When I tell people I work at Scholastic, by far the most common response I get goes something like this:
“Like the flyers I used to get in elementary school? I loved those!!”
They know those too, but it’s Scholastic Book Clubs
they want to linger on. “I used to get so excited when my teacher would hand out the colorful flyers!” “I remember carrying bags full of change to school to give to my teachers.” “I used to love Book Day!”
So have millions of kids for 60 years now.
The good news today is Scholastic Book Clubs is still growing — and we think some recent changes will make the experience even better for students, teachers and parents for years to come.
I’ll be posting about Book Clubs occasionally over the next few months, but I wanted to mention today what I think is the most exciting recent change for Clubs — online ordering
. We call it COOL, which stands for “Clubs Ordering OnLine,” and it’s already getting a fair bit of attention
The power of the Web has allowed Book Clubs to offer more books through a system that is more user-friendly and provides far more information about each title, series and author. Teachers give parents a username and password, and parents can go online with their kids, browse flyers and make orders with a credit card. There are plenty of other great features, including a way for teachers to make book recommendations to parents on the system and create wish lists. Parents can also order anytime from some of the most popular book series — like Harry Potter, Captain Underpants and Clifford the Big Red Dog.
The colorful flyers haven’t gone away, and many teachers still prefer the old system. However, more than half of all Book Clubs orders are now received online at Scholastic. The orders still go through the teacher, teachers earn valuable bonus points they can use to get free books and classroom materials, and the books are still delivered to the schools. Most importantly, the books are still carefully chosen by editors at Scholastic, and the prices are kept low.
We’d love to hear your memories of Scholastic Book Clubs from when you were a kid! And if you’re a current Clubs parent, teacher or student, are you using COOL? What do you think?