of Virginia