Remembering COVID-19: How to Document History Through Your Yearbook

Remembering COVID-19: How to Document History Through Your Yearbook

Tips for preserving this unique moment in time.

Yearbooks are not only treasured keepsakes. They’re also a powerful way to document the history of a school. And while every class’s yearbook is a special piece of the school’s narrative, this year’s edition will be unique. Students, teachers, and staff are all living together through a historical moment in time that’s directly impacting schools. Everyone in your school community has had their lives turned upside down. The yearbook, however, is an impactful way to bring back a sense of normalcy—by reflecting on friends, teachers, and milestones.

How do we document the school year in the era of COVID-19? There’s no doubt we must broaden the scope of yearbooks beyond classes, sports, and extracurricular events. These tips and ideas can help you create a yearbook that celebrates your school community and captures the story of this global pandemic for future generations.

Report the story

COVID-19 and the effect it has had on our schools and society is something that kids will undoubtedly study in history class 50 years from now. Document the COVID-19 story in your yearbook with charts, maps, facts, and figures that illustrate the development of the disease and its impact. Create a timeline to show how the pandemic has traveled and progressed. Document the changes and adaptations in your school environment. What school looked like at the end of last year (where we left off). Then skip to the beginning of the new school year when things will certainly look a lot different. Show how these changes evolve throughout the year. This can be done by capturing before and after photos of classrooms, public spaces, playgrounds, etc.

Record the new lexicon

This year, student slang isn’t the only thing to become part of your school’s current lexicon. Along with the worldwide crisis has come a unique new list of related words and phrases. Record the terms that have become part of your school’s everyday language. Some examples may include: social distancing, flatten the curve, pandemic, shelter in place, safer at home, etc.

Rely heavily on student and staff input

COVID-19 has impacted individuals differently. Allow many voices to tell the story by encouraging students and staff to share their stories. Get creative and ask for photos, poems, stories, and artwork to include in this special edition of the yearbook. 

Conduct interviews

There are so many compelling stories to discover within your school community. Take a deep dive, and ask questions that reveal the impact of the crisis, not just on day-to-day routines, but on how the COVID crisis has changed our way of living. Feature quotes throughout your yearbook that capture the essence of what your community has gone through together. 

Distribute surveys

Short survey questions are a great way to gather interesting responses for feature layouts in your yearbook. Here are a few suggestions and examples:

  • Top Ten lists (ten ways to survive spending 24/7 with your family)
  • By the Numbers (numbers of athletes affected by the shutdown)
  • Six Words or Less (feelings the pandemic brought out)
  • Quarantine Must-Haves (things you couldn’t have lived without during quarantine)
  • Best/Worst (things about distance learning)
  • Uncover lessons learned

    Despite the challenges, many people have gained a bit of wisdom from the situation. Spotlight their revelations in a special section. Some examples may include:

  • “I learned I retain information so much better when I read at my own pace.”
  • “I realize how much I like collaborating on problem-solving with my classmates.”
  • “It’s important to be flexible and optimistic when I experience changes.”
  • Reveal community connections

    We have provided support for each other in so many unique, uplifting ways. Your yearbook can document COVID-19 by featuring photos of graduation drive-bys, mobile spirit parades, socially distant home visits, posters in windows, thank-you signs, and chalk sidewalks. In addition, virtual learning has invited us into each other’s homes, allowing us to get to know one another in a more intimate, human way. Who knew your math teacher had a treehouse office? Or that the kid in your history class was a rodeo champion? 

    Showcase the humorous side of the situation

    Despite the seriousness of the situation, a lot of good humor has been generated from the quarantine. Collect stories for your yearbook that include things such as favorite quarantine outfits, funny Zoom moments, social media trends, and hilarious COVID-themed memes.

    Highlight acts of kindness

    Communities have come together to support one another in unprecedented ways. Document COVID-19 in your yearbook by telling the stories of your hometown heroes. Include commentary about people who did things like this:

  • worked together to meet students’ technology needs
  • distributed food to families when schools shut down
  • helped neighbors
  • donated food and supplies
  • put on fundraisers
  • sewed masks
  • manufactured face shields with 3D printers
  • Document your school’s history with a yearbook like no other

    Even during a year as historic and tumultuous as 2020, a yearbook can provide a sense of normalcy to students and families. A yearbook gives them the opportunity to reflect on the unique story of their school and its community. It’s a way to help them remember their friends, teachers, and milestones. Though the upcoming school year may look different, Remember Me can help you navigate the process of creating a yearbook. It’s easy to get started with virtual access from anywhere. Remember Me can even help you sell your yearbooks with an online storefront and direct-to-home shipping. You’re always guaranteed the lowest prices and high-quality printing.

