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Choosing Significant Pop Culture Milestones for the Yearbook

What pop culture events shaped your school year?
Photo credit: Flickr CC user: looking-forparadise

“Pop culture is a reflection of social change, not a cause of social change.” – John Podhoretz

Full disclosure: I am obsessed with the decades countdown shows on VH1. I Love the ’70s, I Love the ’80s, I Love the ‘00s – if any of these marathons are on the tube, you can bet your bottom dollar that my plans for the day will fly out the window in exchange for several hours reminiscing along with C-list celebrities about the good old days before Twitter, Facebook, and smartphones.

I think the reason these shows tend to be so popular is that they make people nostalgic for their childhood, youth, and glory days whether these were in high school or college. Being reminded of a song or commercial catchphrase that you hadn’t thought about in years can suddenly transport you back to a very specific moment in time, as hidden memories from years past come flooding back in a single instant.

That’s why it’s important to archive important pop culture moments in the yearbook. The good, the bad, and the goofy shenanigans that might have gone viral throughout the school year become a time capsule for it. Sure, you can’t escape the TikTok challenges right now, but in a few years you might forget completely that you once spent hours listening to The Weeknd trying to master the Blinding Lights challenge.

With so much information and tidbits of entertainment at our fingertips these days, it’s hard to remember what was all the rage last week, let alone last month. Our attention spans have grown smaller and smaller as more and more clips go viral.

So how do you figure out what moments will stand the test of time verses those that are just a flash in the pan?

In order to encompass all the important moments that went down in the past year, it’s important to look beyond your small group of reporters. One way to figure out what the student body thinks is memorable is to poll them. This is a quick and easy way to get answers quickly. Come up with six to eight questions for everyone to answer and tally up the results.

Some questions to consider asking:

– Name a YouTube video you’ve watched over and over.

– What pop singer left the biggest impression on you this year?

– What’s one movie you wish people would stop talking about?

– What clothing trend did you fall in love with?

– Did you binge watch any TV shows on Netflix?

– Who do you think is having the best year ever and why?

If these questions seem too open-ended, you can modify the survey by providing answers they have to choose between by filling in bubbles or simply circling.

Example:

Who had the best music video of the year?

a) Taylor Swift

b) Jason Derulo

c) Beyonce

What pop culture moments do you think helped define your year? Consider this when focusing your question.

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