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.

Narrow your search

Resources tagged with music are also tagged with these keywords. Select one to narrow your search or to find interdisciplinary resources.

African American spirituals
In Antebellum North Carolina, page 6.2
Excerpt from Frederick Douglass' autobiography in which he describes the purpose and effect of spirituals for enslaved people. Includes historical commentary.
Format: book/primary source
Analyzing the songs of the Regulators
In this lesson plan, students read songs written by the Regulators -- protesters against high taxes in North Carolina's Piedmont just before the American Revolution. Students analyze the lyrics of the songs to determine the political, economic, and social concerns of the Regulators.
Format: lesson plan (grade 8 Social Studies)
By Jamie Lathan.
Antebellum North Carolina
Primary sources and readings explore North Carolina in the antebellum period (1830–1860). Topics include slavery, daily life, agriculture, industry, technology, and the arts, as well as the events leading to secession and civil war.
Format: book (multiple pages)
The Ballad of Frankie Silver
In Antebellum North Carolina, page 6.7
Frankie Silver was hanged in Morganton in 1833 for the murder of her husband. According to legend, she sang her confession from the gallows. This version of her "ballad" was printed in a Morganton newspaper in 1884.
Format: music/primary source
The development of sacred singing
In North Carolina in the New Nation, page 3.11
In North Carolina History: A Sampler, page 2.5
In the first half of the nineteenth century, the music of southern white churches expanded to express a broader range of emotions. To help singers, "shape-note" tunebooks were developed with easy-to-read notation. Includes audio of present-day shape-note singing.
Format: article
By Gavin James Campbell.
Frankie Silver
In Antebellum North Carolina, page 6.6
Frankie Silver was hanged in Morganton in 1833 for the murder of her husband. According to legend, she sang her confession from the gallows.
Format: article
Freedom songs of the civil rights movement
Students will listen to freedom songs recorded during the civil rights movement, 1960–1965. Students will write about personal reactions to the music and lyrics. Through reading and pictures, students will briefly explore historical events where these songs were sung. Listening again, students will analyze and describe — musically — particular song(s).
Format: lesson plan (grade 5 Music Education and Social Studies)
By Merritt Raum Flexman.
From stringbands to bluesmen: African American music in the Piedmont
In North Carolina in the early 20th century, page 6.8
In North Carolina History: A Sampler, page 8.5
This article from Carolina Music Ways discusses the transition in African American music from stringband to blues in the North Carolina Piedmont between 1860 and 1940, with a focus on Preston Fulp, a blues musician who gained prominence in Winston-Salem in the 1930s.
Format: article
The Gospel Train
In Antebellum North Carolina, page 6.3
Audio and lyrics of an African American spiritual. Includes historical commentary.
Format: music/primary source
The Great Depression and World War II
Primary sources and readings explore the history of North Carolina and the United States during the Great Depression and World War II (1929–1945).
Format: book (multiple pages)
A guided journey into the past
In Intrigue of the Past, page 5.7
In their study of archaeological resource conservation, students will use guided imagery to discover and judge an alternative way to enjoy artifacts without removing them from archaeological sites.
Format: lesson plan (grade 3–4 Visual Arts Education, English Language Arts, and Social Studies)
Hillbillies and mountain folk: Early stringband recordings
In North Carolina in the early 20th century, page 6.9
This article from Carolina Music Ways explores the history of "hillbilly" records in the North Carolina Piedmont in the 1920s and 1930s.
Format: article
I'm Gwine Home on de Mornin' Train
In Antebellum North Carolina, page 6.4
Audio and lyrics of an African American spiritual. Includes historical commentary.
Format: music/primary source
The influence of radio
In Postwar North Carolina, page 2.6
This article from Carolina Music Ways discusses the rise of three radio stations in the North Carolina Piedmont between 1930 and 1960.
Format: article
Intrigue of the Past
Lesson plans and essays for teachers and students explore North Carolina's past before European contact. Designed for grades four through eight, the web edition of this book covers fundamental concepts, processes, and issues of archaeology, and describes the peoples and cultures of the Paleoindian, Archaic, Woodland, and Mississippian periods.
Format: book (multiple pages)
Joining together in song: Piedmont music in black and white
In Antebellum North Carolina, page 6.1
This article from Carolina Music Ways discusses musical interactions between African Americans and European Americans prior to the Civil War, including African American participation in Moravian sacred music and the contributions of black and white Americans to the string band tradition in the North Carolina Piedmont.
Format: article
Jubilee quartets and the Five Royales: From gospel to rhythm & blues
In North Carolina in the early 20th century, page 6.10
This article from Carolina Music Ways discusses the transition in African American music from gospel music to secular rhythm and blues between 1920 and 1960.
Format: article
Long Way to Travel
In Antebellum North Carolina, page 6.5
Audio and lyrics of an African American spiritual. Includes historical commentary.
Format: music/primary source
The Mill Mother's Lament
In North Carolina in the early 20th century, page 8.8
Song by labor activist Ella Mae Wiggins sung during the Loray Mill strike in Gastonia, 1929. Includes biographical information about Wiggins.
Format: music/primary source
Commentary and sidebar notes by L. Maren Wood.
Music and morale
In The Great Depression and World War II, page 6.6
In North Carolina History: A Sampler, page 9.10
The military recognized early on that music could keep soldiers' and sailors' morale up, and popular music became a way to entertain servicemen. The government pressed special records, called V-Discs (V for Victory), featuring popular artists. The recordings on this page include the song "Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy" and a German-language propaganda broadcast of Glenn Miller's "In the Mood."
Format: music