You can fine-tune the writing on your yearbook’s sports pages with these easy tips on word usage and coverage.
Whitt and Wisdom
Bring the importance of national and world news stories home to your school by writing about how they affected students during the year.
Even outstanding quotations should not be out standing alone. Quotations are like grout: we cannot leave them out. Grout fills the crevices to make the wall or floor complete, but it is no substitute for tile. Quotes can fill in gaps in a story, but they cannot be substituted for a story.
Once the theme is picked, the next decision involves presentation of the theme. How much theme is enough? The theme does not need to be spread across every page like peanut butter on a slice of bread. Like peanut butter, too much theme in too little space can gag a person.
I recognized a student in my class from a workshop the previous summer. I talked with her to encourage her to try a different class this year. She looked so sincerely at me as she said, “As soon as I went home last year, I got a job at a dry cleaners so I could be sure to have money enough to come back to this class this year.” Knowing how hard dry cleaning work is, I understood the value this student placed on her workshop experience.
For 4,000 people, these are the high school yearbooks. How we make them this year is how these treasures will remain for posterity.
School is real life. Classes are full of students. Some we choose. Some we do not. But as yearbook advisers, we are the adults. We are not to grow for the students. We are not to bend them to fit our images. We are to be alert to opportunities that allow our varied students to develop themselves. The yearbook needs a variety of talents.
We do not just make books. We use real publishing experiences as tools to develop our students. At the end of the process emerges a monument to those students and a one-run edition in the annals of the world.
Each story happens in context.
Consider Gone With the Wind. The story, read and reread because of Scarlett’s passion for Ashley, also shows most readers as much as they care to know about the Civil War. The story takes shape in context.
The same principle applies to a yearbook story. Showing one student’s struggle in context will give readers information about the rest of the school.