Elementary Schools

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Students engaged

School Resources

Welcome to the RSS Code BusThe role of Horizons Unlimited as an Education Center has adapted to meet the educational needs of our local community and neighboring counties for over 50 years. Horizons Unlimited's strength comes from remaining focused on providing educational support and enrichment opportunities to all learners so they can become empowered citizens.

Remaining 2018-2019 Programs School Groups

3rd Grade

November 13 – January 18  

3/45 minute classes and a 25-minute planetarium show (Bag Lunch Required)

Portion Distortion – Healthy Eating– Shannon Ellsworth

3.NPA.1: Apply tools (MyPlate, Food Facts Label) to plan healthy nutrition and fitness.

3.NPA.1.2: Check the Food Facts Label to determine foods that are low in sugar and high in calcium

3.NPA.2.3: Recognize appropriate portion sizes of foods for most Americans

Lesson: Students will investigate portion distortion in America and how to make healthy lifestyle choices related to nutrition and exercise.  

Economics Arcade - Neil Pifer

3.E.1.1 Explain how location impacts supply and demand.

3.E.1.2 Explain how locations of regions and natural resources influence economic development (industries developed around natural resources, rivers and coastal towns). 

3.E.1.3 Explain why people become entrepreneurs. 

3.C&G.1.1 Summarize the historical development of local governments

Lesson: The makerspace will serve as an arcade where students will learn about the economic concepts of supply and demand, entrepreneurs, and how local governments decide on laws. 

Rolling Along Force and Motion– Diane Folk

3.P1.1 - Infer changes in speed or direction resulting from forces acting on an object. 

3.P.1.2 - Compare the relative speeds (faster or slower) of objects that travel the same distance in different amounts of time. 

3.P.1.3 - Explain the effect of Earth’s gravity on the motion of any object on or near the Earth.

Lesson: Rolling along will include hands-on activities to investigate how speed or direction are affected by differing forces and the effects of gravity will also be investigated in this experience.

Planetarium Show - Earth Moon and Sun 

3.E.1.1 Recognize that the earth is part of a system called the solar system that includes the sun (a star), planets, and manymoons and the earth is the third planet from the sun in our solar system.

5th grade

November 13 – January 18

Kyle Whisenant kyle.whisenant@rss.k12.nc.us  will coordinate visit times for each school.

 Cracking the Code on the RSS Coding Bus - Kyle Whisenant

5.H.1 Analyze the chronology key events in the United States. 

5.H.2 Understand the role of prominent figures in shaping the United States. 

ISTE Standards 5A-D Computational and Algorithmic Thinking

Lesson: Coding and using a cipher will be the avenue for exploring the Revolutionary War. Linking the Washington Spy Ring to key events of the time period and showing students how to code a program that can be used to translate another code will be the primary activity.

6th Grade

January 23-February 28

4/1 hour rotations

Day Program 8:00 am – 1:00 pm (Bag Lunch Required)

Ancient History Festival

Agriculture and Architecture– Shannon Ellsworth

6.H.2.3 Explain how innovation and/or technology transformed civilizations, societies and regions over time.

 6.C.1.1 Analyze how cultural expressions reflected the values of civilizations, societies and regions. 

Lesson:  Students will explore a variety of artistic traditions and how they are reflected in civilizations around the world over time.

Matter: Properties and Change – Diane Folk

6.P.2 Understand the structure, classifications and physical properties of matter.

6.P.2.1 Recognize that all matter is made up of atoms and atoms of the same element are all alike, but are different from the atoms of other elements.

6.P.2.2 Explain the effect of heat on the motion of atoms through a description of what happens to particles during a change in phase. 

6.P.2.3 Compare the physical properties of pure substances that are independent of the amount of matter present including density, melting point, boiling point, and solubility to properties that are dependent on the amount of matter present to include volume, mass and weight.

Lesson: Matter and its properties - How has science been an influence from ancient history to today in our daily lives as we have discovered more through the use of technology?

Ancient Greece - Constellation Storiesin the Planetarium– Neil Pifer

6.E.1.1 Explain how the relative motion and relative position of the sun, Earth and moon affect the seasons, tides, phases of the moon, and eclipses.

6.E.1.2 Explain why Earth sustains life while other planets do not based on their properties (including types of surface, atmosphere and gravitational force) and location to the Sun.

6.E.1.3 Summarize space exploration and the understandings gained from them.

Lesson:  Using the planetarium and an original star story, students will use a scientific tone in writing while also creatively composing star stories.  Students will use the app “peergrade.io” to evaluate the two types of writing and provide suggestions in an ongoing refining process.

Chariots, Carts, and Cash – Kyle Whisenant

6.H.2.1 Explain how invasions, conquests, and migrations affected various civilizations, societies and regions (e.g., Mongol invasion, The Crusades, the Peopling of the Americas and Alexander the Great).

6.H.2.3 Explain how innovation and/or technology transformed civilizations, societies and regions over time (e.g., agricultural technology, weaponry, transportation and communication).

Lesson:Trade between countries has influenced the development of the world more than you realize. Students will participate in a trading simulation based in the ancient world.

1st Grade

March 4 – April 12 

2/50 minute classes and a 20-minute planetarium show, no lunch needed

Art Viewing – Kyle Whisenant

1.G.2.1 Explain ways people change the environment (planting trees, recycling, cutting down trees, building homes, building streets, etc.).                                                                                                         

1.H.1.1 Explain how and why neighborhoods and communities change over time.                

