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    Great Smoky Mountains

    National Park NC,TN

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Tennessee Elementary School

3rd grade along Little River

These programs challenge students with hands-on learning experiences that are correlated with Tennessee curriculum standards. Each program enhances classroom learning by using the park's cultural and natural resources as teaching tools. Students make real-world connections with science and history, while having fun at the same time! Watch a video overview.

All programs are free. To register for a program, call 865-436-1258 or email us. Please fax (865-436-1307) us your completed reservation form or attach it to your email to formalize your program request.

For a complete listing of all our Tennessee elementary grade programs, please download our program flyer. Program lesson plans containing pre and post-visit activities and on-site program descriptions are linked below.

Program Title Grade Location Season
Explore With Your Senses K Sugarlands, Cades Cove Spring/Fall
Wild Habitats 1 Sugarlands, Cades Cove Spring/Fall
History and Culture 2 Porters Flat, Metcalf Bottoms, Cades Cove Spring/Fall
Habitat Diversity 3 Metcalf Bottoms, Cosby Spring/Fall

Resource Managers
and Science

Mountain Farm Museum

4


4

Chimneys and Cosby Picnic Areas, Cades Cove


Cades Cove

Spring/Fall


Spring/Fall

Interdependence

Soil and Terrestrial Invertebrate Monitoring

5

5

Sugarlands Visitor Center, Newfound Gap, Look Rock, Clingmans Dome

Twin Creek Science and Education Center (near Gatlinburg, TN)

Spring/Fall

Spring/Fall

 
school students in a PaC program

Program Video: This video highlights the main activities and lessons for elementary grade levels, showcases the variety of educational offerings and provides a sense of program location. Each of the featured programs has a complete downloadable lesson plan on this site.

 
kindergarten tactile activity

Explore with Your Senses! (Kindergarten)
Students will use their senses to learn about his special protected national park. Students will learn about he history and wildlife of Great Smoky Mountains National Park.
Locations: 1/4 mile from Sugarlands Visitor Center, Cades Cove near the campground
Tennessee State Standards:
Embedded Inquiry Inqs 1, 2 ,3 ,4 , 5
Embedded Technology and Engineering GLE 0007.T/E/1 Interdependence GLE 0007.2.1
The Earth 0007.7.2
Matter GLE 0007.9.1

Lesson Plan (2.2 MB)

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1st grade at waterfall

Wild Habitats (First grade)
Students examine the characteristics of animal groups and identify their interdependence. A short nature walk allows students to investigate habitats where plants and animals live.
Locations: Sugarlands Visitor Center, Cades Cove picnic area
Tennessee State Standards:
Cells GLE 0107.1.1
Interdependence GLE 0107.2.1
Flow of Matter and Energy GLE 0107.3.1
Biodiversity and Change GLE 0107.5.1

Lesson Plan (2.1MB)

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2nd Graders use a Crosscut Saw

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History and Culture (Second grade)
Students use a cross cut saw to recreate the experience of building a log home, learn how the forest was a supermarket and a drugstore and visit some structures that were part of the 1800's mountain community. Program includes a ranger-led walk where students look for clues of how humans used the environment.
Locations: Porters Flat (near Big Greenbrier), Elijah Oliver Home in Cades Cove, Metcalf Bottoms
Tennessee State Standards:
Culture Learning Expectations: 1.01, 1.02
Economics Learning Expectations 2.01
Geography Learning Expectations 3.02
History Learning Expectations 5.01, 5.02

Lesson Plan (3.8 MB)

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Soil properties activity

Habitat Diversity (Third grade)
Students will discover how specific animals compete and survive in a forest or stream habitat. Students will learn how complex a food chain can be in relation to surrounding environmental factors.
Locations: Metcalf Bottoms Picnic Area, Cosby Picnic area
Tennessee State Standards:
Embedded Inquiry GLE 0307 Inqs 1,2,4,5, 6
Embedded Technology and Engineering GLE 0307.T/E.1, 2, 3, 4 Interdependence GLE 0307.2.1, 2
Flow of Matter and Energy GLE 0307.3.1
Biodiversity and Change GLE 0307.5.1, 2

Lesson Plan (2.5 MB)

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salamander survey

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Resource Managers and Science (Fourth grade)
Students investigate the role that National Park rangers play in managing natural resources.The process and scientific method of field biology are demostrated through the studies of herpetology and ichthyology.
Location: Chimneys picnic area, Cosby Picnic Area and Cades Cove
Tennessee State Standards:
Embedded Inquiry GLE 0407.Inqs. 1,2,3,4,5,6
Embedded Technology and Engineering GLE 0407.T/E.1, 2,3,4
Interdependence GLE 0407.2.1
Heredity GLE 0407.4.1, GLE 0407.4.2

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Mountain Farm Museum (Fourth Grade)
Students study rural life in the late 1800's by working in a blacksmith shop, learning about mountain traditions and studying artifacts. Through this exposure, students learn about the challenges and rewards of preserving and protecting our heritage and public spaces.
Location: Cades Cove
Tennessee State Standards:
Culture 4.1.01, 1.04
Ecomonics 4.2.01, 2.03, 2.04
Geography 4.3.04
History 4.5.12

Mountain Farm Museum Lesson Plan pdf (5.8 MB)

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regional air pollution

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Interdependence (Fifth grade)
Students will be introduced to the interdependence between the climate and biodiversity of Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Program will include various ways to discover how life cycles work together to make a sustainable ecosystem.
Location: Newfound Gap, Sugarlands Visitor Center, Look Rock
Tennessee State Standards:
Embedded Inquiry GLE 0507.Inqs. 1,3,4,5,6
Embedded Technology and Engineering GLE 0507.T/E.1,2,3,4
Flow of Matter and Energy GLE 0507.3.1
Interdependence GLE 0507.2.1, 2,3

Interdependence Lesson Plan (290 KB)

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Soil and Terrestrial Invertebrate Monitoring (Fifth Grade)
Students inventory the macroinvertebrates of the deciduous forest using scientific methods. In small teams, the class will analyze soil properties and recognize the interdependence of abiotic and biotic factors.
Location: Twin Creek Science and Education Center (near Gatlinburg)
Tennessee State Standards:
Embedded inquiry GLE 0507 Inq.1, 2, 3, 4, 5
Embedded Technology and Engineering GLE 0507.T/E.1, 2, 3, 4
Interdependence GLE 0507.2.1
Biodiversity and Change GLE 0507.5.1

Soil and Terrestrial Invertebrate Monitoring Lesson Plan (558 KB)

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Did You Know?

An experimental program to reintroduce elk to the park was begun in 2001.

An experimental program to reintroduce elk to the park was begun in 2001. Elk once roamed the Smokies, but were eliminated from the region in the mid 1800s by over-hunting and loss of habitat. Other animals successfully reintroduced to the park include river otters and barn owls. More...