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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Tuff Canyon near the Castelon area of Big Bend National Park
 Tuff Canyon  near the Castelon area of Big Bend National Park
This photograph shows the Tuff Canyon Cliff near the Castalon area. Tuff is “a rock composed of consolidated or cemented volcanic ash.” These gray cliffs show a great deal of erosion from Blue Creek as it cut through the rock. Strewn at the base...
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Aerial view of Nevada and Vernal Falls in Yosemite National Park, CA
Aerial view of Nevada and Vernal Falls in Yosemite National Park, CA
Nevada and Vernal Falls seen aerially in Yosemite National Park, California. Nevada Falls (594 feet) appears at the top of the photo, and Vernal Falls (317 feet) appears at the bottom. Trails go to both waterfalls, but the one to Nevada Falls is more strenuous...
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Agate House in Petrified Forest National Park, AZ
Agate House in Petrified Forest National Park, AZ
The Agate House in Petrified Forest National Park, Arizona. Archeologists believe the original building was constructed almost ten centuries ago between A.D. 1050 and 1300. The ancient Puebloan people in the area used petrified wood sealed with mud mortar...
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Alligator and ducks on a pond, Everglades National Park, FL
Alligator and ducks on a pond, Everglades National Park, FL
Alligator and ducks on a pond, Everglades National Park, Florida. Everglades National Park was declared a national park in 1934, though it took the park's proponents another 13 years to acquire funds and land. The park protects approximately one-fifth of the...
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Along Chesler Park Trail in Canyonlands National Park
Along Chesler Park Trail in Canyonlands National Park
This photograph was taken looking up at the many layers of rock. Some of the layers are tan, some are red, and some are gray. Their ridges are smooth and rounded. Bushes and other plants are at their base.
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Along Peek-a-boo Trail in Bryce Canyon National Park
Along Peek-a-boo Trail in Bryce Canyon National Park
Fins, arches, and hoodoos can be seen in this photograph taken from Peek-a-boo Trail in Bryce Canyon National Park.
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Amphitheater Lake in the Tetons, Grand Teton National Park, WY
Amphitheater Lake in the Tetons, Grand Teton National Park, WY
Amphitheater Lake in the Tetons, Grand Teton National Park, Wyoming. The lake gleams in a bowl formed by mountains. Amphitheater and Surprise Lakes are glacial lakes surrounded by subalpine meadows. They are located on a strenuous trail that offers outstanding...
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Angels Landing Trail, viewed from above, Zion National Park, Utah
Angels Landing Trail, viewed from above, Zion National Park, Utah
Hikers on Angels Landing Trail, viewed from above, in Zion National Park, Utah. The trail was cut from a sheer drop of solid rock in 1926 and remains one of the park's most spectacular construction wonders. The top offers wonderful views of Zion Canyon. This...
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Animal petroglyphs on Newspaper Rock near Monticello, Utah
Animal petroglyphs on Newspaper Rock near Monticello, Utah
A detail of Newspaper Rock at Newspaper Rock State Historic Monument near Monticello, Utah. The petroglyphs depict what appear to be deer, lizards, bison, footprints, and a man riding a horse, among other figures. Newspaper Rock is one of the largest and most...
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Animal tracks in the dried mud in Death Valley, California
Animal tracks in the dried mud in Death Valley, California
Animal tracks in the dried mud in Death Valley, California. Occasional, brief rainstorms create a thin veneer of mud that later dries up into cracked plates, preserving the tracks of anything that walked on it when wet. Death Valley National Park is located...
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Arch on Peek-a-boo Trail
Arch on Peek-a-boo Trail
This photograph was taken looking through an arch on Peek-a-Boo Trail in Bryce Canyon National Park. The arch is in a shadow and beyond it the Canyon's land formations can be seen.
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Arches Monument Utah
Arches Monument Utah
The land formations in Arches National Park have been evolving over millions of years. Rocks seem to balance atop pillars and plants live despite the harsh conditions.
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Arches National Park at sunset
Arches National Park at sunset
The sun is setting and is partially obscured by a bank of clouds. Some of the land formations at Arches National Park can be seen in silhouette.
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The arms of a windswept tree on Sentinel Dome, Yosemite National Park, CA.
The arms of a windswept tree on Sentinel Dome, Yosemite National Park, CA.
The arms of a windswept tree on Sentinel Dome, Yosemite National Park, CA. Its branches appear to embrace one another. Its limbs are weathered to a bleached silver and gold. Hikers on Sentinel Dome can enjoy a stunning 360 degree view of the mountain ranges...
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Awed visitors in Mariposa Grove, Yosemite National Park, CA
Awed visitors in Mariposa Grove, Yosemite National Park, CA
Visitors awed at giant sequoias in Mariposa Grove, Yosemite National Park, California. Mariposa Grove is home to hundreds of giant sequoias. While not the world's tallest tree, they are often considered for their sheer volume to be the largest living things...
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Awed visitors on the road in Mariposa Grove, Yosemite National Park, CA
Awed visitors on the road in Mariposa Grove, Yosemite National Park, CA
Visitors awed at giant sequoias in Mariposa Grove, Yosemite National Park, California. Mariposa Grove is home to hundreds of giant sequoias. While not the world's tallest trees, they are often considered by their sheer volume to be the largest living things...
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Baby alligators in Shark Valley, Everglades National Park, FL
Baby alligators in Shark Valley, Everglades National Park, FL
Baby alligators in Shark Valley, Everglades National Park, Florida. Shark Valley is at the heart of the park in a sawgrass marsh. Visitors can explore the area by boardwalk, hiking trail, or observation tower. Everglades National Park was declared a national...
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The bad lands at Petrified Forest National Park, AZ
The bad lands at Petrified Forest National Park, AZ
Eroded rock formations in the bad lands at Petrified Forest National Park, Arizona. Deposition, uplift, and erosion have created a diverse landscape over millions of years. Many formations, such as mesas and buttes, are formed when a protective cap of sandstone...
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Bad lands in Petrified Forest National Park, AZ
Bad lands in Petrified Forest National Park, AZ
The sculpted ridges of bad lands in Petrified Forest National Park, Arizona. The formations show that thousands of years of mineral deposition have created colorful stripes in the surface of the rock. Deposition, uplift, and erosion have created a diverse...
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Balanced Rock at Arches National Park
Balanced Rock at Arches National Park
The size of three school buses, Balanced Rock appears to be precariously perched on its pedestal. The red sandstone landform has eroded over millions of years. Next to Balanced Rock is a smaller balanced rock called “Chip Off the Old Block.” This...
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