• Approximately 1,500 black bears live in the national park.

    Great Smoky Mountains

    National Park NC,TN

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  • Trail Advisory

    Several trails in the park are temporarily closed. Please check the "Backcountry Facilities" section of the Temporary Road and Facilities Closures page for further details. More »

Curriculum Materials

We offer a variety of free, ranger-led, curriculum-based programs that are correlated to North Carolina and Tennessee state learning standards. Our education programs are crafted for particular grade levels and their specific state standards. Please visit the pages below for information on program locations, details on program themes and activities, and downloadable lesson plans.

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North Carolina Elementary North Carolina Middle North Carolina High

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  • Great Smoky Mountains National Park

    Students as Scientists: Salamander Research Preparation (North Carolina Middle School)

    Students as Scientists: Salamander Research Preparation (North Carolina Middle School)

    The Great Smoky Mountains are known as the “Salamander Capital of the World!” Salamanders are an especially abundant and diverse group in the park. Researchers use salamanders as a bio-indicator to help assess the health of our forests threatened by air pollution and impacts from a changing climate. This unit is broken into three parts. This unit involves a trip to the park and is accompanied by a preparation activity and a wrap-up activity. This is the field preparation activity of the unit.

Did You Know?

Great Horned Owls can be heard most often in January and February

More than 240 species of birds have been found in the park. Sixty species are year-round residents. Nearly 120 species breed in the park, including 52 species from the neo-tropics. Many other species use the park as an important stopover and foraging area during their semiannual migration. More...