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Welcome, Amplify ELA families!

Welcome to the Amplify ELA Caregiver hub. We are here to support you and your child with all things Amplify!

Para acceder a este sitio en español haga clic aquí.

Welcome, Amplify ELA families!

Welcome to the Amplify ELA Caregiver hub. We are here to support you and your child with all things Amplify!

Para acceder a este sitio en español haga clic aquí.

Back-to-school night with Amplify ELA

Would you like to learn more about Amplify ELA? We hosted our own back-to-school night for caregivers to provide an overview of the program your student is using at home.

Click here to watch the recording

What is Amplify ELA?

Amplify ELA helps kids in grades 6–8 read and understand complex texts, encouraging them to grapple with interesting ideas and find relevance for themselves. Amplify ELA is a “blended” program that includes both digital and print materials, as well as a print-only version. Students using Amplify ELA read text passages closely, interpret what they find, discuss their thinking with peers, and develop their ideas in writing. The lesson structure is easy to follow, but flexible enough to allow for a variety of learning experiences and varied enough to keep students engaged. 

Features include:

  • Functionality that allows individual students to work at their own level while also being challenged appropriately
  • Built-in tools allowing teachers to track and respond to student work
  • The digital Amplify Library, containing more than 700 downloadable full-length fiction and non-fiction books
  • The Vocab App that uses game-like activities to help students master key words from the program’s texts. (Students using print materials will see key words highlighted.)
  • Independent writing assignments called Solos, available on mobile devices

Getting started

How you can support the child in your care

  • If possible, read with your child daily; even 15 minutes of reading together each day can make a huge impact. You can read aloud sections of the text together—many middle grade students enjoy performing sections of dialogue by taking on the role of a character in a play, or adding some dramatic flair to a poem with which they are working. If your child struggles with reading aloud, you might try reading the text to them with expression, then having them read it back to you. For additional practice, there are an array of fluency activities in the program’s Flex Days. Ask your child to help you find this activity.
  • Find moments to discuss what they are reading and discovering. Examples of questions you could ask: What stood out to you from what you read today? Were any sentences or words confusing? What was most surprising? What do you think the writer was trying to communicate? Do you agree with the writer’s ideas or descriptions? What connections can you make between what you are reading and your own life or other issues?
  • Listen to your child read their written responses or have them share with a friend over the phone or using the video chatting app of their choice. 
  • Browse the Amplify Library with your child to find independent books they’ll enjoy and be able to read fluently.
  • We recommend reviewing this Protecting Kids Online article by the Federal Trade Commission addressing digital safety.

Downloading texts from the Amplify Library

In the event that your home doesn’t have continuous internet access, we encourage you to download the core texts from the Amplify Library ahead of time. Please follow these steps to download a text:

1. Navigate to the Global Navigation Menu in the top-left corner of your screen (the three horizontal lines). The Global Navigation Menu will then appear with a list of apps. 

2. Find the Amplify Library app and click on it—the Amplify Library will now appear in a new tab.

3. If prompted, follow the directions to set up a pin for the Amplify Library; otherwise, proceed to the next step.

4. In the top-center-right corner of your screen, search for the book you would like to download. Example: The Secret of the Yellow Death: A True Story of Medical Sleuthing.

5. Now find the button that says Download.

6. Click the Download button to make sure you can access this book even when you have no internet access.

To retrieve your downloaded texts: 

  1. In the Amplify Library app, click the My Library drop-down in the top-left corner.
  2. Select Downloaded. 
  3. Choose the text you wish to read from all of your pre-downloaded texts.

Materials overview

Your child can access Amplify ELA’s digital curriculum at home if they’re unable to attend school and have internet access. Their teacher will provide login information. 

For student support in navigating the digital platform, see the Digital navigation guide for students.

Not every school will operate the same way, but students attending schools that have both the print and digital editions of the program will likely have the following print materials at home. In this case, students without access to devices or internet can continue to complete key reading and writing assignments using the print Student Editions and student Writing Journals. 

