You’ve put the finishing touches on your perfect, wonderful yearbook. You’ve checked for errors once, twice, three times, and then, you sent it to print. Congratulations! But…now what?
As you wait patiently for that glorious yearbook delivery, here are a few tips on ways to use your downtime and make sure that Distribution Day goes off without a hitch.
Organize and Publicize!
Now that you aren’t worrying about deadlines and layouts and photography, use your newly cleared head to get organized. Select an easily accessible yearbook distribution site, create and prepare distribution lists, make large, easy to read alpha signs, check and double-check lists of which students pre-paid for their yearbooks, and think of ways to get the word out that yearbooks are on their way.
Students use social media constantly, so prepare eye-catching, informative posts for Facebook, Instagram and Twitter letting them know when and where to pick up their yearbooks. To really get them excited, include “sneak peek” images from the yearbook, and remember: keep your captions short and sweet, only including must-know details.
Let your yearbook staff design posters publicizing when and where yearbooks will be available. This is another great opportunity to use “sneak peek” images, or a way to include lists of which students pre-paid for their yearbooks to avoid confusion later on.
Plan a Signing Party!
Handing out yearbooks during homeroom will cause distraction for the rest of the day. It’s for this reason that many schools are opting to throw “signing parties” – one to two hours set aside in the afternoon for students to sign each other’s books. Reserve a large common area like the cafeteria or gym, have your staff set up tables with alpha signs and a table for students who pre-paid for their books. To make it extra fun, sell sodas, snacks and colored ink pens, have an iTunes playlist blasting tunes, and even set up a projector to project yearbook images on a wall.
Create QR Content!
Hopefully, you included some QR codes in your yearbook to allow students to access expanded coverage of events. Now is a great time to prepare that content! Make online videos and slideshows to link to the codes in your book so students can scan with their smart phone and view the bonus content!
Improve and Prepare!
Use this downtime to make next year’s yearbook even better. Recruit new staff members, remembering to include teacher recommendations, staff applications and interviews to select the cream of the crop.
Join organizations such as the National Scholastic Press Association and order a critique. Use the results to critique last year’s yearbook and make notes on how to improve next year’s book. Not quite ready to join? Download PYB’s critique form and do a self-critique.
Invite guest speakers. Have a local journalist, graphic designer or the photo editor of the local newspaper visit your class and talk about his or her work. This is a great way to inspire students to take yearbook more seriously and do their best work.