Prep for the First Day of School: What You Need to Plan Out Now

The first day of school is just around the corner. And that means you need to get prepared for your first big photo opportunity of the year! Each fall, the first week of school is a bit of a rush–and it  definitely goes by in the blink of an eye. Preparing now for what you’ll need to capture the best images for your yearbook as students arrive back at school is essential. Below, I’ll walk you through the three biggest steps you need to take over the next week or so to prepare for that first day of school. And they’ll definitely leave you ready to start the new school year with your yearbook committee on the right foot!

Get Brainstorming

To capture those awesome first-day-of-school shots, you need to have some cool ideas in mind before the big day arrives. If you can, get your yearbook committee together in the weeks before school starts to brainstorm some of the most important memories that are made on that first day of school. Those are exactly the moments you want to nab, so that they can be commemorated on the pages of your book! Often, there are traditions that your school has on the first day of school–perhaps a parents’ breakfast, coffee and donuts in the atrium for the students, or a fun welcome back celebration. You’ll also want to grab some candid shots of students as they enter the school, or perhaps grab some quotes about what students are excited for at the end of their first day back. When you have a list of photo ops in advance, you’ll be much more likely to grab the best shots for the final pages of your book!

Lay Out Your Props

Like any photo shoot, your first day of school picture opportunities can be made even better with a few props. When you get your committee together to brainstorm photo opportunities, don’t forget to include some time to think about any props you’d like to include on the big day. This could be a small, stuffed version of your school’s mascot, a chalkboard frame that you can write a student’s grade on as they’re entering the school, or even a giant pencil to depict their return to academics. Then gather those props and bring them to school before the first day arrives. This way, you won’t be running around trying to gather everything up at the last minute, potentially missing great picture opportunities on the first day of school because you’re running late or frazzled.

Prep Interview Prompts

Finally, make sure you have your interview prompts ready to go if you plan on conducting any interviews for the content in your yearbook. These prompts could include:

  • What students did over the summer: include a feature that covers how much fun the kids at your school had on summer break.
  • What they’re most looking forward to: at the end of the first day back, interview students to ask what they’re most excited about in their new grade.
  • What they’re wearing: create a fun mini-fashion feature, since students are often dressed their best on that first day back in the classroom.

If you have your prompts ready to go before the first day, you can create unique and interesting features that go beyond the normal back-to-school questions, like “what did you do to get ready for the first day of school?” And when you create interesting content that students aren’t expecting to see, you build more interest for your book as a whole.

The First Day of School

While there are many important days throughout the year that you want to capture, the first day of school is one of the biggest. Students look forward to reconnecting with their classmates, and getting back into a routine. By thinking about the content you can create out of this  big day at your school in advance, you ensure that you cover all of its most important aspects. From traditions on your campus to just checking out what students did over the summer, it’s the perfect time to kick off your school year, and your yearbook, with a bang!