  • Student Edition: Includes all of the readings and activities necessary for instruction throughout the year. Students can read the selections both digitally and in print throughout the year, annotating in either format. The lessons in the print Student Edition reflect each digital lesson, but have been modified to work effectively in print. 
  • Writing Journals: Where students respond to Writing Prompts and complete other written assignments. 

Teachers can also access, print, and mail student Novel Guides for up to 12 commonly taught novels. Six of these novels are available in the Amplify Library, and most should be available in a public library. 

Unit overviews

  • Grade 6 units
    • Unit 6A Dahl & Narrative
      • Students begin with narrative writing to quickly boost their writing production, to learn the foundational skill of focus, and to become comfortable with key classroom habits and routines they will use all year. Students then apply their new observational focus to some lively readings from Roald Dahl’s memoir “Boy” and learn how to work closely with textual evidence.
    • Unit 6B Mysteries & Investigations
      • Students read like an investigator to embark on a multi-genre study into the mesmerizing world of scientific and investigative sleuthing. At the end of the unit, students write an essay explaining which trait is most useful to problem-solving investigators.
    • Unit 6C The Chocolate Collection
      • The Aztecs used it as currency. Robert Falcon Scott took it to the Antarctic. The Nazis made it into a bomb designed to kill Churchill. The 3,700-year-long history of chocolate is full of twists and turns, making it a rich and rewarding research topic. In this unit, students explore primary documents and conduct independent research to better understand the strange and wonderful range of roles that chocolate has played for centuries around the world.
    • Unit 6D The Greeks
      • Greek myths help us understand not only ancient Greek culture but also the world around us and our role in it. Drawing on the routines and skills established in previous units, these lessons ask students to move from considering the state of a single person—themselves or a character—to contemplating broader questions concerning the role people play in the world and the communities they inhabit within it.
    • Unit 6E Summer of Mariposas
      • The borderlands between the United States and Mexico are the place of legends, both true and fictional. Summer of the Mariposas, by Guadalupe Garcia McCall, plants a retelling of the Odyssey into this setting, launching five sisters on an adventure into a world of heroes and evil-doers derived from Aztec myths and Latino legends. At the same time, the journey helps the sisters reconcile the dissolution of their parents’ marriage and find a new strength in their identity as sisters, daughters and their connection to an Aztec lineage. In this unit, students consider how McCall uses the structure of the hero’s journey to create a vibrant story of adventure, and how she adapts the tale to celebrate girl power, her Latino heritage, and a larger definition of family. Students also have the opportunity to compare these girls’ fictional journey into Mexico to a description of one boy’s true journey into the United States.
    • Unit 6F The Titanic Collection
      • Learn how to tell the difference among primary, secondary, and tertiary sources; determine if a given source is reliable; and understand the ethical uses of information. Students construct their own research questions and explore the internet for answers. They take on the role of a passenger from the Titanic’s manifest and consider gender and class issues as they research and write narrative accounts from the point of view of their passengers.
  • Grade 7 Units
    • Unit 7A Red Scarf Girl & Narrative
      • This is a highly engaging memoir of a young girl growing up in China during the Cultural Revolution. Students will quickly learn the history and politics of this tumultuous period by focusing on the story of a young woman living through the upheaval. As students follow her journey through a world turned upside down, they will track the changes in her feelings and motivations over time.
    • Unit 7B Character & Conflict
      • By reading Raisin in the Sun and Sucker, students explore how people facing hardships can inflict unintentional harm on the people around them. The two narratives work together to provide opportunities for students to analyze characters’ responses to conflict and the author’s development of ideas over the course of a piece of fiction.
    • Unit 7C Brain Science
