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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A'planting we will go
This lesson is based on the book, The Tiny Seed, by Eric Carle. This story will be used to introduce the students to the concept that seeds change and grow into plants when conditions in the environment including temperature, light, water and soil are appropriate. Students will learn that plants produce seeds that can become new plants. Through extended activities, the students will experience first-hand the germination of seeds. They will become familiar with the parts of a plant and learn how each part works to produce a healthy plant.
Format: lesson plan (grade 1 English Language Arts, English Language Development, and Science)
By Karol Schriber.
All about trash
Students will discover which kinds of trash break down naturally and which do not when they make their own landfills.
Format: lesson plan (grade 3 Science)
By Dawn Gilbert.
Classification and attributes
In Intrigue of the Past, page 1.7
In their study of classification and attributes, students will use “doohickey kits” to classify objects based on their attributes, and explain that scientists and specifically archaeologists use classification to help answer research questions.
Format: lesson plan (grade 3–4 Social Studies)
Convection currents
Students work together to show convection currents in the air. They construct a paper propeller that will be caused to spin as a result of the transfer of heat energy through the air.
Format: lesson plan (grade 6 Science)
By Jillian Dube.
Students will observe decomposition in a pile of grass clippings and in a compost heap over time.
Format: lesson plan (grade 5 Science)
By Monica Dubbs.
The effects of acid rain on the environment
This is an experiment in which groups of students are given healthy plants to water with different solutions of an acid rain mixture made in class. Students will document and present their findings. This lesson plan has modifications for an Intermediate Low English Language Learner (ESL student).
Format: lesson plan (grade 7–8 English Language Development and Science)
By Helen Beall and Heather Hughes-Buchanan.
Embryology: Hatching baby chicks
This lesson integrates science, math, communication skills, arts, and social studies through hands-on activities. Students are directly involved in hatching baby chicks.
Format: lesson plan (grade 1–2 and 4 Science)
By Ann White.
Exploring pumpkins
This lesson will allow students to use a variety of methods to explore pumpkins.
Format: lesson plan (grade K Mathematics and Science)
By Angelia Braswell.
Faces tell feelings - Part 2 - Observations
Students will view a PowerPoint presentation of various portraits by different artists. They will observe facial expressions and the emotions they convey in these works of art.
Format: lesson plan (grade 3–5 Visual Arts Education)
By Jan Kimosh.
Five days, five senses
In this lesson, students will learn about the five senses through observations and hands-on activities.
Format: lesson plan (grade K Science)
By Nancy Ziegler.
From dirt to dinner
This lesson serves as an introductory study of the plant world. The lesson allows students to study seeds, parts of plants, microclimates, and how to grow seeds into vegetable plants for harvest. Parents are encouraged to assist at home.
Format: lesson plan (grade K–1 English Language Arts, Mathematics, and Science)
By Glenn Bass.
From seed to plant
This lesson will give students an opportunity to learn about seed parts, how a plant grows, and to compare plants.
Format: lesson plan (grade 1 Science)
By Gretchen Barkowitz.
Getting an angle on light
Students will discover that the angle of the sun can mark time and is responsible for the color we see in the sky. Students will also understand that light can be reflected and refracted.
Format: lesson plan (grade 3 Mathematics and Science)
By Janet Jones.
Getting down & dirty with soils
In this lesson, we will explore different kinds of soil (humus, sand, clay). The students will plant seeds in the different soils as part of further exploration.
Format: lesson plan (grade 1 English Language Arts and Science)
By Amy Rhyne, Paulette Keys, and Sarah Carson.
Getting to know spiders
This lesson is useful for helping students understand the differences between spiders and insects. They will also learn about a spider's particular body parts. Live spiders will be observed over the course of a few days to see how sound, light, and movement affect the spiders.
Format: lesson plan (grade 2 Science)
By Bree Welmaker.
Growing cooties
This lesson teaches the importance of washing hands to reduce the spread of germs. In this lesson, students will see mold develop over time on a potato as the result of handling the potato with dirty hands.
Format: lesson plan (grade 1 Healthful Living)
By Ronda Odenwelder.
How does your flower grow?
Students will develop science process skills by observing plants in various conditions and recording their observation over a period of time
Format: lesson plan (grade 1 Science)
By Bobbie Toler.
Inside a baby seed
Students will identify the three main parts of a seed after the bean/seeds have been soaked in water overnight.
Format: lesson plan (grade 1 Science)
By Thelma Pike.
Is it living?
Students will identify living and nonliving things.
Format: lesson plan (grade K–1 English Language Arts and Science)
By Genita Powell.
Let's hear it for sound!
This lesson will help students build an understanding of the concepts of sound (vibration, pitch) through participation in a variety of hands-on experiments. By observing, predicting, and analyzing results, students can actively investigate the science of sound.
Format: lesson plan (grade 2 Science)
By Carol Helms.