When planning the high school yearbook, wise yearbook advisers will keep in mind that a yearbook’s function is three-fold: to serve as a memory book of this particular student body in this school in this community–for the current school year.
Design a Huge High School Yearbook Photograph Featuring Current Trends for This School Year
One two-page spread that a yearbook staff will find enjoyable to create, that is open to all types of students and that will find as much value 25 and 30 years from now is a “What’s Hot in 20-” feature photo spread.
The precise title should be something the high school yearbook staff devises. Examples include: “Can You Spot the Trends of 2011?” or “Popular Styles, Trends and Fashions at Piedmont High School in 2011-2012.” Whatever the title, it should reflect this particular school and what students consider cool (or groovy) at this time in their lives.
In 2010 Facebook and Twitter groups were rediscovering and reconnecting with their classmates of 1954, 1975, 1984 and decades of other years. Before that it was MySpace. Who knows what medium they will use in future years? However, one thing is for sure: they will reconnect; they will remember; they will relive. Nostalgia will always rank high, no matter the current trends.
Feature Popular Current Trends Each Year in High School Yearbook Spread
Students from different decades will dance differently. They’ll do the Lindy Hop, the Charleston, the Black Bottom, the Bop, the Mashed Potatoes, the Swim, the Electric Slide, the Butt, the Cha-Cha and the Monkey. Who can forget the Egyptian, the Hustle and Disco Fever?
Show What Types of Transportation High School Students Use
Classmates walk to school, ride buses, ride bikes and drive cars. Each year brings specific models. Scooters and skates give way to Schwinn bicycles. Old Desotos with fins were replaced with GTO’s, Ford Mustangs, Volkswagen Love Bugs and Buses. Camaro convertibles eventually became Honda Civics, Toyota Corollas or even the occasional, more expensive BMW 3, Audi or Lexus.
Feature Current Trends in Popular Music and Entertainment
Music has proved as mercurial as fashion when it comes to current trends. Bing Crosby, Frank Sinatra, Perry Como, Elvis and the Beatles appealed to high school teenagers. So did Judy Garland, Nat “King” Cole, Sammy Davis Jr. and Doris Day. Along came Burt Bacharach and Roberta Flack. The list soon becomes as endless as Lionel Ritchie’s love.
Beyonce, J-Lo, P Diddy and the beat –err– list goes on.
In 1984 Michael Jackson’s bestselling Thriller album remained at the top of the charts. So did Boy George and The Culture Club, not to forget Madonna and Loverboy’s Mike Reno. Teens loved Eddie Murphy, Rick Springfield and the Smurfs (the little blue ones, not the band). Tom Selleck, Remington Steele and “Beat It” were what students daydreamed about during class instead of their aviation math, Algebra or computer math, their shorthand, typing or keyboarding.
Create a High School Photograph That Endures: Consider the Nostalgia Factor
Yearbook editors and yearbook advisers might plan a huge spread with a single photograph that bleeds across the gutter, taking up two entire pages. One or two trendy cars can be featured with students showing up in all sorts of sports gear, hobby paraphernalia, fashionable outfits – both formal and casual – and trends that they will definitely know about. An adviser need not control the shoot too arbitrarily because students will be more in tune to current trends than any yearbook adviser on the planet.
Double Check High School Yearbook Photographs for Inappropriate Subject Matter
Of course, advisers need to double check photos for items that are dangerous, illegal or totally inappropriate and prevent one or two ill-chosen props from ruining an entire photo shoot. Even if items are perused carefully beforehand, the photographs should be examined with a magnifying glass before photos are submitted to the yearbook company. It is all too easy for huge blow-up photographs to end up showing beer logos, marijuana symbols, inappropriate graffiti or even the occasional nipple visible through thin fabric.
In this type of photograph Murphy is more apt than ever to rear his ugly head. The result is worth it: a dynamic picture for then, for now and for the ages, a picture worth far more than a thousand words.
High School Yearbooks are Memory Books
“Mom, why did you have all that poufy hair?”
“Was it Dippity-Goo or Dippity-Do?”
“Dad, did you really tuck those nasty cigarettes into your shirt sleeve?”
“You wore that?” Aaack!!
“You dated him?” Sigh.
Establish a High School Yearbook Current Trends Photograph as a Tradition
A number of yearbook staffs have turned this yearbook photograph into an annual tradition. Some limit it to seniors, but coverage will more aptly represent the student body if it is opened to other students as well.
No matter what direction the photo goes, such a yearbook photograph will reward readers and history buffs years from now as they sort through what is important to them now and, years from now, remember the way they were.
More Yearbook Articles by This Author:
Organizing the High School Yearbook–Make an Overall Plan
Organizing the High School Yearbook–The Yearbook Ladder