      • Could you survive an iron rod through your skull? Phineas Gage did, and his gruesome-but-true story allows students to build background information and analyze other informational texts, including the contemporary The Man Who Mistook His Wife For A Hat and the obviously relevant Demystifying the Adolescent Brain.
    • Unit 7D Poetry & Poe
      • Poe’s texts always offer so much to notice, decipher, talk about—and creep us out. Since things are not always what they seem, students use close reading skills to question whether they should believe what Poe’s narrator is telling them…or not.
    • Unit 7E The Frida & Diego Collection
      • Mexico’s most famous and provocative artists, Diego Rivera and Frida Kahlo, were an extraordinary couple who lived in extraordinary times. They were soul mates and complete opposites. The multifaceted lives and work of Diego Rivera and Frida Kahlo offer students a rich and fascinating subject, as they examine primary source documents and conduct independent research.
    • Unit 7F The Gold Rush Collection
      • Students choose from a large collection of primary and secondary sources to learn about the wide diversity of people who took part in the California Gold Rush.
  • Grade 8 Units
    • Unit 8A Perspectives & Narrative
      • This unit aims to teach students to read like writers. They practice paying attention to the craft of writing: to the moves a good writer makes to shape the way we see a scene or feel about a character—to stir us up, or surprise us, or leave us wondering what will happen next. Students closely read examples of rich, layered narrative nonfiction, analyze the techniques each author uses to make their writing resonate, and practice applying these techniques to their own narrative writing.
    • Unit 8B Liberty & Equality
      • We look at the words of a range of creators—from poet Walt Whitman to abolitionist Frederick Douglass to President Abraham Lincoln—to see how their writing contributed to extreme shifts in social organization: a whole new concept of what it means for people to be considered “equal.”
    • Unit 8C Science & Science Fiction
      • Students read Gris Grimly’s Frankenstein, a graphic novel that adds captivating illustrations to an abridgment of the 1818 edition of Mary Shelley’s book. Paired with Shelley’s text, Grimly’s haunting and—at times horrific—representations of Frankenstein’s creature push students to wrestle with some of the text’s central themes: the source of humanity and the root of evil. Then they write an essay in which, after arguing both sides of the question, students determine whether or not Frankenstein’s creature should ultimately be considered human.
    • Unit 8D Shakespeare’s Romeo & Juliet
      • Romeo and Juliet combines romance with action, offering a wide range of themes and scenes for students to read about and act out. Your middle schoolers are at the right age to identify with the lovers’ strong feelings—and also old enough to think critically about the choices Romeo and Juliet make.
    • Unit 8E Holocaust: Memory & Meaning
      • This unit uses a range of primary source articles, images, and videos, as well as literary nonfiction and graphic nonfiction, to study what made possible the atrocities of the Holocaust. Students will investigate how propaganda was generated and employed to create a political environment that ultimately corrupted a society. The Olympics are seen through the lens of an international propaganda campaign, providing cover for Nazis to begin eliminating non-Aryans from their culture. The final sub-unit examines the outcomes of Nazi doctrine and the impact on Jewish victims and survivors.
    • Unit 8F The Space Race Collection
      • Students use the internet as they put their research and close-reading skills to the test, distinguishing between reliable sources and unreliable ones.

Additional activities

  • Quests. You may notice your student working with peers on the same interactive project over several days, trying to solve a mystery or explain a historical event. That’s what happens if a teacher assigns a Quest: an in-depth week-long exploration that requires collaboration and deepens engagement with texts and topics.
  • Vocab App. The Vocab App helps students master vocabulary words through game-like activities that challenge students to think through morphology, analogy, and synonyms/antonyms, and to decipher meaning through context.

Where to go for help

Whether you have questions about your technology or want to know more about the program, Amplify’s Support Team is here to help!

Contact Support via telephone at (833) 97-Care-8 (833-972-2738) or caregiver@amplify.com.

Our support hours are Monday – Friday, 7 a.m. – 10 p.m. EDT, and Saturday – Sunday from 10 a.m. – 6 p.m. EDT.