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.

From the education reference

didactic instruction
Teacher-centered method of instruction in which teachers deliver and students receive lessons, best suited to brief delivery of factual information.
direct instruction
Teacher-centered instruction with methods that include scripted lesson plans, teacher lectures and presentations and student recitation, fast-paced delivery, careful attention to components of skill development, intense teacher-student and student-student interactions, homogenous skill grouping, and frequent assessments.
tiered instruction
Teaching or applying the same Standard Course of Study objective in up to three ways to meet the needs of students at three levels of preparation: 1) students not yet ready for that grade level’s instruction, 2) students just ready, and 3) students ready to go beyond.
sheltered instruction
An approach to teach language to English language learners by modifying the core curriculum to meet the language needs of those learners. Academic subjects are taught using English along with supplementary aids such as graphs, models, hands-on materials, and visual aids. Used mostly in classes comprised solely with English language learners.
North Carolina Department of Public Instruction
The North Carolina Department of Public Instruction administers the policies adopted by the State Board of Education and offers instructional, financial, technological, and personnel support to all public school systems in the state.

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Reaching every learner: Differentiating instruction in theory and practice
This series of articles, which balance theory, research, and practice, address a variety of topics within differentiation through text, graphics, and video.
Format: series (multiple pages)
Classroom management
A guide to LEARN NC's collections, designed especially for new teachers.
Format: bibliography/help
How does tiering benefit teachers?
In this video, teachers at Raleigh's Baileywick Road Elementary School discuss how creating tiered assignments has benefited them as teachers. Includes classroom footage. This video is one in a four-part series about tiering. The other videos include: ...
Format: video/video
The First Year
Essays on the author's experiences in her first year of teaching: the mistakes she made, what she learned from them, and how she used them to become a better teacher — and how other first-year teachers can, too.
Format: book (multiple pages)
Carolina Online Teacher Program (COLT)
LEARN NC’s Carolina Online Teacher (COLT) program prepares participants to be online instructors, and receive certification to instruct LEARN NC courses.
Format: article/online course
What is tiering?
In this video, teacher interviews and classroom footage explore the practice of creating tiered assignments. This video is one in a four-part series about tiering. The other videos include: How...
Format: video/video
Reflection designs
Students will be able to illustrate the geometric transformation of a reflection through creating their own unique designs.
Format: lesson plan (grade 4 and 8 Mathematics)
By Karen Boles.
Why problem-centered learning?
The world our students will live and work in will require them to gather, organize, and interpret data in the process of finding solutions to complex problems. Problem-centered learning creates a model where the student becomes the thinker.
Format: article
By Mike Kestner.
How does tiering benefit students?
In this video, three teachers from Raleigh’s Baileywick Road Elementary School discuss how creating tiered assignments has benefited their students. Includes classroom footage. This video is one in a four-part series about tiering. The other videos include:...
Format: video/video
Tour the United States
Students will combine classroom, library time, and computer lab time to research and construct knowledge about 49 U.S. states. (Students will not research their home state.) Students will use their new research knowledge and the resources provided to construct a presentation on their assigned state using PowerPoint or some other presentation program.
Format: lesson plan (grade 3 Information Skills and Social Studies)
By Karl Schaefer.
Interior Design Project
Within this lesson, students will role play the job of an interior designer.
Format: lesson plan (grade 6–12 )
By Shannon Braxton.
Algebraic thinking in elementary school
This online course will enable participants to learn how to include opportunities in the upper elementary curriculum for children to think about basic algebraic concepts, and to appreciate the importance of algebraic thinking.
Format: article/online course
AOWS8: Not your grandfathers’ wars: Teaching WWI & WWII to 21st Century learners
This course will explore some of the best resources available for learning and teaching about World War I and World War II and provide teachers with the opportunity to create and share ideas for classroom instruction.
Format: article/online course
Snap! Crackle! Box!
The student will create a new cereal and design an original box as their final for Art 1. This is a cumulative assignment incorporating the skills and techniques studied and developed throughout the course of the year.
Format: lesson plan (grade 9–12 Visual Arts Education and English Language Development)
By Joan Lansford and Peggy Peck.
Sharing time in a blended learning space
This article offers a definition for blended learning and suggests strategies for effectively implementing this instructional approach.
Format: article/best practice
By Kevin Hodgson.
To know them is to teach them
We must maintain high standards and expectations, incorporate students' experiences into the curriculum, and use culturally relevant materials.
By Barbara Rush.
Innovate to transform the classroom with Web 2.0 tools
Students will learn to integrate technologies such as Web 2.0 tools and mobile learning devices to create engaging learning experiences for your students
Format: article/online course
Can Americans define the term "learning disability?"
This article examines the statistics surrounding what Americans know — and don't know — about learning disabilities. The results highlight the necessity of educating parents and teachers more comprehensively about learning disabilities and what causes them.
Format: article
By Jennifer Job.
Lesson planning for English Language Learners using the WIDA/ELP Standards
This course provides ESL and regular K-12 classroom teachers an opportunity to plan lessons using the new NC Standard Course of Study for Limited English Proficient students known as the WIDA/ELP Standards.
Format: article/online course
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.