Learning Upgrade offers differentiated, standards-based instruction featuring engaging online lessons, videos, and music

App of the Week
Formats: Web-based


What does it help with?

Learning Upgrade helps English learners, special needs students, and Title 1 students meet standards both in school and at home through continuously tracked, differentiated, and formative assessments.

What grade and age range?

Grades K-12 and adult literacy

Is this core/supplemental/special needs/extra-curricular/professional development or what?

Supplemental and special needs/English learner instruction

What subject, topic, what standards is it mapped to?

ELA and Math, aligned to Common Core, ELD, state standards

What lesson time does it use?

Learning Upgrade can be used for whole-class interactive lessons as part of math or ELA sessions, and individually in class, after school, or at home. 

What is the pricing model?

We offer a free license for 20 students per school. Otherwise, it’s $30 per student license for access to all lessons for one school year or $7,500 per school for an annual license that covers all students.

Are there services around it?

Learning Upgrade provides support for teachers as well as PD.

What makes it unique?

Courses feature original songs, video, and games to engage students in a well-designed sequence of lessons designed to quickly fill in gaps and bring students up to proficiency. Whereas other programs have simple assessments with little direct feedback, Learning Upgrade games have rich interaction with voice and animation to explain every missed question. The differentiated program allows students to work at their own pace, while achieving mastery.

A description of the characteristics—how is it designed for user interface, user experience?  What instructional design principles are at work here?

Learning Upgrade courses address all standards for one subject within a grade level. Students must demonstrate mastery in one lesson to move on, and review lessons to prove overall mastery to earn a Gold certificate in the overall course. The design of each lesson incorporates songs, animated video, games, and immediate feedback to ensure a student masters a specific topic. The design of the entire course, through visual maps, audio encouragement, and certificates, ensures that a student is motivated to finish every level to mastery.


A teacher’s review:

Tamara Sturak

Computer Teacher, Manzanita Community School

“Most classes at Manzanita use Learning Upgrade once or twice a week for 30–45 minutes. After eight years with Learning Upgrade, we have found the combination of sound and pictures help non-English-speaking students learn English more quickly. Many teachers use Learning Upgrade instead of worksheets for individual work time. The lessons are differentiated, more engaging, and have proven to increase Lexile levels.

“ELL students at the school made significant gains in reading on the Lexile Framework for Reading based on pre- and post-testing. One second-grade ELL student worked 22.2 hours to earn her Gold certificate and gained 308 Lexile points. This ranked as the second-highest growth in her class among all students, not just ELL students. A fourth-grade ELL student went from 0 to 219 after completing English Upgrade in nine hours. And eight of our third-grade ELL students who completed a Learning Upgrade reading course gained an average of 167 Lexile points.”

For more information visit Learning Upgrade.

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