One of the great classroom activities to commemorate the end of the school year is to have students create their very own classroom yearbook. Among classroom activities, this fun project is essentially like a scrapbook, where each student is responsible for a page of it. Older students can use a cell phone with a digital camera to take pictures to add to the yearbook, while younger students may follow a distinct format that is set by the teacher.
Here is a quick overview, along with a few suggestions and tips on how to guide your students through the procedure. It’s best to start a few weeks before the end of school so that you will have enough time to complete the project, and so that each student will be able to take home a copy.
- Art Supplies
- Cell Phone with Camera
- 12 x 12 Paper (colored and white)
- Scrapbook Adhesive
Suggested Classroom Activities Procedure:
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Before you begin, it’s wise to show your students a yearbook that was made from a previous year. If you have never made a yearbook before, then you can show students an example of a family scrapbook. There are many examples online if you don’t have a tangible one to show the students. Make sure that you point out details in the book, like how the pictures are positioned onto the page as well as the other elements that are surrounding the pictures. Once you have shown students an example, then you can have them start their own pages.
- To begin, give each student a piece of 12 x 12 paper (preferably a different color) and challenge each student to create her own unique page. Each student is responsible to create a front and a back page. The front must include their name and a photo of themselves. Other than that they are free to be creative and put whatever they want on the rest.
- Together as a class, brainstorm some ideas on the types of the things students can put onto their page. Some prompts about the school year that may help them may be: A Favorite lesson, a favorite field trip, the best book that they read this year, a skill that they learned, etc.
- Give students access to art supplies and scrapbook paper so that they can create borders for the picture or other elements for their page.
- Ask students to not adhere anything to the page just yet, but to first position and arrange what they want onto their page to see how it looks. Once they have done this and are sure that they like the way it looks, then they can glue everything on. Remind students to leave some space near the margin because it will be bind together to create the book.
- Remind students that they will be getting a photocopy version of the yearbook and that you will be keeping the original. This may help them to decide on what they will choose to do for their page or how they will arrange their page.
- Give students the option to use a computer to type out and print out anything that they are going to write. Some students may like that look versus handwriting or using cut out letters to form words.
- Challenge students to a design contest for the front cover and the back cover. There will be two winners which students will vote on in a secret ballot.
- In addition to the student pages and the front and back cover, there will also be several pages spread throughout the yearbook of class photos that were taken by you, the teacher. These pages will be intertwined throughout the book to break the yearbook up a little and give it some pizazz.
- Challenge students to come up with a name for the classroom yearbook. This can also be voted upon in a secret ballot.
- After you have selected the yearbook name and the front and back cover contest has been completed, it is now time to put the yearbook together. But first, you must make a colored photocopy of each page for each student. Then, ask for volunteers to help you put each student’s yearbook together. Use a three-hole punch and yarn to bind the pages together. Once this is done, you can then laminate each original page and bind the pages together into your final class yearbook.
Creating a class yearbook full of memories is a great keepsake that students can cherish for years to come. It is also a wonderful way for you to remember your students as well. This wonderful book of special memories is a great activity to wrap up the school year as it comes to an end.
Have you ever created a class yearbook? If so, what was your favorite thing to include? Please share your ideas in the comment section below, we would love to hear what you did in your classroom.
Janelle Cox is an education writer who uses her experience and knowledge to provide creative and original writing in the field of education. Janelle holds a Master's of Science in Education from the State University of New York College at Buffalo. She is also the Elementary Education Expert for About.com, as well as a contributing writer to TeachHUB.com and TeachHUB Magazine. You can follow her at Twitter @Empoweringk6ed, or on Facebook at Empowering K6 Educators.