TODAY WAS THE DAY OF DAYS, again. I could hardly fall asleep last night knowing that I would FINALLY be able to hold our yearbook in my fingers. Would it be horrible? Had I accidentally order the wrong size and our yearbooks would only be 3 x 5? Would the awesome price I managed to find mean that the pages would be made out of newsprint and the whole yearbook look like something that someone made in their garage? Did I mess up on the checking and double and triple checking and accidentally spell everything incorrectly? Would they get delivered after 4 pm. and the office would be closed so they would go back to Wisconsin where they started?
Our infinitely patient school secretary, who I had warned of our impending delivery first thing in the morning, called just before lunch that the boxes had arrived. Heartbreakingly, I had to wait another twenty-five minutes for my class to end. In the meantime, she told me, “I am going to peek at one.” This killed me! I couldn’t wait to see it. I waited a reasonable 5 minutes and then emailed her. “Did you peek? Is it horrible? Is it wonderful?”
When I finally opened that box, I was pleased to discover that our yearbooks looked just as I had envisioned them. I had picked the right size. I had chosen the right quality of paper, and thanks to a crew of people helping me proofread, the words are spelled correctly.
This is the first yearbook I have ever made. It was born out of my principal saying to me earlier this year, “Hey, what do you think about your leadership class also putting together a yearbook. “ As bosses go, he’s pretty awesome, and so when he asks you to do something, you pretty much want to give it a go. It was not too long after this that I had remembered someone, somewhere saying something about making a yearbook in google slides.
Jen Scott is a genius. Her slidesyearbook.com website was everything I needed to make a yearbook. She has templates, and our awesome Parent Faculty Club even paid so that I could take her yearbook making course. It not only improved my own photography skills, but you should SEE the pictures that my leadership class took. THEY ARE GORGEOUS. You actually can see a ton of them because we often use the pictures they took for our school social media sites.
Here is the thing. Yearbooks are for the rich kids. You know this to be true. Yearbooks have gotten even more expensive over the years. Many high schools charge over $100 for their yearbooks. My sister and I had to share yearbooks all the time — which is how parents really cut the cost. But thanks to Jen Scott, my leadership kids made a 66 page, full color yearbook and we only have to charge $10 for it. It took a lot of searching on my part to find a company that could put together a reasonably priced yearbook, but I did. Those yearbook companies are a racket. I had to approach many publishing companies gently. “I’m looking to produce a book for our students - a sort of collection of memories . . .” The second that you use the word yearbook — they add $12. My goal was to charge $10 for the yearbook, and that is just what we are charging. The company we worked with, Blossom Books, was AWESOME. We designed the whole thing ourselves with support from Jen Scott’s amazingness, and uploaded it to their website and BOOM, we had a beautiful, glorious yearbook.
This is probably more talk about yearbooks than you want, but my teacher friends need to know this. You can make a beautiful yearbook — soft cover, hard cover — and you can make it for so much less than you are currently making one. SERIOUSLY. You don’t need to charge kids $100. You could make a hard cover book for $30. Imagine making sure that EVERYONE could have a yearbook! Tomorrow my leadership team, who were all on a field trip today, will get to see what months of their hard work has produced and I can’t wait to see their faces.
Keep moving forward,