    Written by Elizabeth Mulvahill

    Elizabeth Mulvahill is a Contributing Editor with WeAreTeachers. She has taught elementary, literacy and small group intervention. She currently resides outside of Boulder, Colorado and loves learning new things, hearing people's stories and traveling the globe.


    50 Tips, Tricks, and Ideas for Creating School Yearbooks

    50 Tips, Tricks, and Ideas for Creating School Yearbooks

    Find all the necessary yearbook resources to create lasting memories.

    Maybe you’re the yearbook club advisor or the staff liaison for parent volunteers putting the yearbook together. Perhaps a yearbook program is part of your school’s journalism curriculum. Or maybe you’d just like to create a memory book for your classroom. Whatever the case, you’ll love these 50 tips, tricks, and ideas to help make your yearbook memorable.

    1. Recognize your yearbook is unique

    As author Pat Conroy eloquently observed, “A yearbook is a love letter a school writes to itself.” Yearbooks are important because they tell your school’s own unique story. They reflect school pride and build community. And for your students, their yearbook becomes a priceless collectible, limited edition, one-of-a-kind keepsake.

    2. Get busy making memories

    In order to have a yearbook, you need memories to include! Download a free poster below to hang in your yearbook classroom. You can share it with other teachers in your school to inspire students to make the most of every day this year.

    3. Invest in forever

    Some people wonder, why bother with a yearbook? Wouldn’t it be simpler to just create a Facebook page for everyone to upload their school pictures to? Well sure, but there’s something about the time-honored tradition of sitting with that heavy book in your lap that transports you back to a different time.

    4. Think of your yearbook as an important historical document

    You never know where your students are going to end up in life. Maybe one day your yearbook will be valuable proof that you actually went to school with (insert famous person here)!

    5. Start early

    Your yearbook creation is not a project you want to figure out as you go. This planning guide has plenty of yearbook resources to help you break the big picture down into manageable pieces

    6. If it does get down to the wire, don’t panic

    Unfortunately, if you find you’re on a short timetable to get the job done, download “Your Last-Minute Guide to Creating a Yearbook,” below with practical, actionable tips on getting the job done quickly.

    7. Do your research

    Your yearbook project requires that you see the big picture. Check out all the yearbook resources in this A–Z Yearbook Dictionary. It lays out all the terms for you.

    8. Let students lead

    Teacher Sarah G. puts it perfectly: “It is absolutely critical for any yearbook group to be student-led with staff support, not the other way around. As an adult, it’s easy to pick up the slack, but that takes the process out of kids’ hands where it belongs. A stunningly beautiful yearbook is, of course, our goal, but a meaningful and fun process will be far more memorable in the end.” Below, find 16 stress-free ideas for student-led yearbook creation.

    9. Recruit a wide spectrum for your yearbook staff

    Think outside the box when it comes to recruiting your yearbook staff. After all, the more viewpoints, the more diverse and inclusive your yearbook will be.

    10. Simplify your job as yearbook advisor

    Veteran yearbook advisor Julie Faulkner dishes her best advice on everything from deadlines and budgets to organization and collaboration. Check out her Fast Five for Advisors below.

    11. Delegate!

    Give every student on your staff a clear role to fill. Besides editor and copy editor, there are as many specialized jobs required to get the job done. These include human resources, head photographer, events coordinator, etc. Also, check out this handy checklist below for more yearbook staff jobs.

    12. Streamline the process with technology

    Gone are the days of cutting and pasting photos, laying out each page by hand, then shipping the pages off to a production company. Thanks to technology, the process is much quicker and simpler. Here’s everything you need to know about creating yearbooks online below.

    13. Choose a partner that makes it easy

    There are many yearbook companies to choose from. Make sure you partner with one that provides the best yearbook resources in customer service, tools, ideas, promotional ideas … and of course, price!

    14. Use a page ladder

    A page ladder is a handy tool that helps you organize your yearbook and acts as a quick reference guide to make sure you’ve covered all the grades, topics, and clubs you want to include.

