A FEW USEFUL TIPS
A step-by-step guide to installing Skype on your computer and
arranging your virtual Schoolreaders meeting
TO INSTALL SKYPE ON YOUR COMPUTER AND SET UP YOUR ACCOUNT
Either click here, or type
into the address bar on your web browser (you may be using Safari, Google Chrome, or another browser).
You should see this screen. Click on the 'Download Skype' button.
Click on the small arrow at the right-hand end of the blue button. A drop-down menu will appear which offers you the choice of 'Skype for Mac' or 'Skype for Windows'. Click on whichever is appropriate for you, and Skype will start to send a file to your computer.
Once Skype has successfully arrived - or downloaded - onto your computer, you will see this message. This means that the Skype software (all the information your computer needs to make Skype work) is safely on your computer, but you still have to 'install' it. Once that's done, you'll be able to open it and use it.
In order to install Skype on your computer, you need to find the newly downloaded Skype file.
The Skype file will be in your 'download folder'. Once you've found it, start the installation process by double clicking on the blue Skype button then simply follow the instructions.
Once you've successfully installed Skype, you'll see this message. Click on the 'Let's go' button to open Skype.
Press the 'Sign in or create' button. Now it's time to set up a personal Skype account.
If you have a Microsoft account, you can use this to sign in to Skype. If you don't have a Microsoft account, just press the ‘Create one’ button.
If you’re creating an account, fill in the personal details requested. These will include your phone number, name and date of birth. You’ll also be asked to create a password.
Once you've added your personal details, Skype will make sure that your computer microphone and sound systems are working properly by performing an audio test, and will also check that your camera is working properly. You should see yourself appear on screen!
Next Skype will help you to find the details of people you may want to be in touch with - for example to chat with, or to invite to your Schoolreaders virtual quiz meeting. Press 'OK' if you are happy to go ahead with this. You can read Skype's privacy statement by pressing 'Privacy & Cookies'.
Now you are ready to start using Skype. You could start exploring straight away, or you may want to shut Skype down and come back to it. To shut Skype down, click on the small red cross at the top left of your screen (for Macs) or top right of your screen (for PC or Windows computers).
When you're ready to use Skype again simply look for the Skype logo on your main computer home screen, and double-click on it to open it up again.
Now you can start exploring Skype. Find out who Skype has already added to your address book by clicking on the contacts button:
Don't worry if you can't see your friends' names here. They can either install Skype themselves (and you can then add them to your address book), or they can join your meeting without even needing to be Skype users. Instructions are below.
TO SET UP YOUR SCHOOLREADERS VIRTUAL QUIZ MEETING:
Inviting your friends to join you:
Open Skype a day or so before you want your meeting to start and click on the 'chats' button:
And then on the 'Meet now' button which appears directly below it.
This will take you to a video screen on which your face should appear! Click the blue 'Share invite' button and a dropdown menu will appear. Click on 'Copy link'. Once you've clicked on 'Copy link', write an email to all the people you would like to join your quiz meeting, and paste the link (which will still be on your clipboard) into your email message (nb, don't put it into the 'subject' box, or it won't work). Remember also to tell your friends the date and time of your virtual meeting, so that they will know when to join you via Skype.
When the time for your meeting comes:
When the time for your meeting arrives, your friends should open the email from you (it's fine if they have already opened it earlier). They should now click on the link you've sent them, which will take them to this page.
If they're already a Skype user, they can press the 'Sign in' button, but if they don't have a Skype account, they can simply press 'Join as Guest'.
A couple of minutes before the appointed meeting time, you, the host, will start the meeting by pressing the 'Start call' button.
Very soon, you will find that your friends appear on your screen. Everybody should be able to see and hear each other. But if there are problems, it may be that your friends have not allowed Skype to turn on their microphones and cameras. They should simply click on the blue icons on their screens.
Start your meeting and have fun!
Participants on smart phones or tables (for example, iPads)
Teammates using a smart phone or tablet will need to download Skype for their device in advance of the quiz using this link
Can I share the quiz questions with my teammates?
If you think other quiz participants would like to be able to see the quiz questions, you can forward them the email we sent you when you registered for the quiz. The questions are attached to the email. If you no longer have the email, you can email this link to your friends:
How do I end our meeting?
To end the call, click the red circle at the bottom of the screen.
It should be plain sailing...
We recommend having a ‘test run’ in advance of your quiz event to familiarise yourself with how everything works. Skype, along with other platforms like Facetime and Google Hangouts, does rely on your having a good internet connection to function properly. If your internet coverage is not very reliable you may occasionally find that you, or others in the group, get cut off. If that happens, simply re-join the call by clicking on the email link.
Some common problems
First-time users need to be aware that they may need to switch on the camera and microphone on their smart phone, tablet or laptop.
We're here to help
If you are struggling to set up Skype or your virtual meeting, please contact us on but please bear in mind we are only available during office hours.