Back to School VIRTUALLY!

Get started with the right resources and tutorials.

Where Do I Start???

Are you wondering, "where do I start?" Well, virtual learning is full of online programs and resources that enhances virtual live instruction. To avoid feeling completely lost, start with exploring the available resources that we'll be using during virtual learning. Below are a few resources that you should explore first!

Virtual Resources


myBackpack is a "one-stop-shopping" portal for all your frequently-used school files and apps!

All students and staff can access their favorite websites and school applications from any device anywhere.

Once logged in, myBackpack acts as a single sign-on so you do not have to remember all the different web addresses and passwords for your favorite school resources.

Access myBackpack

  • Through an internet connection navigate to
  • Enter the APS student username (username) and lunch id (password)
  • The myBackpack screen will load with your username and password

myBackpack Tutorials:

- Accessing myBackpack

- eBooks

- AR


Zoom is a cloud-based video communications app that allows you to set up virtual video and audio conferencing, webinars, live chats, screen-sharing, and other collaborative capabilities. This is the main platform teachers will use for live instruction. It's best if the app is downloaded to you device (phone, computer, iPad, etc) for easy access. Each teacher has their own zoom links that will send students directly to their virtual classrooms daily. Make sure that your contact information is updated with the school and look out for communications from THES staff weekly.

Access to Zoom

- - To sign up and download

- Students can access Zoom via myBackpack

Zoom Tutorials:

Zoom for studnets


Otus is an educational learning management system used as a tool to assign and receive independent assignments, assessments and projects. Students will use this platform weekly on synchronous and asynchronous days.

Access Otus:

Students can access Otus via myBackpack or

Otus Tutorials:

To learn more about Otus, visit our Distance Learning page on the THES website.


Nearpod is a student engagement platform that teachers can use to create presentations such as, Quiz's, Polls, Videos, Images, Drawing-Boards, Web Content and more. This resource can be used during live instruction and for independent student assignments.

Access Nearpod:

Access Lessons Nearpod:

Students will need a code from their teachers to access lessons on Nearpod.

Nearpod Tutorial:

Nearpod for students


Renaissance myON Reader is a student-centered, personalized literacy environment that gives students access to more than 6,000 enhanced digital books. Titles are dynamically matched to each individual student’s interests, grade and Lexile® reading level. Combined with a suite of close reading tools and embedded supports, myON Reader fosters student engagement and achievement.

Access myON:

Students can access Otus via myBackpack

myOn Tutorial:

(Coming soon)

What About the Media Center??

In person or virtual, our focus on reading will never end! You can expect to see the same reading programs, competitions, challenges and incentives that we offered in person, virtually as well. We have a goal to maintain the same positive reading culture we've established at THES, even while the physical media center is closed. Checkout what's to come!


Race2Read is a district-wide reading campaign that encourages not only students to read daily, but THES staff members and the community as well. Yes, parents we want you to log your reading too! The goal is for all students to read at least 20 minutes a day. The Race2Read challenge will continue throughout the 2020-2021 school year, so set your reminders and come up with a daily routine so we don't miss a beat!


Parents, teachers and students can help us win! Let's read every day to ensure we log more minutes than Slater Elementary.


Step 1: Read for at least 20 minutes (book, ebooks, magazines, newspapers, etc.)

Step 2: Log on to Beanstack (or Download the app for enhanced features) and record your daily reading.

Simple, right? There are no requirements for reading material or length of time reading. We simply want you and your family to read for at least 20 minutes a day.

Access Beanstack:


- Download the Beanstack Tracker App

Beanstack Tutorial:


Every year we develop incentive-based reading challenges per grade level to create fun and motivating energy around meeting weekly reading goals. In order to meet the challenge students must read daily and pass at least 3-4 AR quizzes a week (depending on grade level) with 80% or better. However, we will deliver more information in a few weeks via Zoom. Stay tuned!


Accelerated Reader (AR) is an educational tool for monitoring the practice of reading and comprehension. Students are able to pick a book of choice and proceed with a quick quiz based on what they read. As students pass quizzes, points are accumulated. Those points are used in a weekly/annual competition. Every Thursday there's an AR Report of the Week to highlight the following:

  • Top 10 Readers: Students with the most points in the entire school (cumulative).
  • Top 3 Weekly Readers Per Grade Level: Students with the most points per grade level between Monday - Thursday of each week. Every Monday, all points starts at zero. Students must have all quizzes completed before 12:00pm on Thursday.
  • Top Classroom per Grade Level: Classes with the most weekly points on each grade level.
  • Top 3 Classes in the Entire School: Classes with the most cumulative points.

Students who make the Top 10 or Top 3, will receive an incentive from the AR cart.


1. Pick a book from your home library or digital library (myBackpack ebooks or myON).

2. Read it (twice if necessary).

3. Log on to myBackpack and find the "Renaissance" App (Green R), which is AR.

4. After clicking to enter the Renaissance App, locate the book read (verify author).

5. Take the quiz.

AR Video Tutorial


Students in any grade level can join the book club. Depending on the number of students participating, students will be matched with others who share the same interest and reading levels.

The THES Virtual Book Club will meet once a week (schedule will be sent out prior to the start date) to do the following:

- Vote on ebooks to read

- Have a book talk about books we've read

- Virtual Author visits and other special guest

- Participate in book reviews

- Celebrate students who complete books

Students will also recieve weekly snack bags for the days we meet, as well as incentives and awards/recognition throughout the year. The idea is for students to read daily, engage in weekly book chats and to overall read for fun!

Sign up here:


We want to know what you think about the books you read! Students can record themselves telling us the following the information:

- Book title and author

- Favorite part of the book and why

- Should others read this book and why

Remember to use complete sentences, speak clearly and ensure that you have good light.

Share your video with Ms. Z via Google Drive:

All book reviews will be uploaded on the THES YouTube page for other to view!

Need an example?: *NO EDITING NEEDED

THES Media Specialist: Mrs. Frankson (Ms. Z)

For any additional questions and/or concerns, please use any of the options below to contact me. I'm also on Instagram: @THESMediaZ