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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Dear Peter Rabbit
Students will identify formal language and sentence structures in friendly letters. They will use similar formal language and style to create friendly letters to other story book characters.
Format: lesson plan (grade 3–4 English Language Arts and Information Skills)
By Caroline Annas, Elizabeth Gibson, and Stephanie Johnson.
Adding support and detail without getting arrested!
This lesson plan is designed to teach students the concept of using facts to support ideas and to interpret (elaborate on) those facts in order to create a synthesized paragraph.
Format: lesson plan (grade 9–12 English Language Arts and Information Skills)
By Bonnie Mcmurray and Julie Joslin.
An American hero: Harriet Tubman
In this lesson, the school librarian and classroom teacher should work together to teach students about the life of Harriet Tubman in recognition of African-American History and Cultural Heritage Month.
Format: lesson plan (grade 1 Information Skills and Social Studies)
By Floanna Long.
Animal research: A multimedia approach
Students will be working with a partner to research a favorite animal. They will be required to use a wide variety of resources which include multimedia software packages, the Internet, and various books. The students will be looking up general information about their animal, such as its habitat, place on the food chain, size, etc. Ultimately the students will be responsible for presenting the information they have gathered in some form of multimedia presentation. This activity is primarily student-oriented rather than teacher-oriented in that the students will be selecting what animals they want to research and what materials they want to use in creating their report. The teacher will give some basic requirements and guidelines to ensure that students are on task.
Format: lesson plan (grade 4 English Language Arts, Information Skills, and Science)
By Amy Edwards.
Asian action I: Character details
Students will use drawing and writing to study characters in Asian art, focusing on the potential stories hinted at by the many details depicted in the art examples. This lesson draws on the richly detailed and expressive human and animal characters depicted in the arts of Asia. Is there a reason why Durga has so many arms? What about Ganesha and that elephant head?
Format: lesson plan (grade 2 Visual Arts Education, Information Skills, and Social Studies)
Back to the future!
In this lesson plan, students research the history of an important invention and present what they've learned through an annotated timeline, historical fiction journal accounts, and VoiceThread technology.
Format: lesson plan (grade 6 and 8 Information Skills and Social Studies)
By Diane Ruby.
Beginning biography research
Encyclopedia research skills will be taught using biographies of famous people. This is one lesson in a collaborative unit taught by both the classroom teacher and the library media coordinator.
Format: lesson plan (grade 2–3 English Language Arts and Information Skills)
By Joan Milliken.
Books we've read
This lesson plan creates a classroom database collecting information on books that students have read over a period of time determined by the teacher and/or students. By sorting and filtering, students evaluate the data and can later create other products from their findings.
Format: lesson plan (grade 3–5 Computer/Technology Skills and Information Skills)
By Mary Rizzo.
The case of the disappearing pitcher plants
This lesson addresses the cause and effect relationship between human interaction and a North Carolina endangered plant species. A role-playing scenario allows students to view the situation from a variety of positions and to collectively arrive at a solution to the problem.
Format: lesson plan (grade 8 English Language Arts, Information Skills, and Science)
By Eddie Hamblin.
Comparative anatomy: A continuum
In groups, students will design a presentation that will trace the development of an organ system through the major phyla of the animal kingdom looking for the relationships between structure and function by documenting adaptations.
Format: lesson plan (grade 9–12 English Language Development, Information Skills, and Science)
By Joan Warner and Melissa Thibault.
Features of print
In this lesson, the teacher introduces the concept of gathering information from chapter headings, bold type and other organizational features of print (such as tables of contents) in non-fiction texts in print and online.
Format: lesson plan (grade 1–2 English Language Arts and Information Skills)
By Gail Goodling, Susan Lovett, and Sue Versenyi.
Formulating questions to meet information needs of ELL students
This is a multi-activity lesson plan to teach the concept of asking engaging, researchable questions prior to reading. This leads to effective inquiries during project or research work in any content area. Using engaging questions creates a sense of connectedness by linking academic contents with students' personal concerns. The lesson is primarily designed for English language learners although it can be adapted for mainstream students. This lesson can also be modified for use with grades 4-8.
Format: lesson plan (grade 3–5 English Language Development, Information Skills, and Social Studies)
By Deborah Wilkes, Kristi Triplett, and Karen Waller.
The Frog Prince: Compare and contrast
This lesson can be used with numerous pieces of literature, films, or sound material to develop viewing and listening skills and the students' ability to compare and contrast. One of the richest sources is in the area of fairy tales and folktales. This an especially good source if you can find a modernized version in recorded form to contrast with the more traditional written form. I have used the "Frog Prince" because of this factor and because it was part of the 4th grade language arts reading unit.
Format: lesson plan (grade 4 English Language Arts and Information Skills)
By Barbara Waters.
A geometric field trip
Students conduct a field trip around the school (inside and out) looking for examples of geometric shapes. They record their findings using a digital camera and present their findings in a multimedia presentation.
Format: lesson plan (grade 3 Computer/Technology Skills, Information Skills, and Mathematics)
By Mary Rizzo.
Graphically organize a biography
This lesson is a good ending to a unit on biographies. The students will work together in small groups to create a poster that displays the information from a biography in a graphic organizer.
Format: lesson plan (grade 3 Information Skills and Social Studies)
By Ellen Benton.
How to identify search terms in an index
Students will learn to use the index to determine if the source has information about a topic and, if so, how to find the information.
Format: lesson plan (grade 6–8 Information Skills)
By April Wells, Christina Klonne, Jennifer Tuttle, and and Julie Bingham.
Integrating the internet into the curriculum: Jan Brett author study
Jan Brett's books will be used to integrate technology into different areas of the curriculum. The seven activities will each take about 30 minutes depending on the class. The highlight of the author study will be the design of a class multimedia presentation.
Format: lesson plan (grade 1 Computer/Technology Skills, English Language Arts, Information Skills, and Social Studies)
By Barb Thorson.
Interdisciplinary integrated unit on DNA and genetics Part A: Science
The first part of an interdisciplinary week-long unit on DNA and genetics, focusing on science. Parts B and C of the unit focus on math and language arts.
Format: lesson plan (grade 7–9 Information Skills and Science)
By Jane Lentz, Jimmy White, Tori Goldrick, and Marlene Smith.
Learning about Ezra Jack Keats
Students will learn about Ezra Jack Keats using a variety of resources in the media center.
Format: lesson plan (grade K English Language Arts and Information Skills)
By Brittany Basinger, Jenni Conine, and Vickie Mcmillan.
Learning language strategies through repeated readings of storybooks
This lesson will guide and teach students how to process and produce language at higher levels through meaningful, redundant, contextually appropriate, and intrinsically rewarding center-based activities related to a storybook theme.
Format: lesson plan (grade K English Language Arts and Information Skills)
By Elizabeth Winborne.