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


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From the education reference

collaborative learning
An umbrella term for the variety of approaches and models in education that involve the shared intellectual efforts by students working in small groups to accomplish a goal or complete a task.
collaborative teaching
Instructional strategy used across subject areas primarily in middle grades in a variety of methods. Teams are typically composed of between two and four teachers working collaboratively to plan thematic units and lesson plans in order to provide a more supportive environment for students. Also known as team teaching or co-teaching.

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Project-based learning
Project-based learning is a teaching approach that engages students in sustained, collaborative real-world investigations. Projects are organized around a driving question, and students participate in a variety of tasks that seek to meaningfully address this...
Format: article
By Heather Coffey.
Topics in Science Education
In Preservice teacher education resources, page 3.2
Resources Specific to Science Inquiry Letting Students Ask the Questions — And Answer Them A look at an inquiry-based earth and environmental...
Format: article/teacher's guide
Museum exhibit design
In Alternative discussion formats, page 6
In Educator's Guides: North Carolina Digital History, page 4.6
Designing museum exhibits encourages students to think creatively and to use a wide range of thinking skills.
Format: activity
By Kathryn Walbert.
Keeping students digitally safe
Interactive web applications offer a variety of ways for students to share their work with teachers, classmates, and the world. This article suggests best practices for keeping students' identities safe while using these tools.
Format: article
By Bill Ferriter.
Four myths about online learning
There are a number of myths circulating about online courses. This article explains what online courses are and debunks some of those myths.
Format: article/help
By Ross White.
Strategies for online reading comprehension
This article examines the differences between reading in print and reading online, and proposes some tools and strategies to help aid students' reading comprehension and information literacy in online environments.
Format: article/best practice
By Kevin Hodgson.
Fairy tales: Another point of view
This lesson is on comparing and contrasting (alike and different) two different versions of The Three Little Pigs. Students will use the original fairy tale The Three Little Pigs previously learned in the lesson Fairy Tales and compare it to the story The True Story of the Three Little Pigs. This story gives the wolf's point of view.
Format: lesson plan (grade 1 Visual Arts Education, English Language Arts, English Language Development, and Theater Arts Education)
By Audra Penrod and Vivian Lages.
North Carolina Cherokee Indians: The Trail of Tears
In this two week unit, students will study the Cherokee by participating in literature circles, learning about Native American story telling, writing a letter to Andrew Jackson to protest against the Creek War, and more.
Format: lesson plan (grade 4–5 English Language Arts and Social Studies)
By Gina Golden.
North Carolina
“Tarheels”, “the Old North State”, “the Land of the Longleaf Pine”, all mean North Carolina. Here you will find a sampling of instructional resources to teach your students about the history, people and places, government, and economy of the state you live in - North Carolina!
Format: bibliography/help
The not-so-famous person report
In Rethinking Reports, page 3.2
Instead of teaching the history of the famous, use research in primary sources to teach students that the past and present were made by people like them.
Format: article
By David Walbert.
Motor car and galimoto: An intercultural lesson in pragmatism, creativity, and perseverance
In this lesson for grade three, students read the book Galimoto, about a young boy in Malawi, Africa, and his quest to gather wire in order to make a toy car. Students discuss the literary elements of the book, study the language used, and complete their own quests to gather wire and create their own galimotos.
Format: lesson plan (grade 3–4 Visual Arts Education, English Language Arts, and Social Studies)
By Edie McDowell.
Asynchronous conversation matters: Part II
Meaningful online asynchronous discussion requires careful planning. Using the tips from this article, teachers can create questions that will generate enthusiasm for a topic and motivate students to think critically and practice skills of collaborative dialogue.
Format: article
By Bill Ferriter.
The secret cultural institution in your school: The school library
A variety of best practices and imaginative ideas that the school librarian can use to create an environment where students fuse together required learning with learning that is driven by individual interest.
Format: article
By Kim Campbell.
Keep parents in the loop with a class website
This article discusses the process of creating a website to keep your students' parents apprised of what's happening in your classroom. The author discusses a variety of tools, including blogs, wikis, Google sites, and paid hosting websites, and suggests elements to include in a useful website.
Format: article/best practice
By Rebeccah Haines.
Challenge-based learning: José Garcia's innovative approach to student inquiry
This article discusses the instructional strategies of Greene County Middle School science teacher José Garcia. Mr. Garcia employs challenge-based learning, which marries project-based learning with student inquiry and makes effective use of technology. José Garcia received an Apple Distinguished Educator award in 2009 and was Teacher of the Year in his school and county in 2008-2009.
Format: article
By Dan Lewandowski.
Inside and outside: Paradox of the box
This lesson serves to introduce students to symbolism (the box), to the literary element paradox, and to the abstract notion of ambiguity (freedom vs. confinement). It is designed for 2nd and 3rd graders, but may be adapted for use with upper elementary or early middle school grades.
Format: lesson plan (grade 2–6 English Language Arts)
By Edie McDowell.
Becoming an online teacher
For even the most experienced classroom teacher, teaching online requires a thoughtful transition to the new environment.
Format: article
By Bobby Hobgood, Ed.D..
Reaching Latinos through social studies
In Bridging Spanish language barriers in Southern schools, page 4.1
Teachers can help immigrant students feel more comfortable in the classroom by basing social studies lessons on students' own knowledge and backgrounds.
By Paul Fitchett.
Microsoft Office Mix
Microsoft Office Mix is an add-on for Powerpoint that allows teachers and students to create interactive multimedia presentations featuring audio, video, slides, inking on slides, interactive activities, and interactive assessments.
Inclusion in the 21st-century classroom: Differentiating with technology
In Reaching every learner: Differentiating instruction in theory and practice, page 7
While most teachers recognize the need to differentiate instruction, many face barriers in implementation. These barriers include lack of time to prepare lessons, the need to cover a wide range of content in a small amount of time, and extensive classroom management needs. This article advocates for using technology as a means to overcome some of these barriers.
Format: article/best practice
By Bobby Hobgood, Ed.D. and Lauren Ormsby.