As you’ve recently experienced, being the person in charge of the yearbook committee can be a slightly intense undertaking. This is never truer than at the end of the school year, when you’re working to get all of your content created, proofed, and added to your template before your delivery deadline. And that means summer break can’t possibly come at a better time. But while you’re relaxing and refreshing your mind during the warmest months of the year, don’t forget to take some time to engage your creative side! Below, I’ve come up with some fun activities that will help you have a great summer, and also give you some engaging new exercises for creativity that you can bring back to your committee in the fall.
If there’s one thing that can get you laughing, it’s a compilation of funny videos on YouTube. So on those days it’s too hot to venture outside (or too rainy), jump online and spend a few hours enjoying cute kittens, adorable babies or people pulling pranks on their significant others. As you find a few that really get you giggling, save them in an email or a spreadsheet that you can refer back to during the school year. While these videos will help you to relax after a stressful publication season, they’re also a great tool for breaking up or starting off a committee meeting with something hilarious when you all come back together in the fall!
Music is a great way to spur creativity. It’s also an excellent tool to help you unwind. This summer, spend some time pulling together a great playlist of all your favorite music, past and present. Try to incorporate some artists that may be less well-known to your committee, as changing rhythms, tones and timbres have been shown to really engage the creative side of your brain.1 Personally, I find that a playlist full of songs without words really helps when reading, writing, or editing. This summer, you can use this playlist at the beach, while you’re working on your house or mowing the lawn, or as you’re pulling together your class syllabi for the school year. Then bring your playlist to your yearbook committee meetings to share with your team in the fall!
Building creativity–both for yourself and among your yearbook committee–means accessing both the left and right sides of your brain. To really engage your ingenuity, you need exercises that work both sides of your brain at the same time. Here are a few great ones to get you started:
- Look for new ideas: To think outside of the box on a more regular basis, you have to train your brain to look for creative ideas when you’re living everyday life. To make this a priority, you need the right tools to capture ideas on the go. While a pen and paper will work fine, you can also use apps like Evernote and Backpack. Both are easy to access and offer sharing capabilities, making it simple to send new concepts to the rest of your team when you’re out and about!
- Use your non-dominant side: Giving yourself a challenge by using your non-dominant hand in normal activities can stimulate both sides of your brain. Practice writing, catching a ball and picking things up with your opposite hand to get those synapses firing!
- Practice your colors: One way you can start encouraging the right and left sides of your brain to communicate better is through a color exercise. Write down different colors on a piece of paper using a marker of another color. For example, write yellow in a blue marker, green in a purple marker, etc. Then practice reading the name of the color as written. While it may not be the most thrilling party trick, it’s actually much more difficult than it sounds!
Spark Creativity Within Your Yearbook Committee
Taking a break from your yearbook committee during the summer months gives you plenty of time to refresh your mind before coming back to school in the fall. These particular tips are excellent ways to stimulate your creativity and take a break from planning and scheduling, yet they can carry into fall and be tools your yearbook committee will use. So watch some videos, relax to some tunes, and exercise your brain in silly ways. Before you know it, you’ll have a bunch of new ways to get your committee off on an innovative foot in the fall, while also enjoying your summer break!