    15. Employ a designer

    Choose a yearbook company that gives you lots of design options. The intuitive designer feature from Remember Me allows you to edit (resize, crop, and rotate) photos right within the page layout.

    16. Customize your theme

    You want your yearbook to reflect all that is special and unique about your school. Choosing a theme is the first step. There are many options out there. Below are 15 yearbook theme ideas to spark your inspiration.

    17. Experiment with layout

    There are innumerable possible layouts available for your yearbook. One of the best ways to brainstorm ideas is to see what else is out there.

    18. Make your pages “extra"

    Design and customize pages that truly reflect your school’s accomplishments and culture. Below there are 15 clever pages and ideas to make your yearbook extra special.

    19. Explore unique fonts

    Designing a yearbook gives you the opportunity to express your creativity all the way down to the smallest details. Check out these creative fonts below, you can use to personalize the different sections of your yearbook.

    20. Create custom editions

    If you have a large school that spans many different grade levels, you may consider creating different editions. For example, you can offer softcover books for younger students and hardcover books for older students.

    21. Stretch your timeline

    Choose a yearbook company that processes your order quickly. A quick turnaround allows you to push deadlines and that means you can include more spring events in your yearbook.

    22. Don’t cross copyright boundaries

    As a yearbook advisor, you are responsible for all content that is included in your yearbook project. Certainly, make sure you don’t violate any copyright protections by securing the copyrights to any trademarked or licensed content.

    23. Mind your grammar

    Sometimes we all need a little help with our grammar. For that reason, it’s helpful to add this handy cheat sheet to your list of yearbook resources. It ensures your text makes the grade.

    24. Proofread!

    Aargh! There’s nothing worse than spending hundreds of hours on a project only to find a typo that was overlooked. That’s why it’s essential to proofread, proofread, and proofread again! Also, get as many eyes as possible on your copy before you turn it over to be printed.

    25. Join in on the fun

    Most people think yearbooks are all about the students, but looking back and remembering all the great teachers you had is a big part of the fun. Get creative with your staff photos and leave a lasting impression.

    26. Don’t forget the support staff

    Devote space to the very important staff that work their magic behind the scenes. Your custodians, cafeteria workers, paraprofessionals, office staff, etc. will certainly appreciate being included.

    27. Showcase a little time traveling

    Then-and-now pages are a fun way to witness how much people and places change over time. Place old and new images of staff, seniors, your school building, etc. side by side. For younger kids, who change so much in the course of a year, you can also include a beginning-of-year picture vs. end-of-year shot.

    28. Be inclusive with your coverage

    Do your best to make sure every student is included beyond their basic headshot. Whether they are featured in clubs and activities or captured in a few candid photos, every student certainly looks forward to saying, “Hey, I’m on this page too!”

    29. Give students a heads up

    Let’s be real. The first thing students are going to do with their yearbook is search for photos of themselves. So make it easy (and potentially boost sales!) by letting them know where they’re included.

    31. Or try alternative superlatives

    Some people argue that traditional awards are outdated. Think outside the box with a few of these alternatives.

    32. Consider fresh angles for sports coverage

    Undoubtedly, some of the most exciting times in school can be centered on sports . Design your pages with live-action shots and creative angles to capture those wins and best achievements.

    33. Highlight good works

    Definitely include coverage of all the ways your school is working to make the world a better place. Whether your students participated in a walk-a-thon, held a food drive, or held a “senior” prom with senior citizens, document their good works with a full spread.

    34. Crowdsource photos

    Tap into as many sources as possible for photos. Put out the call to students, teachers, and coaches. Ask parents to share shots they’ve taken at school events or field trips.

    35. Include lots of candids

    Keep the boring staged photos to a minimum. Capture your students and staff in action to make your yearbook a lively and interesting chronicle.

    36. Set up a photo booth

    Inspire students to ham it up by setting up a photo booth complete with fun and silly props.

    37. Put words in their mouths

    Use a blackboard with customizable thought bubbles as a clever background for group shots or as an introduction page for each section.

    38. Include a blooper page

    Reserve space to capture some of the lighter moments from the school year. (But make sure you get permission from the subject first before printing!)

