Frequently Asked Questions


What is Open Up Resources?

We are a nonprofit developing the highest quality full-course curricula available to districts, provided for free as Open Educational Resources (OER) to promote instructional equity. We partner with the country’s foremost materials experts to develop superb core programs and deliver essential implementation support, from professional development to printing. Our mission is to provide students and educators with equal access to rigorous, standards-aligned core materials.

What does Open Up Resources provide?

We develop and publish superb core programs designed for full-course use, then we support implementations with high-quality professional development and flexible print-as-a-service options for non-1:1 school districts.

Are your curricula core programs or supplements?

Our materials are designed for full-course use as a core program to support an aligned, coherent progression within and across grades.

What is Open Up Resource’s role in curriculum development?

First, we tap expert authors to create core programs. Then, we check the authored materials against key rubrics, forge the curricula through large-scale district betas, publish the curricula as OER, and provide full-service implementation support, from PD to printing.

What grades levels and subjects do you cover?

For the 2017–18 school year, Open Up Resources will offer a middle school math curriculum (grades 6–8) and a K–5 ELA curriculum. We plan to expand our offerings to more grade bands and subjects over time.

What are Open Educational Resources (OER)?

Here’s a brief definition of OER from OER Commons: “Open Educational Resources are teaching and learning materials that you may freely use and reuse, without charge. OER often have a Creative Commons [CC] or GNU license that state specifically how the material may be used, reused, adapted, and shared.” Educators use OER to supplement and/or supplant curricula.

How is Open Up Resources curricula OER?

Our content is published with a CC-BY license, which means others distribute, remix, tweak, and build upon our work, as long as they credit the authors for the original creation.

Why are you publishing your core programs for free as OER?

Publishing our core programs as OER supports our organization’s commitment to social justice. We believe all students deserve a high-quality, equitable education; providing our curricula for free as OER ensures maximum impact and easier adoptions for districts across the country. As a nonprofit, our priority is wide-scale adoption of high-quality core programs that promote instructional equity.


To support as many districts as possible, including those who do not have a 1:1 digitial program in place, we offer low-cost print options for districts who wish to use hard-copy editions of our curricula.


We also acknowledge that the most essential ingredient to a successful implementation is a high-quality professional development support system—we provide for a reasonable price a suite of high-quality professional development and implementation support services.

What are your PD options?

Open Up Resources offers ongoing professional development to school systems implementing its curricula. We support teachers making important shifts in instructional models, building their capacity while ensuring success leveraging our curriculum to improve student outcomes. 


Please refer to the curricula-specific FAQs for detailed information on our PD suites.

What are your print options?

We offer full-service printing of all our student-facing materials. As a nonprofit, we have negotiated exceptional rates with trustworthy printers.


Our student-facing math materials are delivered in unit-level volumes. Each student’s full course consists of 9 soft-cover, perfect-bound books, formatted to capture their written responses to the included lessons.

Are districts required to print student materials?

Not at all! We meet you where you are on the digital continuum:

  • Paperless editions for 1:1 classrooms
  • Low-cost print and shipping options available for non-digital classrooms
  • Integrated with common Learning Management Systems and Microsoft OneNote

What are the hardware/software requirements for using your curricula?

Our curricula are accessible on any device via your web browser, and we are compatible with all recent versions of Safari, Firefox, Chrome, and Internet Explorer.

Do you sync with my Learning Management System (LMS)?

There’s a good chance we do! We integrate with all major LMS systems. Let us know which one you’re using and we’ll discuss our integration.


Who authored Open Up Resources Middle School Math curriculum?

Our curriculum is authored by Illustrative Mathematics, founded by noted mathematician and standards author Bill McCallum. The Illustrative Mathematics team has extensive experience with materials creation, based on years of providing free K–12 supplemental materials and resources. Learn more.

What materials are included “in the box”?

Our program comes complete with:

  • Student Materials (digital and print)
  • Teacher Materials (including unit plans, lesson plans, digital and print assessments, and embedded professional learning)
  • Scope & Sequence
  • Supports for ELLs
  • Supports for students with disabilities
  • Family Resources

How many units, lessons, and activities per grade?

Grades are broken up into units, and each unit comprises lessons:

  • Grade 6: 9 units, approximately 130 lessons
  • Grade 7: 9 units, approximately 130 lessons
  • Grade 8: 9 units, approximately 120 lessons

Every lesson includes 2–4 activities.

How long is each lesson designed for?

Each lesson is designed for a 50-min period, and each lesson contains 2–4 activities.

Are the activities aligned to the standards?

The lessons are aligned to the standards and thus so are the practice problems.  A lesson is intended to be a sequence of activities that cumulatively address the aligned standards.

What assessments are included in the materials?

The following assessments are included in every unit:

  • Pre-unit diagnostic assessments
  • Embedded formative assessments
  • Practice problems
  • End-of-unit summative assessments

Longer units also have mid-unit assessments.

Can teachers edit the assessments?

Yes! Our curricula carry a CC-BY license, which means others distribute, remix, tweak, and build upon our work—including assessments—as long as they credit the authors for the original creation.

What type of PD accompanies the curriculum?

Support for teachers and district teams is an essential success factor. The student-centered classroom approach—for which our curriculum was designed—represents an impactful practice shift.


PD suite highlights:

  • Rooted in best practices.
  • Developed by the curriculum authors to ensure a direct connection to the materials.
  • Built around the 5 Practices for Orchestrating Productive Mathematics Discussions, which promotes student communication and the development of problem solving and reasoning skills.
  • Customized to meet the schedule and delivery needs of the district.
  • Multi-pronged approach to continuous professional learning:
    • On-site: Learn the themes, routines, practices, and design of the materials.
    • Curriculum-embedded: Access and leverage built-in supports.
    • Remote-based: Connect directly to curriculum authors and content experts.
    • Peer-supported: Activate PLCs to build capacity among educators.

Do you integrate with any math technologies (i.e., Desmos)?

Yes, digital and online materials include GeoGebra and Desmos applets.

Why are there units dedicated to supporting work of the grade?

The supporting work of the grade provides students with more opportunity to solidify conceptual understanding and build fluency for the major work of the grade. For example, Unit 1 in sixth grade is Area and Surface Area, which is supporting work of the grade. This unit reviews arithmetic and provides a context and application for work in Units 4 and 5, Operations and Fractions.

Do you have any resources for families?

Yes! Our curriculum includes Family Materials for each unit, which describe in plain language the big ideas students will be encountering. Family resources provide an overview mathematics your child is learning, detail what to expect as the learning deepens, and offer questions that promote conversation around the math.