three students sitting at a table and looking at a pile of yearbooks

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Jill Chittum

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Fall 2008

Students readily understand the power of having a camera in hand. They see that it can make people do one of three things: hide, mug, or go on with their business but direct their activity to the camera. I teach my students that with power comes a responsibility to be above reproach at all times. To this end, my students are given lessons in manners and protocol when out of the class and on assignment.

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In my limited experience as a yearbook adviser, I have learned so much about myself and just how far I can push seventh and eighth graders. Let me explain.

During my first year as an adviser, I pleaded and begged, but deadlines were barely met and typos and fuzzy pictures were printed. Then our book arrived. It was a step up from previous books, but it was not their book or the story of their year. It was the way I, the grumpy old adviser, saw the year.

Not fair and not fun, right?

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September 27, 2008 / Coverage / Design / Fall 2008

Advisers can take heart. Yearbook staffs are full of teens creating a publication for teens. They usually will know what is trendy and cool and what is not. Trust them, but give them some direction. That is the recommendation of a few yearbook advisers whose yearbooks, or who themselves, have recently won national awards.

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