Hopefully, you’ve heard about the Helen Ruffin Reading Bowl. Because we enjoy the whole HRRB experience so much, we encourage you to start teams in your schools and share in the joy and excitement that coaching a team will surely bring to you and your school. The steps to sponsor a team are as follows:
- Visit the Helen Ruffin Reading Bowl web site, read the rules, and get the high school book list or the elementary and middle school book list. The elementary and middle schools will use the Georgia Book Award nominees. This list is available on the Helen Ruffin site as well.
- Identify funding sources for the team. You will need to purchase three or more sets of the books that you will read. If your school doesn’t already have one, you will need to purchase a quiz bowl/lockout device for your team to practice with. You may also need to have funds available for transportation. A team banner for the competition can help develop a team identity.
- Next, you will want to recruit your team and at least one assistant coach for meetings you can’t personally attend. You can have up to 10 members per team. If you sign up more than that number you may want to establish more teams and have an in-school competition. Your school may only send one team to the county competition. Two teams from each level — elementary, middle and high school — will advance to the regional competition.
- While reading the books, you and your team members should write questions about the books. The questions must be factual and verifiable in the texts. No interpretation or opinion questions are allowed. You may want to compile these questions into a notebook to practice for the competitions. (Tip: Write the answers with their page numbers for each question.)
- As soon as your books arrive, you should have meetings as often as needed to discuss the books.
- Competition in the school district, regional and state bowl will be conducted using a lockout device, also known as a buzzer system. A good option is the Quick Pro basic model for two teams of five participants, available for purchase from Patrick’s Press.