The 2013 Scholastic Summer Challenge began a little over two weeks ago, and kids have already read over 22 million minutes. (You can pick your jaw up off the floor now.) Not only do we have more students and classrooms participating this year than any year before, weve also surpassed last years minute count at the two-week mark, which was5,356,405 minutes. Impressed yet? Needless to say, the summer is off to a superb start. At this rate, kids are in good shape to beat last years World Record in reading (95,859,491 minutes). That said, we have some NEW features we want to share with you all: New! Parents, if youre a SummerChallenge first-timer, you may have a few questions about how the program operates. Weve just put together thishelpful guide that will tell you all about the registration process,whatthe program entails, and why its so important to get kids involved. New!Our Summer Challenge Pinterest board will have a new collection of books every week. Weve rounded up some old favorites, new titles, and in keeping with our theme, books that take you around theworld! New! Were so thrilled to have a Summer Challenge partner in LitWorld. Starting in June, theyll be contributing some of their amazing resources to our content calendar for parents. Were also excited well be hosting a Facebook chat with LitWorld founder Pam Allyn later in the summer! Details to come soon. We also have someimportant remindersfor teachers involved. See below! Reminder: Teachers, if you havent done so already, send this letter home to parents about the importance of summer reading. Encourage them to establish a reading routine for the summer and to check the content calendar for ideas for makingreading fun for kids! Reminder: Teachers, you can still enter for a chance to win a classroom library! Learn more here. (Deadline: June 30). And lastly, abig thanks to the U.S. Governors Spouses who have signed on as Reading Ambassadors of the Summer Challenge! The Reading Ambassadorswhose names will be announced soonare encouraging summer reading in their states by hosting events at local schools and distributing the books that Scholastic has donated on their behalf. You can seeGeorganne Nixon, theFirst Lady of MO, in action in the picture above.We love seeing kids across the country get excited about reading this summer! Thats all for now. Encourage your summer readers to keep up the good work!