The index is the first place students look because they want to see what pages they’re on. But if you wait until spring to run the index, you’re bound to have mistakes and missing information.
To alleviate final deadline stress, consider tagging names throughout the year. A smart way to do this is right before pages are submitted. It’s also an opportunity to double check that names are spelled correctly and include the right grade. Consider giving staffers a grade solely based on name and grade accuracy.
Run the index after completing the people section. This is where staffs see the most name discrepancies. Often students go by a nickname that’s not reflected on the official school portrait. Running the index early can catch these doubles and help consolidate the listing to one version of the person’s name.
Use the index as a marketing and sales tool. Post the index outside the yearbook room to show students how many times they’re already in the book. Send coupons or buying reminders to students who are in the book, but haven’t bought one yet.
Let the index guide content. Compare the index to the sales list, noting what students have bought a book but aren’t included yet. Share that info with reporters and photographers, making those buyers a priority. Similarly, note what students have already reached the max number of times in the book, and strive to select other people in photos, stories and captions.
Another layer of coverage: Indexing classes, clubs, events and sports helps students find them in the book. Considering bolding those entries in the index or creating additional lists for each category as a reader service.
Blended coverage provides an alternative way to cover academics, clubs and sports in a more balanced and realistic way. It’s also allows coverage of multiple groups in less space.
The most common ways to blend coverage are by chronology or similarity. A chronological blend explores what happens on a given day, week or month. A December spread might focus on studying for exams, semester end projects, Christmas parties and holiday volunteering opportunities. A blend based on similarities provides a topical approach. A game day spread could feature fans, cheerleaders, athletic trainers, football managers, the band and the dance team.
Employing a blended coverage approach provides more balanced and realistic coverage. It moves the focus to actual activities classes and clubs do, eliminating dull meeting and classroom photos. It also allows more active groups to receive additional coverage spread throughout the book.
Consider these blended coverage ideas:
- A November spread could feature class projects, the final district football game, things to be thankful for and Black Friday shopping.
- A projects and presentations spread allows multiple academic classes to mingle on the same spread and creates better picture opportunities.
- A fundraiser, T-shirt or holiday party spread could focus on small clubs that don’t have big events or activities.
- A volunteering and leadership spread would showcase organizations which take a strong role in student government or participate in volunteering opportunities.
- Freshman and junior varsity teams could share space on the same spread, substituting the traditional story for mini-stories, Q&As or quotes to provide coverage for two, three, even four or five teams.
Not sure how to get started? Learn the step-by-step process of blending coverage and see examples of blended coverage spreads.
Every four years we get a chance to focus on a bit of national history in our books. And this year will no doubt be one of the most historic and talked about elections. Whether you include a simple survey or devote two pages to the 2016 Presidential Election, have fun with your coverage and design. Consider these possibilities:
- Poll students on who they would have voted for
- Write a feature about the seniors who volunteered on a political campaign
- Interview students who voted for the first time
- Gather opinions on the results of the election
- Create a timeline of the most interesting and unusual soundbites from the election
- Explain the Electoral College through graphics and text
- Utilize an artist to create drawings, painting or computer-generated art of the candidates and the parties
Still need ideas?
Check our Pinterest board
for suggestions including recent coverage and yearbooks’ spreads from previous election years.
One of the best ways to illustrate a yearbook’s theme is through the font choices. Whether you’re going for a fun, flirty look or an elegant, classic feel, the typography can emphasize, clarify and support the theme. Consider these suggestions as you narrow your font choices:
- Select a font that has a large family with plenty of weights – Choosing a font family with lots of brothers, sisters and cousins (i.e. thin, book, medium, medium italic, etc.) allows you to have versatility, but the consistency of the same typeface. Use a book or regular weight for body copy, but consider using an italic, medium or condensed version for secondary coverage type. Mixing light and bold weights are a great way to add contrast in headlines.
- Establish a type hierarchy and stick to it – Once you choose a size and leading for body copy and secondary coverage, keep to those sizes throughout the book for consistency.
- Not sure what sizes to use? Try 9 to 10 pt for body copy, 7 to 9 pt for secondary coverage, 16-24 pt for secondary headlines and 48 pt and higher for headlines. Before submitting spreads, we recommend printing pages at 100 percent and comparing to the previous yearbook and other books to verify the size is big enough for readability, but not too large to distract from the other elements on the page.
- Consider adding an accent font – A fun, decorative or bold font can reflect the personality of the theme and accentuate the tone in a fabulous way. Just remember, it’s an accent for a reason. A little goes a long way.
Did you know? With a new year, we’re excited to provide a host of new typography choices. New font posters will arrive in a few weeks, but in the meantime, here’s the full list of our new fonts and smart combinations.
With hundreds of students filing through one location in one day, Picture Day is the perfect opportunity to snag some extra coverage for the yearbook.
Just think — in one day, you could knock out all of the people section coverage. It’s an ideal way to ensure you get other kids in the book — the ones not involved in clubs and sports. You could:
- Ask poll questions
- Ask questions for fun sidebars and secondary coverage
- Take candid pictures
- Take fun mugs for sidebars
It’s also an opportunity for the yearbook staff and the Journalism students to hone their interviewing skills. And it’s a great chance for photographers and photojournalism classes to capture the day and snap profile shots and mugs.
See this checklist for some suggestions on how to prepare for Picture Day.