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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Erosion
In Lonely mountains: The monadnocks of the inner Piedmont, page 7
Another interesting feature of the quartzite is the way it erodes. Its rate of erosion is slow, and thus so is the monadnock's erosion beneath it. But when it does erode, it forms curved surfaces that geologists call “spherical or curved weathering.”...
By Dirk Frankenberg.
Subtidal seafloor
In Evidence of rising sea level: Coastal erosion and plant community changes, page 9
Salt marshes do well in irregularly flooded areas, but rising sea level continuously converts these areas into regularly flooded habitats and then into a new seafloor. Some marsh plants, especially smooth cordgrass, can tolerate the first of these conversions,...
By Dirk Frankenberg.
Groins at Cape Hatteras
In Natural and human impacts on the northern Outer Banks, page 20
When the lighthouse was threatened by erosion in the early 1960s, the federal government responded with a series of efforts to stem the shoreline's retreat. In 1966, the National Park Service undertook a $300,000 beach replenishment project that pumped sand...
By Blair Tormey and Dirk Frankenberg.
Micromonadnocks
In Lonely mountains: The monadnocks of the inner Piedmont, page 3
The process of monadnock formation is often demonstrated in small scale when rocky fill dirt erodes during rainstorms. An example of such a “micromonadnock” in some eroded fill near Chapel Hill is shown in Figure 2. Note the flat rocks at the peak...
By Dirk Frankenberg.
Beachfront erosion
In Large sand volume barrier islands: Environmental processes and development risks, page 17
Figure 16 shows another example of beachfront erosion. This house has fallen victim to a repositioning of Bogue Inlet as a result of Hurricanes Bonnie and Fran in 1996. The inlet between Bear Island and Bogue Bank had once been located here, but during a 20-year...
By Dirk Frankenberg.
Developing salt marsh
In Evidence of rising sea level: Coastal erosion and plant community changes, page 12
In case you were doubtful that salt marshes can really invade and take over forested areas, I have included Figure 11 to lay these doubts to rest. In this photograph you will see a developing salt marsh with the trunks and roots of the preexisting forest still...
By Dirk Frankenberg.
Waves and erosion
In Evidence of rising sea level: Coastal erosion and plant community changes, page 5
Figure 4 shows that rising sea level brings the eroding power of waves to the sound side of barrier islands as well as to the ocean side. Here we see the steep and collapsing face of an old beach ridge along the Roosevelt Nature Trail on the sound side of...
By Dirk Frankenberg.
Evidence of rising sea level: Coastal erosion and plant community changes
A Carolina Environmental Diversity Explorations “virtual field trip” that examines the causes and effects of changes in sea level, both short-term (as a result of storms) and long-term (as a result of climate change).
Format: slideshow (multiple pages)
Beach erosion
In Small sand volume barrier islands: Environmental processes and development risks, page 16
Figure 14 shows how beach erosion has undermined the deck and foundations of the houses in the foreground and apparently has threatened to do the same in the multifamily dwelling behind them. Note the remnants of an earlier dune on the right, and the roadway...
By Dirk Frankenberg.
A beachfront house threatened by erosion
In Evidence of rising sea level: Coastal erosion and plant community changes, page 3
Figure 2 shows a beachfront house being undercut by waves. Unfortunately, this kind of damage happens frequently as sea level rises and erosion eats into the shoreline. Erosion into housing areas usually occurs when something happens to increase the local...
By Dirk Frankenberg.
Piedmont sands and clays
In Clays of the Piedmont: Origins, recovery, and use, page 10.10
North Carolina's landmass has twice been subjected to major bouts of mountain building followed by erosion. The mountain building events have been described in another field trip in this series, the Roan Mountain Highlands. The remnants of the erosion of these...
By Dirk Frankenberg.
A high-elevation creek
In Roan Mountain Highlands, page 17
Figure 15 shows another view of the high-elevation northern hardwoods community with the headwaters of a typical mountain drainage creek. Note the relatively large size and square shape of the stones in the creek. This is what we would expect in small headwater...
By Jennifer Godwin-Wyer and Dirk Frankenberg.
Defending the shoreline
In Evidence of rising sea level: Coastal erosion and plant community changes, page 14
Owners of property on both the peninsula and the barrier island are not pleased when rising sea level kills their trees and increases the likelihood that their land and buildings will be flooded during storms. There is a continuing controversy about whether...
By Dirk Frankenberg.
Coastal processes and conflicts: North Carolina's Outer Banks
The lessons in this unit allow students to explore the processes affecting North Carolina's Outer Banks and the impact these processes have on daily life there.
Format: lesson plan (multiple pages)
Erosion in the Outer Banks
In North Carolina maps, page 3.2
In this lesson, students gain an understanding of the different perspectives on erosion in the Outer Banks over the past century by implementing research and map comparisons between Google Earth and early 20th century Coastal Maps.
Format: lesson plan (grade 9–12 Science)
By Jennifer Job.
Acidic cove forest on a mountain creek
In Jocassee Gorges: Temperate rain forests of the Blue Ridge, page 11
The water that runs off the high slopes and off the Highlands Plateau is quickly organized into creeks and begins its descent towards the sea. The upper reaches of these creeks are too small to have great erosive power, but they can still carry sediments downstream...
By Dirk Frankenberg and Stephanie Walters.
The northern Outer Banks
In Natural and human impacts on the northern Outer Banks, page 1
The United States is currently experiencing a population boom along its eastern coast, and the development of beaches and coastal areas is taking place at an alarming rate. As humans invade the coastal zone, more and more reports are heard of erosion and property...
By Blair Tormey and Dirk Frankenberg.
How were the Jocassee Gorges formed?
In Jocassee Gorges: Temperate rain forests of the Blue Ridge, page 2
Basically, erosion formed the Jocassee Gorges. For most of its length, the eastern continental divide, which separates land that drains to the Atlantic Ocean from land that drains to the Gulf of Mexico, runs northeast to southwest parallel to the Blue Ridge...
By Dirk Frankenberg and Stephanie Walters.
Lonely mountains: The monadnocks of the inner Piedmont
This Carolina Environmental Diversity Explorations “virtual field trip” explores the geology of North Carolina's monadnocks, mountains that rise individually above the surrounding topogaphy.
Format: slideshow (multiple pages)
Beach Erosion
Beach Erosion
Format: image/photograph