    39. Include a time capsule

    Create a visual time capsule of what life is like at this particular point in time. Pull data from end-of-year best-of lists or consult the experts—your students.

    40. Take a survey

    Let students weigh in on their favorite music, movies, sports, school events, subjects, field trips, hangouts, and pastimes. Twenty years from now they’ll look back and be able to relive their glory days.

    41. Use interviews to tell stories

    A yearbook is more than a collection of pictures. It’s the unique story of your students and your school. Tap into individual student stories to help paint the picture.

    42. Gather quotes early

    One of the most memorable parts of high school yearbooks is the time-honored tradition of senior quotes. Therefore, get your seniors thinking about what they want to say early on and start checking names off the list as soon as possible.

    43. Make predictions

    Ask students to submit predictions about the future. Pick a few categories that resonate with your school climate so you can publish the results.

    44. Include families in the fun

    Reserve space for families to submit notes of congratulations for their students. Be sure to communicate clear guidelines for length and content. Senior ads are not only a great way to honor graduating students … they’re also an additional source of revenue.

    45. Leave some white space

    It’s tempting to fill every inch of your yearbook with photos, texts, and graphics, but make sure to leave some blank areas for autograph pages, notes, and journaling.

    46. Ramp up excitement with an assembly

    Get your student body excited about the yearbook by holding a short assembly. Show a slideshow of previous yearbook photos and display past editions for them to check out. Most importantly, thoroughly explain the ordering process and make sure students know of any deadlines.

    47. Get the word out

    You’ve spent months working hard to put your school’s yearbook together. Now what? Time to sell! Check out the yearbook resources in this handy guide, How to Sell Your Yearbook, for some great advice.

    48. Advertise!

    Tap into the artistic talent on your yearbook staff to create yearbook resources, like posters, so you can drum up yearbook sales.

    49. Keep the ordering process simple

    Ask teachers to give parents a heads up about yearbook orders in their weekly newsletter. Distribute order forms well in advance of the deadline (but not so far ahead that they get lost or forgotten). Provide teachers with a clear and easy process for keeping track of, and turning in, order forms. Also, add this printable order form below to your arsenal of yearbook resources.

    50. Celebrate with a yearbook signing party

    Signing parties are a fun and easy way to distribute yearbooks to students. You can also order extras and sell them to students who have not yet ordered a copy. Hold the party in your school cafeteria, gym, or outside and invite everyone! Serve with ice cream sundaes or other yummy treats. A yearbook signing party is a perfect way to celebrate your community and the end of the school year together.

    Posted by Elizabeth Mulvahill

    Elizabeth Mulvahill is a Contributing Editor with WeAreTeachers. She has taught elementary, literacy and small group intervention. She currently resides outside of Boulder, Colorado and loves learning new things, hearing people's stories and traveling the globe.


    16 Ideas for an Easier, Stress-Free, and Student-Led Yearbook-Making Process

    16 Ideas for an Easier, Stress-Free, and Student-Led Yearbook-Making Process

    Veteran yearbook leaders share their best advice

    Are you in charge of yearbook this year? Congratulations! Yearbooks are such a cherished, important part of capturing school memories. Below, veteran yearbook leaders share their best advice for managing the yearbook process.

    1. Let the students lead

    "I think it is absolutely critical for any yearbook group to be student-led with staff support, not the other way around. As an adult, it’s easy to pick up the slack, but that takes the process out of kids’ hands where it belongs. A stunningly beautiful yearbook is, of course, our goal, but a meaningful and fun process will be far more memorable in the end." –Sarah Keezing Gay

    2. Take the time to prep properly

    "Students will want to jump right in, but take some time to do team-building, teaching about mission statements, and understanding the overall vision. More direction and cohesion before you get into the content will really help the process overall." –Jess Atkinson

    3. Try an icebreaker to kick off the process

    "When I was yearbook advisor, I always began the school year by having the kids start taking candid pictures right away. I would give students about 15 minutes, and they would enthusiastically roam the hallways snapping away. Then, as we viewed the photos, we’d all discuss the pictures and talk about possible captions. This was a great way to start building a bond with the students." –Jan Hudson

    4. Make it an extracurricular students want to be a part of

    "If you want to get students involved but don’t have a designated class, organize it as an extracurricular group. I run a yearbook group that meets weekly, and students can sign up to work on the areas or sections they choose. Then, at the beginning of the year, we’ll hold training sessions for students so they can come in and learn the tools they need." –Sarah Keezing Gay

