It’s go time: a blank yearbook ladder is in front of you and you need to know which pages to put in the yearbook. Do you take a chronological approach and cover events as they happen? Or should you create a sectional yearbook and handle coverage topically? Did you even know there were options beyond this is what we’ve always done? Below are samples of how other schools have done it and their rationale.
Put Your Yearbook Pages Chronologically
Sequoia high school’s yearbook uses 50 of its 148 pages to cover academics, student life, and special events on spreads. The two spreads below show what happened in the month of January and cover the literary food festival, spring musical auditions, lunchtime candids, as well as coursework from economics, Spanish, drafting, logic, yearbook, and graphic design classes. These spreads feature over 40 students and five faculty members.
There’s no rule on how to put pages in your yearbook chronologically: we’ve seen schools organize their yearbooks monthly, quarterly, and seasonally. Treering’s Seasons of Our Lives yearbook theme makes it easy to put pages chronologically in your yearbook.
Feeling ambitious? Weekly chronological coverage can be of value to larger or K-12 schools within modules dedicated to academics, club activities and meetings, plus a sporting event of the week.
Chronological cover yearbook coverage helps keep you organized by:
- Structuring your coverage: you can’t cover an event after it’s passed
- Building in mini-deadlines: because you have a structure, you can build due dates and workflows
- Telling the story of the year as it unfolds
Use Traditional Yearbook Sections
Tradition works for a reason. Done right, yearbooks show the complete picture (pun intended) of how students contribute to their communities. It’s a visual reminder of how each story weaves together to become a group narrative. Yearbooks are definitely worth bonding over.
By using sectional, or traditional, coverage to put together your yearbook, pages are placed in topical categories. We know to find Start with Hello in the club section and volleyball in sports.
Traditional sections to put in your yearbook include
Student portraits (organized by class, homeroom, or grade), staff, and personality profiles tend to dominate yearbooks. Consider breaking up coverage by adding in siblings, outside-of-school hobbies, and international students.
All the big, schoolwide moments plus the small distinctive ones (think homecoming, Read Across America, hot cocoa in Mrs. Cruz’s classroom, Dot Day, lawn chair lunches, etc.) make their home in the student life section.
Clubs and committees that comprise a large portion of student life may warrant their own section. If most of your clubs are inactive beyond a monthly lunch, consider keeping club activities in the student life portion or feature the group photos in the reference section.
Remember, action shots have a place, as do club sports, pre-game rituals, and scoreboards.
If you’re not putting a “Life in…” page, consider grouping academics coverage by grade or subject. Ensure daily classroom activities, as well as holiday parties, are included in the coverage.
Put pages devoted to the index, group photos (club and team), and ads in the reference section of the yearbook.
If you need additional inspiration for which pages to put in your yearbook, check out these sample ladders from other schools and adapt them to fit yours.