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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The “who cares” approach: Long-term benefits
Using classroom footage and teacher interviews, this video addresses the long-term benefits to students of using assignments based on real-world perspectives. Teachers from elementary, middle, and high school share observations and success stories. This video...
Format: video/video
Welcome back!
In The First Year, page 3.1
Many of my friends are in professions other than teaching, and one January evening I listened as one of those friends described how much he loved the first day back at work after the winter holidays. He detailed that day, depicting a slow morning devoted to...
By Kristi Johnson Smith.
Implementing perspectives-based assignments
This video uses classroom footage and teacher interviews to offer ideas on implementing assignments based on real-world perspectives. Teachers from elementary, middle, and high school share advice and suggest how to overcome common challenges. This video is...
Format: video/video
Equal pay for equal work
In North Carolina in the early 20th century, page 4.3
Pamphlet, published in 1918 by a teacher named Julia Dameron, pointing out that women teachers were routinely paid less than men and calling for change. Includes historical commentary.
Format: pamphlet/primary source
Commentary and sidebar notes by L. Maren Wood.
Introduction: Rethinking reports
A little creativity can make research a rewarding learning experience for students and teachers alike.
By David Walbert and Melissa Thibault.
Learning about the earth through remote sensing
In CareerStart lessons: Grade eight, page 5.6
In this lesson, students will learn about remote sensing and satellite images, and will gain an understanding of how various professions use information gathered via these methods.
Format: lesson plan (grade 7–8 Science and Social Studies)
By Tammy Johnson and Martha Tedrow.
Southern women trailblazers
The resources on this page are designed to help educators teach about the changing role of women in American society, particularly in the south. By engaging in these activities, students will not only learn about women considered to be trailblazers in their time, but they will also think critically about traditional gender roles, women's roles in politics, academics, and professions, and the contributions of women to society.
Format: lesson plan
Interior design: Designing my dream room
Students will study interior design as a profession. They will integrate their study with math, writing, vocational education, and computer skills by designing their own dream bedroom.
Format: lesson plan (grade 6–8 Visual Arts Education and Mathematics)
By Paula Hightower.
The “three Rs” of school leadership
A quick check of effectiveness for school administrators.
By Chris Hitch.
Bridging language barriers
In Bridging Spanish language barriers in Southern schools, page 1.3
How schools can ease the transition for Latino immigrant students.
Format: article
By Regina Cortina.
Defining career vocabulary
In CareerStart lessons: Grade eight, page 1.6
In this lesson, students learn vocabulary terms associated with careers.
Format: lesson plan (grade 8 English Language Arts)
By Andrea Fedon, Gail Frank, and Cindy Neininger.
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.
Safeguarding the Bill of Rights
In CareerStart lessons: Grade eight, page 6.5
In this lesson plan for grade eight, students read about the Bill of Rights and assess how people in various professions work to maintain those rights.
Format: lesson plan
By Andrea Stewart, Keisha Gabriel, and Patty Grant.
Breathe in, breathe out
In CareerStart lessons: Grade seven, page 3.3
In this lesson for grade seven, students will discuss lung capacity and brainstorm careers in which it's important to have a good lung capacity. Students will conduct an experiment to measure their lung capacity.
Format: lesson plan (grade 5 and 7 English Language Arts and Science)
By John Boyd.Adapted by Mitzi Talbert.
The Raleigh Standard protests conscription
In North Carolina in the Civil War and Reconstruction, page 4.2
Newspaper editorial protesting the expansion of conscription by the Confederate government in January 1864. Includes historical commentary and background on conscription in the Civil War.
Format: newspaper/primary source
Commentary and sidebar notes by David Walbert.
Working with an embargo
In CareerStart lessons: Grade eight, page 6.6
In this lesson plan, students learn about the Embargo Act of 1807 and consider how the embargo might have affected working people at the time.
Format: lesson plan
By Andrea Stewart, Keisha Gabriel, and Patty Grant.
Key deer: Evolution and species survival
In CareerStart lessons: Grade eight, page 5.7
In this lesson, students learn about the evolutionary history of the Key deer, then discuss the animal's prospects for survival in a changing habitat.
Format: lesson plan (grade 8 Science)
By Tammy Johnson and Martha Tedrow.
Education and literacy in Edgecombe County, 1810
In North Carolina in the New Nation, page 5.4
In this 1810 letter, Jeremiah Battle of Edgecombe County describes the lack of education in eastern North Carolina and the consequences for society and politics. Includes historical commentary.
Format: letter/primary source
Commentary and sidebar notes by L. Maren Wood.
Ecuador: A study of population
In this lesson, students will create population pyramid graphs and analyze photographs to investigate population in Ecuador. Students will draw on this analysis to make predictions about how population issues will affect Ecuador's future. The lesson plan is designed to be adapted to the study of various countries.
Format: lesson plan (grade 6–7 English Language Arts, Mathematics, Science, and Social Studies)
By Eric Eaton.
Women in US history: Research lesson
Students will use the Mini Page and other sources to research important women in US history: Bessie Coleman and Sally Ride. They will make a poster comparing these two women. This is intended as an introductory lesson to research skills.
Format: lesson plan
By Summer Pennell.