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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20th-century warfare: Unique contributions of American Indians
In this lesson, high school students will assess the importance and contributions of the American Indian in the United States' twentieth century wars. They focus in particular on the Navajo Code Talkers.
Format: lesson plan (grade 11–12 Social Studies)
By John B. Jones.
The Birchbark House
This study guide was created by a group of third grade enrichment students. They were planning to read this book but could find no published guide to go with it. They decided to create their own as they read.
Format: lesson plan (grade 3–4 English Language Arts)
By Carolyn Ridgway.
Along the Trail of Tears
A part of history is often forgotten when teaching younger students. This is the relocation of the Cherokee Indians when the white settlers wanted their property. The US Government moved whole groups of Indians under harsh conditions. This trip became known as the Trail of Tears. Using this as a background students will explore and experiment with persuasive writing as they try to express the position of Cherokee leaders.
Format: lesson plan (grade 4–5 English Language Arts and Social Studies)
By Glenda Bullard.
Analyzing primary sources: John White and the "lost colonists"
In Two worlds: Educator's guide, page 4.3
In this lesson, students will read about John White's attempt to find the "lost colonists" in 1590, and will practice thinking critically and analyzing primary source documents.
Format: lesson plan (grade 8 English Language Arts and Social Studies)
By Pauline S. Johnson.
And justice for all: The Trail of Tears, Mexican deportation, and Japanese internment
Many textbooks mention the Trail of Tears, but fail to mention that this early displacement of an ethnic minority is only the one of many legally-sanctioned forced relocations. This lesson will address the displacement of American Indians through the Trail of Tears, the forced deportation of Mexican Americans during the Great Depression, and the internment of Japanese American citizens during WWII.
Format: lesson plan (grade 8–12 English Language Arts and Social Studies)
By Patricia Camp.
Anticipation guide: The importance of one simple plant
In Two worlds: Educator's guide, page 2.9
This activity is designed to be used with the article "The Importance of One Simple Plant." A series of true/false statements will enable students to compare what they previously knew about maize with what they've learned by reading the article.
Format: /lesson plan (grade 8 Social Studies)
By Pauline S. Johnson.
In Intrigue of the Past, page 2.6
Students will use pictures of seeds, an activity sheet, and a graph to identify seven seeds and the conditions in which they grow. They will also infer ancient plant use by interpreting archaeobotanical samples and determine changing plant use by Native North Carolinians by interpreting a graph of seed frequency over time.
Format: lesson plan (grade 4–5 and 8 Science and Social Studies)
Artifact classification
In Intrigue of the Past, page 2.4
Students will use pictures of artifacts or objects from a teaching kit to classify artifacts and answer questions about the lifeways of a group of historic Native Americans.
Format: lesson plan (grade 3–4 Social Studies)
Cherokee clans
In Teaching about North Carolina American Indians, page 3.1
Introduction Hollywood movies have not accurately portrayed American Indians who lived in North Carolina. By researching and role playing the seven clans of the Cherokee, the false stereotypes will be replaced with factual knowledge and understanding....
Format: lesson plan (grade 4 Social Studies)
By Linda Tabor.
Cherokee lore and traditions
In Teaching about North Carolina American Indians, page 3.3
Length 9 Weeks Class Length: 45 minutes - Meets daily Learning outcomes Promotes life-long learning: appreciation of different cultures. Provides hands-on activities: making masks. Integrates with EOG testing: reading....
Format: lesson plan (grade 6 and 8 English Language Arts and Social Studies)
By Patricia Lancaster.
Cherokee relocation
Students will use primary sources to investigate the boundaries of the Cherokee lands set for North Carolina after the Revolutionary War.
Format: lesson plan (grade 8–10 Social Studies)
By Donna Hernandez.
Coastal Plain cultures graphic organizer
In Two worlds: Educator's guide, page 2.5
As students read the article "Peoples of the Coastal Plain," this graphic organizer will help them develop an understanding of the cultures that existed in North Carolina's Coastal Plain hundreds of years ago.
Format: /lesson plan (grade 8 Social Studies)
By Pauline S. Johnson.
Colonial and state records of North Carolina
Lessons developed using the Colonial State Records of North Carolina collection from Documenting the American South
Format: lesson plan (multiple pages)
A comprehensive study of North Carolina Indian tribes
Students will apply their research skills of gathering and validating information to study the eight state-recognized American Indian tribes of North Carolina in order to create an Honors U.S. History Project. Students then will create a comprehensive study of those tribes to be compiled into a notebook to be copied and shared with the eighth grade teachers of North Carolina History in our county.
Format: lesson plan (grade 11–12 Social Studies)
By Wanda Taylor.
Creating the biased image of the American Indian
In North Carolina maps, page 3.3
In this lesson, students use representations of Native Americans on maps from 1590-1800, as well as colonial narratives from that time period, to examine how the depictions and biases of the native cultures were formed. Students will analyze primary source documents for audience, tone, and positionality in their study. This lesson is ideal for an English language arts class or U.S. History class.
Format: lesson plan (grade 11–12 English Language Arts and Social Studies)
By Jennifer Job.
Culture everywhere
In Intrigue of the Past, page 1.3
In their study of culture, students will use a chart to show the different ways that cultures meet basic human needs and recognize that archaeologists study how people from past cultures met basic needs by analyzing and interpreting the artifacts and sites that they left behind.
Format: lesson plan (grade 4 and 8 English Language Arts and Social Studies)
De Soto in America
In Two worlds: Educator's guide, page 3.4
In this lesson for grades 5-8, students will evaluate the effectiveness of the De Soto expedition through the interior of the southeastern United States in the years 1539-1543. They will examine the impact of that trip on the Native Americans. Students will engage in historical empathy as they put themselves in the place of the Native Americans and the Spanish soldiers who encountered them on the expedition.
Format: lesson plan
By Pauline S. Johnson.
Educator's guide: Spain and America
In Two worlds: Educator's guide, page 3.1
The article "Spain and America: From Reconquest to Conquest" introduces a lot of information and a number of issues that may be new to students. These suggestions will help you use the article in a way that best fits the needs of your class.
Format: /lesson plan (grade 8–12 Social Studies)
By Pauline S. Johnson.
Experimental archaeology: Making cordage
In Intrigue of the Past, page 2.8
Students will make cordage and use an activity sheet to experience a technique and skill that ancient Native Americans in North Carolina needed for everyday life. They will also compute the amount of time and materials that might have been required to make cordage and construct a scientific inquiry to study the contents of an archaeological site.
Format: lesson plan (grade 8 Visual Arts Education and Social Studies)
Family story with research
Using the book, When The Legends Die and a Native American story-telling unit, students gather a family story of their own.
Format: lesson plan (grade 11–12 English Language Arts and Social Studies)
By Eric Broer.