    5. Study other yearbooks before you dive in

    "This is such an important process. Take time to look through old yearbooks, and ask questions. What types of layouts do you want to do? How do you want to organize overage? What kind of new content do you want to share? Ask students these questions, and encourage them to think about the entire process." –Jess Atkinson

    6. Don’t be afraid to use (or nag) the resources you have

    "Use your yearbook company to help and ask questions. They should be one of your biggest supporters—that’s what they’re there for." –Katie Brown

    7. Recruit student photographers

    "Just because a student isn’t interested in yearbook doesn’t mean they can’t help in some way. Recruit students who are interested in photography even if they’re not interested in joining yearbook. They might just like taking photos or posting on Instagram a lot. I promise you will always need more photos!" –Jess Atkinson

    8. Set up a creative space

    "I made the yearbook room a fun place to be with bright and colorful posters and funky décor. We always had music playing, which made for a relaxed work environment."  –Jan Hudson

    9. Tell stories

    "Photos are great, but don’t forget to use them as tools to tell the stories of your school. Have students talk to or interview staff or students. Having authentic and real stories to go along with the photos will really make it a better product." –Jess Atkinson

    10. Target parent groups for their help

    "Ask parent booster organizations for their support in creating photos, write-ups, or information for their section. For instance, if you have parent groups that support sports teams or drama clubs, ask for their photos. These groups will often have their own websites or group pages. This will also help bring a wider range of voices to the yearbook and save on work." –Sarah Keezing Gay

    11. Always stay two steps ahead

    "The hardest part is keeping up with enough work for kids to do on their own. Remember that students can spend a good amount of time on writing up names of team pictures, making sure all the names are spelled correctly and that everyone is listed. Just have the work prepped and ready to make the best use of time." –Annie Brtitschge

    12. Bring in a guest speaker

    "Ask the local newspaper editor, photographer, or a staff member if they would consider a couple of mentor sessions. They can talk to the kids about photos and what makes a picture usable." –Kelly Brown

    13. Get the entire school involved by offering rewards

    "Our teachers get their classrooms involved by inviting students to help with tasks and challenges we give. And for this, competition works really well! We offer rewards for the best cover, opening message, best page to capture a classroom project, and more. We don’t ask the teacher to give up instructional time. Rather, we give basic activities like writing challenges that they can incorporate into their curriculum." –Sarah Keezing Gay

    14. Do not…absolutely do not…leave proofreading to the end

    "It’s easy to put this off until the very end when the book is about to go to the printer, but you can have more mistakes this way. Try to put a process in place so that you have multiple people proofreading along the way. If you can streamline and focus your process, you’ll have more time to do it thoroughly." –Jess Atkinson

    15. Leave the tracking up to your students

    "It’s important to make sure all groups and students are represented as best as possible. Ask your students to track patterns, identify their peers who are over- or underrepresented, and guide you towards sources of images for students who don’t show up in as many event or group photos." –Sarah Keezing Gay

    16. Take it one day at a time

    If it’s your first time doing yearbook, focus on getting through the first year, and don’t be too hard on yourself the first time around. I recommend following basic layouts similar to previous years while you get to know the process. There’s a big learning curve when you’re just getting started, so don’t

    Posted by Stacy Tornio

    Posted by Stacy Tornio Stacy Tornio is a freelance writer with a focus on education. She's an author of nearly 20 books, including many educational family titles. Nearly everyone in her family is a teacher. So she decided to be rebellious and write about teachers instead.


    15 Great Yearbook Theme Ideas You’ll Want to Steal

    15 Great Yearbook Theme Ideas You’ll Want to Steal

    It’s time to add some fun and life into your school yearbook!

    If you’ve decided to take part in the crazy, stressful, really rewarding but really time-consuming world of building a school yearbook, congratulations—you must be very brave. Here are some of the coolest yearbook themes we’ve seen around the internet to give you some inspiration!

    1. Superheroes are Always a Good Idea

    Source: Remember Me Yearbooks

    This style capitalizes on the current trend of comic books being made into blockbuster movies. From Wonder Woman to Iron Man, every student in your school can find a hero of their own.

