The Physics and Astronomy Department of Appalachian State University acquired a Nanosurf Easyscan 2 system in the Fall of 2008 with funds from an NSF MRI award (DMR 0821124). We have used this AFM in over a dozen outreach activities for middle and high school students. We also have incorporated the AFM into several of our college courses, including an overview course on microscopy, a first-year seminar course on nanotechnology, and a senior-level lab course for physics students. We have learned from our outreach and teaching experience that introducing AFM to students excites them about nanoscience and nanotechnology and provides an important opportunity for implementing experiential learning in the classroom. Several principles are reinforced by having the students learn to operate the microscope and acquire images themselves. When students take ownership of acquiring AFM data during sample analysis and are able to take with them a digital file or print out the imaging results, it allows them to share what they learned with their peers and family. This learning cycle, from abstract conceptualization to concrete experience, has proven to be an effective pedagogy for students of all ages. To improve our outreach and teaching activities, we have developed several new learning modules for AFM, and we share one physics-based module here.