Back to school terrorMy middle guy came to me today with a look of horror on his face. Concerned, I asked him what was wrong. He responded, with a look I could only describe as devastated: “I just saw a back to school commercial. Didn’t summer just begin??”

Although it does feel as though the lazy days of summer should go on endlessly, it’s hard to ignore that the fevered pace of back to school really is just around the corner.

With that in mind, we thought we’d help you get ready with a handy checklist of things you might want to do to start your year fresh on the Reading Rewards reading program.

  1. Did you know we rolled out some major updates to our site back in May? For an overview of how things have changed for our readers, click here. We will put together an overview video for Group Administrators shortly.
  2. Log in to your administrator account, and create a new group for your new school year! To do this, go to Reading Circle >> Manage Groups. Click on the Create Group button. We have thousands of groups set up on our site now, so please try and use as unique a name as possible! For example, Ms. Smith, Gardenview School, Rm. 101, 2013-2014. This will make it easier for your students to find you.
  3. If your students are new to Reading Rewards, you have 2 options:
    1. You can create accounts for them yourself via the Manage Accounts option. You can then send them home with a Parent Introduction letter that you will see as an option on the left of your Manage Groups or Manage Accounts screen. Make sure you select the right Introduction letter template (accounts created)
    2. Alternatively, you can get your students to sign up on their own from home, and join your group. To help them out, print off the other version of our Parent Introduction letter, where it tells them the name of your group, how to find it, and what the security code is. This template is also available from the ‘Parent Introduction’ link.
  4. If your students already have accounts, simply print off the Parent Introduction letter that contains the name of your group, security code,  as well as instructions on how to join it. They will be able to join your new group on their own.

And that’s it! Your new reading group is ready to go! If you want to set up rewards for your readers, don’t forget to do so via the Manage Rewards option.

Also, our program works best when parents get involved. Please feel free to encourage your student’s parents to participate as well! By signing up for a parent account, they will be able to create their own groups, connect to their children and set up their own rewards.

Finally, we do a lot of our communicating on our Facebook page, as well as Twitter (@ReadingRewards). If you use any of these platforms, we hope you’ll join the conversation!

We wish you all a great end to the summer, and good luck with your back to school efforts. We hope you all have an absolutely wonderful 2013-2014!!

Happy Reading,

Michelle and Carole