    2. Quotes Galore

    Whether you get quotes from the student body or just create inspirational messages for the students as a yearbook team, this theme is very popular right now. Giving your student body the chance to add something personal to the yearbook is a way to make it more meaningful and important to every student.

    3. Emojis Everywhere

    Source: Remember Me Yearbooks

    Our students are communicating with emojis more than ever, so why not create a yearbook theme that they’ll readily identify with? The possibilities of fun pages, great action shots with hysterical captions, and using real and invented emojis are endless!

    4. A Love of Literature

    Source: By Scatterbrain

    Got a novel or poem that every student in school has to read? Look to it for inspiration! Students will love a “stay gold” or “to thine own self be true” theme that relates to them and reminds them of a little bit of the work they did in school.

    5. Gamify It

    Nostalgia and yearbooks go together like bacon and eggs. Peanut butter and jelly. Study hall and sleep! Play off of your students’ fond memories of game nights and slumber parties with a yearbook homage to the board games they grew up playing. We found inspiration from this classroom door, but we know you can use this great idea for a yearbook theme, too!

    6. Star Light, Star Bright

    Source: Remember Me Yearbooks

    It’s a classic for a reason—you really can’t go wrong comparing your students to stars. They’re bright. They’re beautiful. And a yearbook is often the one place where every student gets a moment or two to shine.

    7. Watercolor Magic

    Source: Remember Me Yearbooks

    Watercolor art is big right now. It’s popping up on clothing, in art projects around school, and in decorations on school walls. So it’s only logical to consider it for a yearbook theme. The colors are beautiful and versatile. The theme can be mature or whimsical. And, perhaps best of all, it’s a theme that looks fabulous without a lot of fuss. This is perfect for the yearbook editor who needs to pull together a cohesive draft in a hurry!

    8. Let Your School Inspire

    Have amazing artists in your building? Consider your school’s murals and student art work as a possible theme throughout the book. You can read this school’s story below for some added inspiration. Have students submit their own proposals for art for the cover of your school’s yearbook and let it truly be something they created.

    9. Confetti and Kindness

    Source: Source: acupcakefortheteacher

    Confetti is another easy but versatile design idea, and kindness is a wonderful theme. (Yes, we’re throwing in two ideas here.) Think about how much fun your students can have incorporating these two ideas together throughout the yearbook. Confetti makes a fun design idea, and kindness will inspire lots of relevant quotes to include throughout the yearbook.

    10. A Fairy-tale Ending

    Feel like doing something a bit “outside the box”? A fairy-tale yearbook theme might be worth looking into. Fairy-tale themed proms have been popular recently, so why not capitalize on your students’ love for classic stories of good overcoming evil and heroes and heroines risking it all for what is right? We all know yearbooks tell a story—but this theme will help you take that to a new level.

    11. Classic and Cool

    Source: Remember Me Yearbooks

    If you feel your school wants a more traditional feeling yearbook, have no fear. There are lots of beautiful options that keep it classic but modern.

    12. Inspiration from Dr. Seuss

    Dr. Seuss has always been a source of great wisdom. For this theme, we suggest featuring Dr. Seuss quotes and ideas inspired by him. Combined with a colorful, whimsical design, it’s sure to be a hit. (Remember, you can’t use his art because it’s copyrighted, but you can still use quotes, designs influenced by him, and Dr. Seuss-like color schemes!)

    13. A Nod to Social Media

    There’s no denying that social media apps have played a large part in many of our students’ day-to-day lives. Choosing a yearbook theme that acknowledges this will poke friendly fun at the apps that they’ve spent so much time on, while reminding them even if they’ve Snapchatted a lot of photos, the ones in the yearbook are the ones that will last.

    14. Celebrating Future Travels

    Travel and journeys are common yearbook themes—and for good reason. The class that is graduating (and the underclassmen as well) have been on a journey together. They’ve grown up, learned and explored, and are now facing the next chapter of their lives. Celebrate this experience with a yearbook theme using quotes and designs that remind them of how far they’ve gone already and all the exciting adventures still to come.

    15. Fun with Animals

    There’s a reason animal photos and videos dominate social media: Students love them! You can find so many great (and funny) animal photos out there on stock sites. Or have your students gather photos for the school! You don’t have to give the animals center stage, but using a photo here and there or along the bottoms of pages can really make for a fun, engaging yearbook experience.

