Information for Team Managers

Battle Briefing Information Presented January 11 2020

Team Manager Overview

Being a Battle of the Books team manager is a very important job.  The team manager helps the team work together by dividing up reading responsibilities, helping the team practice, and making Battle of the Books a fun, positive experience. 

We encourage you to attend the Battle Briefing in January with your team.  You will be able to see first-hand how Written and Oral Battles are conducted and have a chance to ask questions.

As the team manager, it is your responsibility to register your team at the Youth Services Desk. Team Registration forms are included in the Team Manager Packet, which will be available for pickup at the Youth Services desk starting the day of the booklist release, Sunday, December 15.  The completed form must be returned in person to the Youth Services Desk by 5:00pm on Sunday, January 19, 2020. Some schools have additional forms to be filled out, so also check with your principal, media staff, or school Battle Coordinator about what is required at your school.

A person can act as team manager for more than one team if they so choose.

When choosing a team name, remember that school names cannot be a part of the team name and that your team name will be listed exactly as it appears on the form.  Your team should also select an alternate name, since team names are given to the first team to submit the registration form to the Youth Services Desk, and your first choice may have already been taken. 

It is a hard, but true, fact of Battle that approximately half of the registered teams will qualify for the Second Written Battle, and only eight teams will have the chance to participate in Oral Battle Day.  An important part of Battle of the Books is having fun as a team, and there are many ways to accomplish this regardless of how far your team goes in the battles. 

We also encourage you and your team to attend the Championship Battle and the reception afterward, which the library hosts to celebrate all of the teams. 

The library staff deeply appreciates the hard work and commitment of the team managers who make Battle of the Books possible.


The following hints have been suggested by previous team managers. Please choose the ones you feel comfortable using.

Remember that reading should - first and foremost – be enjoyable, so keep your team’s interest up and the pressure off by planning fun activities related to the books.

  • Let your team members and their parents know what you expect of them in terms of reading and commitment. Have them acknowledge their agreement to these commitments by signing a permission slip.
  • Encourage each team member to read as many books as possible.  Some managers divide the books, making each team member responsible for certain books.
  • Make a chart with the book titles across the top and your team members’ names down the side.  As each member finishes a title, put a star in the appropriate spot.
  • Keep notes for all of the books with the main characters, the important events, the settings, etc. listed below each title.
  • As your team members read the books, have them write down questions and share them with other team members.
  • Let each member practice writing down the answers and giving out the answers orally.  Divide your team and have mock battles.  Give each member a chance to participate in these mock battles. Get your team into the habit of giving the author’s last name first and then the answer to the question.
  • Quiz the members periodically for authors’ last names.
  • Read some of the books yourself and discuss them with team members. 
  • As a team, plan to attend the Championship Battle and the reception after the battle.
  • Emphasize the fact that every participant is a winner.  It is important for your team members to learn to win and lose graciously.