Lesson: Step back in time to our 1848 one room schoolhouse and learn how art work can tell stories about our community.

StoryWalk/Nature Walk– Diane Folk

1.L1.1 - Recognize that plants and animals need air, water, light (plants only), space, food, and shelter and that these may be found in their environment.

1.L.1.2 - Give examples of how the needs of different plants and animals can be met by their environments in NC or different places throughout the world. 

1.L.1.3 - Summarize the ways that humans protect their environment and/or improve conditions for the growth of the plants and animals that live there (e.g. reuse or recycle projects to avoid littering)

1.L.2.1 - Summarize the basic needs of a variety of different plants (including air, water, nutrients, and light) for energy and growth.

1.L.2.2 - Summarize the basic needs of a variety of different animals (including air, water, and food) for energy and growth. 

Lesson: Students will explore the nature trail to recognize and observe examples of the needs of plants and animals as well as how those needs can be met. Participate in activities demonstrating the importance of our basic needs and protecting the environment. Closed toe shoes, required and long pants suggested.  

Mice on the Moon -Planetarium Show

1.E 1.1 Recognize differences in the features of the day and night sky and apparent movement of objects across the sky as observed from Earth.

1.E 1.2 Recognize patterns of observable changes in the Moon’s appearance from day to day.

Lesson: Enjoy the original night sky and the planetarium show “Mice and the Moon”.  Pip and Chip use astronomy savvy robots to explore the moon and beyond. 


2nd Grade

March 4 – April

2/50 minute classes and planetarium experience, no lunch required


Community Helpers/Economics– Shannon Ellsworth

2.C&G.1.1 Explain government services and their value to the community (libraries, schools, parks, etc)

2.C&G.2.1: Exemplify characteristics of good citizenship through historical figures and everyday citizens

Lesson: Students will explore community helpers and ways that historical figures and everyday citizens exemplify good citizenship.

Weather and Measurement - in the Makerspace- Neil Pifer

2. E 1.2 Summarize weather conditions using qualitative and quantitative measures to describe:

• Temperature                      • Wind direction                • Wind speed                        • Precipitation

2. E 1.3 Compare weather patterns that occur over time and relate observable patterns to time of day and time of year.

2. E 1.4 Recognize the tools that scientists use for observing, recording, and predicting weather changes from day to day and during the seasons.

Lesson: Using “magic” demonstrations in the planetarium, Mr. Neil will take you on a journey around the world and out to the solar system exploring the wonderful world of weather!


April 8 – May 29

HU Staff and RSS AIG Nurturing Team

Half Day Program, lunch required

The Horizons Unlimited and AIG Nurturing staff will provide hands-on, minds-on activities that offer opportunities for problem solving using manipulatives and robotics. Students will participate in Problem Based Learning experiences during their visit to Horizons Unlimited.

Sample Lessons

Going on a Bear Hunt

K.G.1.1 Use maps to locate places in the classroom, school and home.

K.G.1.2 Use globes and maps to locate land and water features.

K.G.1.3 Identify physical features (mountains, hills, rivers, lakes, roads, etc.). 

Lesson: Kindergarteners will explore geography skills based on the classic story, We’re Going On A Bear Hunt.  Students will create a hands-on map and then head outdoors for a map skills adventure at Horizons Unlimited.  Students should wear closed-toe shoes for this 

In My Backyard: Planetarium show involving kinesthetic dancing, singing, and counting

K.CC.5 Count to answer “how many?” questions about as many as 20 things arranged in a line, a rectangular array, or a circle, or as many as 10 things in a scattered configuration; given a number from 1–20, count out that many objects.

K.CP.1 Use choreographic principles, structures, and processes to create dances that communicate ideas, experiences, feelings, and images.

K.P.1 Understand the positions and motions of objects and organisms observed in the environment 

K.P.1.1 Compare the relative position of various objects observed in the classroom and outside using position words such as: in front of, behind, between, on top of, under, above, below and beside.

K.P.1.2 Give examples of different ways objects and organisms move (to include falling to the ground when dropped):

• Straight                        

• Zigzag

• Round and round 

• Back and forth

5thGrade Optional Program (School Pay)

Ecology Field Study

Horizons Unlimited Nature Trail

Self-guided* Deciduous Forest and Woodland Swamp ecology study to support NC Science Essential Standard 5.L.2 Understand the interdependence of plants and animals with their ecosystem. 

Contact Kathryn Ender (Kathyrn.Ender@rss.k12.nc.us) to schedule your visit.

*If a guide is needed, please contact Diane Folk (Diane.Folk@rss.k12.nc.us) to schedule your visit there will be a $3.00 per student charge.

7th Grade

Coding Bus Visit

(All RSS Middle Schools*/Outside RSS call 704-639-3004 for scheduling and pricing)

 Kyle Whisenant kyle.whisneant.rss.k12.nc.us will be contacting each RSS middle school to arrange a visit from the new RSS Coding Bus. *The first visit from the bus is covered through Horizons Unlimited funding.

If you have a special request for the coding bus to make additional visits, please arrange these by contacting Amy Pruitt amy.pruitt@rss.k12.nc.us  or Kyle Whisenant kyle.whisenant@rss.k12.nc.usfor more information and availability.