    Posted by Meghan Mathis

    Meghan is an Associate Editor at WeAreTeachers. She spent 18 years teaching English/Language Arts in the public school setting and holds a Master's Degree in Special Education.


    Welcome back to School!

    Welcome back to School!

    Classrooms are set up, the first day of school pictures have been taken and now is the perfect time to start the yearbook. If you're a first-time adviser or a veteran, below are a few tips to get you started.

    Create your Committee

    Ask teachers and parents to help with the yearbook. Don't feel the need to take on the whole yearbook by yourself. Create different committees to help take photos, design the book and sell it to students and families.

    Get Organized

    After you have created your committee, now is the time to assign user roles for who is responsible for specific pages of the book. If you have a sports-minded member, let them lay out the sporting groups. Creating your student people pages is a great task for the individual who is short of time but would still like to be a part of your team.

    Create a Page Ladder

    Before you start designing your yearbook, creating an outline can help make the work easier! Whether it's a traditional or chronological ladder, this will set the tone for the layout. Download our free Page Ladder or learn how to create the ladder online!

    Set Sales Goals

    Create your yearbook budget to know exactly how much money you need to raise. Some schools use the yearbook as a fundraiser, while others choose to pass any savings along to their families. The key is ensuring you sell enough books to pay for the order.

    Pick a Theme

    Selecting a yearbook theme and cover is a great way to showcase your school's spirit and give your book a cool look! Every book should have a theme. This will provide your book with creative direction. Whether you use one of ours or create your own, it will allow you to show your school's personality.

    Start Selling

    In today's busy world, it's best to start selling your yearbook sooner than later. We suggest starting sales at the beginning of the school year. When you use our online parent storefront, we can turn your sale on, set your price and start collecting yearbook pre-sales in a matter of minutes. This is easy to use for advisers and parents. Plus, all the money is applied to your account, and we do not charge your school or your families any transaction fees!

    Promote and Sell the Yearbook

    Send emails and order forms home to parents so they can pre-order the book. Set up tables at the different school events dedicated to selling the yearbook. You work really hard and spend hours creating a beautiful yearbook. Don't forget to tell everyone the book is on sale. We get many calls each year from families not realizing the book was on sale to order the book.

    Take Lots of Pictures

    The yearbook is the reflection of your school. All the hard work, your teachers and staff, should be reflected in this timepiece. There are many fun activities in the first month of school and throughout the whole year. Don't miss a moment.

    Know your Portrait Photographer

    It's best to work with a school photographer who is knowledgeable and understands that your organization is creating a yearbook. Make sure they know to create your portraits in a PSPA format. This will make flowing your people pages a snap. Your PSPA can be uploaded directly to the Remember Me Creation tool for easy portrait flowing.

    Have Fun!

    The yearbook is more than just an archive for the School. It's your School's story to share with the world!

    Remember Me offers a wide variety of Helps and Tips on making the yearbook a fun and easy. If you would like to learn more about yearbooks, please let us know. We would love to help you and your school make a beautiful book.

    Call 888-383-2292 or email


    15 Clever Pages and Ideas to Make Your Yearbook a Little Extra

    15 Clever Pages and Ideas to Make Your Yearbook a Little Extra

    Make your yearbook truly memorable

    Producing a yearbook seems pretty straightforward, right? You include a page for each class, staff pics, organization and club pages, and a few spots for special events. That’s pretty much the standard for most school yearbooks. But sometimes standard means forgettable. Why not take it up a notch and make a yearbook that really captures the spirit of your school? Here are some fun ideas for creative yearbook pages that will take your yearbook from perfect for the closet shelf to coffee-table-book material.

    1. Get to know your staff with fun facts.

    Source: Conversations in Literacy

    Students see their teachers every day, yet there are probably plenty of things they don’t know about them. Do they know that their music teacher is in a Prince cover band or that their gym teacher used to be a professional Muay Thai fighter? This yearbook page is meant to bring out interesting and little-known facts about your teachers. Maybe they’ll share their favorite song to rock out to or a fun fact about their own school days.

    2. Create a page just for support staff. 

    Source: Remember Me Yearbooks

    You’ll definitely see pictures of teachers in the yearbook, but what about the other staff around the school? Do you feature your custodial staff in the yearbook? How about the lunch workers? These are often people your students see every day (and adore), so give them a page in the yearbook. It’s a great way to acknowledge them and show your appreciation for all of the things they do.

