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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“ottos mops” by Ernst Jandl
This lesson is designed for students to enjoy a short amusing poem, as well as refine their knowledge of short “o” and long “o” sounds, and use higher order thinking skills to analyze who or what otto and mops are.
Format: lesson plan (grade 9–12 Second Languages)
By Helga Fasciano.
Bio-Poem introductions
Bio-Poems can be used at the beginning of school as an opening activity for the first week of school. They can also be used anytime throughout the year when introductions are necessary (e.g. change of semester class, new students, etc.). In this lesson students will use the writing process as well as computer word processing skills. This activity ensures success and builds self-esteem.
Format: lesson plan (grade 6–7 Guidance)
By Linda Taylor.
Career research and acrostic poetry
In CareerStart lessons: Grade six, page 1.6
In this lesson for grade 6, each student will research a chosen career and will use the information to create an acrostic poem.
Format: lesson plan (grade 6–8 English Language Arts and Guidance)
By Holly Grout, Deborah Smith, and Natalie Summers.Adapted by Jennifer Brookshire and Julie McCann.
"Casey at the Bat" and narrative poems
In The Walking Classroom, page 4
In this lesson for fifth grade language arts, students listen to the narrative poem "Casey at the Bat" and learn how narrative poetry tells a story.
Format: lesson plan
Cause and effect
Students will identify and interpret cause and effect as expressed in poetry.
Format: lesson plan (grade 3–4 English Language Arts)
By Rochelle Mullis.
Commemorative landscapes
These lessons for elementary, middle, and high school were developed in collaboration with The University of North Carolina Library Commemorative Landscapes project to introduce and promote student understanding and writing of North Carolina’s history through commemorative sites, landscapes, and markers.
Format: lesson plan (multiple pages)
Creating found poetry from picture books
Students select and read a picture book and afterwards create “found poetry” based on the picture book.
Format: lesson plan (grade 7 English Language Arts)
By Barbara Groome and Jo Peterson Gibbs.
"Der Handschuh" by Friedrich Schiller
Students will have the opportunity to explore the poem, “Der Handschuh,” through shared reading, shared writing, and phonemic strategies that lead to fluency and comprehension.
Format: lesson plan (grade 9–12 Second Languages)
By Thomas Skinner.
Diamante poetry using environments: Day two
This lesson will introduce and reinforce learners' understanding of habitat components within an environment. This lesson was designed to be used after the lesson "Animal environments: Day one."
Format: lesson plan (grade 4 English Language Arts and Science)
By Cheri Cole.
Diction in Maya Angelou's poem "Remembering"
The class will annotate and discuss Angelou's poem. Then they will select specific words and complete a webbing that asks them to explore the connotations of the word as well as consider the author's purpose in using it.
Format: lesson plan (grade 9–10 English Language Arts)
By Vickie Smith.
This lesson will help students become more understanding of cultural differences. Students will analyze the theme of escape in two poems. They will recognize and record literary elements found in the poems and connect the poems to life in a meaningful way.
Format: lesson plan (grade 9–10 English Language Arts)
By Mary Lou Faircloth.
Figurative language: Metaphor
This lesson is a part of a unit on poetry and figurative language. It is designed to teach students the characteristics of metaphor within the context of poetry.
Format: lesson plan (grade 6 English Language Arts)
By Nancy Meyers.
Figurative language: Similes
Students will define and identify similes as well as evaluate the use of similes in the poem, "The Base Stealer" by Robert Francis.
Format: lesson plan (grade 3–4 English Language Arts)
By Kimberly Conville.
Flying high with hot air balloons!
This lesson plan, written for the Novice High Second Language Student, uses the historical fiction book The Big Balloon Race by Eleanor Coerr, to reinforce basic vocabulary and introduce new vocabulary while tying into many community sponsored hot air balloon events held in the fall.
Format: lesson plan (grade 6 English Language Arts and English Language Development)
By Barbara Boal.
Haiku and photography: A natural connection
This lesson will allow students to combine photographing nature with creating a Haiku poem to express what they see in the photograph.
Format: lesson plan (grade 3–4 Visual Arts Education and English Language Arts)
By Steven Sather.
Heaven or Groundhog Day?
This unit is designed to appeal to adolescents with its non-print text base, the movie Groundhog Day. The pre-viewing activities prepare students for the allusions in the movie and include cultural literacy. The teacher can pick and choose from the activities to apply the concept of personal growth. The teacher may select from activities for science, workplace ethics, music, computer competency, and English language arts. The teacher may modify any of the attachments to suit the students' needs and interests.
Format: lesson plan (grade 9–12 English Language Arts and Social Studies)
By David Melton and Julia Millush.
An integrated poetry unit
My students have always disliked poetry. The different ways in which this lesson approaches poetry and the connection it makes to their "March Madness" studies seems to make poetry more enjoyable, fun, and relevant for my students. In order to integrate with the sixth grade math and social studies teachers, I teach this unit during the ACC tournament to coincide with the "March Madness" unit that is covered in the math classes.
Format: lesson plan (grade 6 English Language Arts)
By Nancy Guthrie.
Introducing simple machines: A machine walk
This is an integrated lesson exploring simple machines. The poetry response part of this lesson serves to spark the students' interest as well as allow the teacher to identify students' prior knowledge of machine concepts and vocabulary. The machine walk gives a baseline assessment of students' understanding. The majority of students originally focus on complex machines; this will be evident by the types of machines they identify on their list.
Format: lesson plan (grade 4 English Language Arts)
By Terri Fannin.
Jim Crow and segregation
This is an integrated lesson plan that incorporates both eighth grade language arts and history. Using Internet research, literary analysis, and persuasive technique, students will practice reading and writing skills while analyzing the impact of Jim Crow Segregation on African Americans living in North Carolina and elsewhere.
Format: lesson plan (grade 8 English Language Arts and Social Studies)
By Burnetta Barton.
Learning about descriptive language through art
In this lesson, students will be introduced to haiku and using descriptive language. Students will discuss a work of art as a way to elicit this descriptive language.
Format: lesson plan (grade 3–4 Visual Arts Education and English Language Arts)
By Amanda Keller.