    3. Have a favorite quotes page.

    Source: Math and Milkshakes

    Including quotes—inspirational or otherwise—isn’t just for high school seniors. Sprinkle positive quotes throughout or have a spread dedicated to them. If your yearbook has a theme, you can definitely make your quotes align with it. Or get your students involved in picking inspiring quotes they want in their yearbook. They could even vote on which ones to include. 

    4. Share the top moments from the year

    What was the year’s most popular song? The best movie? Were there any big moments, like a space exploration or new records at the Olympics? Did the hottest celebrity couple finally tie the knot? What student represented your school at the district spelling bee? What about the newly minted chess master among your student body? Capture some of these moments, big and small, and feature them on a single page. This will be an awesome page for students to look back on. 

    5. Include a page for autographs

    Source: Remember Me Yearbooks

    Autograph pages are a must for any yearbook. You’ll likely have some blank pages at the beginning and end of your yearbook, but creating special autograph pages is even better. These pages are easy to design, and you can have as many as you want. 

    6. Highlight student trends

    You know that dance video that went viral? Or that trend that everyone seemed to be into? The slang that got so popular the principal started using it during morning announcements? Preserve these great moments by including them in the yearbook. Whether the trends stick around for a few months or a few years, kids will love being reminded of them. 

    7. Create a special area for your upcoming graduates

    Source: Remember Me Yearbooks

    There’s something special about finally being in the top grade and earning a few special privileges. Yes, this is usually done for high school seniors, but you could also do it for fifth and eighth graders. Give your fifth graders a special section in the elementary school yearbook or eighth graders one in the middle school book. Make it an honor for students to be featured here and be sure to trumpet their accomplishments and goals.

    8. Leave a spot for special messages from family, friends, or teachers

    If you’re looking for a fundraising opportunity, you can sell spots or messages in the yearbook. Family and friends love honoring their students in this way. If this doesn’t work for your school, then just give the platform to teachers instead. Let each teacher include a special message in this section, giving your students something to look forward to and take with them. 

    9. Create space that is meant to be written in

    Source: Remember Me Yearbooks

    These pages encourage students to capture fun little details about themselves. They will love looking back when they’re older to do a little “remember when” about their younger years.

    10. Share cool facts about your school

    When was your school built? What’s the history of the school or the community? It might seem like everyone knows these facts or that they get redundant, but they don’t. It’s great information to have in a yearbook and helps your students really know and appreciate their school. 

    11. Feature a surveys page, using answers from students

    Source: Proud to Be Primary 

    Similar to the quote page, you can feature student responses to surveys. Cats or dogs? Ariana Grande or Demi Lovato? Pizza or tacos? Favorite Crystal Gem? Mountains or beach? You can do surveys throughout the year and gather student responses. This page is great because it allows the entire school to be represented on a single page. 

    12. Have each class write one thing they learned during the year

    This one is fun to do as a class. What’s one thing each class can say they learned this year? Challenge them to write it as a single sentence or fact. “This year we learned _____________.” This page will educate others while highlighting some of the hard work students did during the year.

    13. Showcase student art

    Source: The Art of Education

    There are lots of pictures in the yearbook, but does yours feature any art? If you’re able to give a space to great art projects by your students, your yearbook will have some really pretty pages. You could even turn this into an annual contest, where students get the chance to have their art featured prominently in the yearbook. 

    14. Have a bloopers page

    Be careful with this page; you don’t want to embarrass anyone. Done correctly, this page will quickly become one of your most popular. Ask your teachers if they have any good bloopers they’ll share. For instance, maybe they tried a Pinterest project and it just didn’t turn out. This might take some brave people to submit for this page, but the results will truly be memorable. 

    15. Ask students to answer a question with only one word

    Source: The Teacher with a Ponytail

    Imagine a big word-cloud page with one-word answers. This could be a powerful (and beautiful) page for your yearbook. The words can be centered on any theme. You might ask students to sum up their year in a single word. Or you could ask them to share a positive word around a theme, like kindness.

    Posted by Stacy Tornio

    Stacy Tornio is a freelance writer with a focus on education. She's an author of nearly 20 books, including many educational family titles. Nearly everyone in her family is a teacher. So she decided to be rebellious and write about teachers instead.