April 19, 2011 / News / Staff Fun

Let the yearbook staff work and play on Earth Day

Written by Elizabeth Braden, CJE

Fresh air, clean water, healthy green spaces – you cannot take them for granted. The place where you live needs a little TLC from time to time. Be thankful for the planet you live on by acknowledging Earth Day this week on April 22. Earth Day is a great opportunity to add to your yearbook coverage, help the planet or have a little fun.

We’ve come up with ideas you can do to honor the day. You can come up with your own. Just let us know what you’re up to by telling us on the Yearbooks Blog.

Coverage ideas

Find out what your school or clubs do to improve the environment. Maybe there is a recycling program, or a club or a class is planting a tree this year. For student life coverage, interview students who pack their lunches to see if they use reusable containers or plastic bags and paper napkins. Find out if any students have gardens and work on them with their parents. Have the urban farming laws in your area changed so people can keep a few chickens for the fresh eggs? If not, find out if students understand the “eat locally” movement and if their parents are following it.

Help the planet

You may be one person, or one small yearbook staff, but there are plenty of ways to make an impact on the environment.

  • If recycling doesn’t take place at your school, research how to make that happen. Use this step-by-step guide to get you started.
  • Volunteer – find out about Earth Day activities in your area and get together as a staff to help out. You can learn about what others are doing and find some ways to celebrate Earth Day every day at the Earth Day website.
  • Plant a tree at school. Check your yearbook funds, or take donations, and help the environment and your school. Remember to find out the best trees for your area and for the best location at your school. Talk to your principal and a local nursery. These steps located at ehow.com might get you started.
  • Work without the lights on. If yearbook class is in the afternoon, or it’s a club that meets after school, you might be able to save a little electricity by working without the lights. While the computers probably use more energy than the lights, every little bit will help.

Have fun

Yearbook staff members need a little fun to release some stress and tension. Here are a couple of ideas from the Kaboose website.

Make pets

Decorate a rock as a pet, a person (yourself) or other creature. First, have each staff member get a rock, from one to two inches in size. Wash it thoroughly. Use acrylic paint, yarn, wiggle eyes, markers, glitter glue, sequins, beads, felt, pom poms or other small craft items to create your figure. Use glue to stick items on to your rock. When done, spray it with acrylic sealer spray.

Your staff can use their rocks as their Facebook profile photo while they are at summer workshop, and can use them when they post what they are doing at workshop on the staff’s Facebook page.

Take a quiz

Kaboose has two quizzes, Are You Living Green and What’s Your Earth Day IQ?  Test your I.Q. on these subjects by going to the Kaboose homepage and scrolling down to find the quizzes.

Practice taking photos

The Environmental Protection Agency has a State of the Environment Photo Project. Starting April 15, go to the project’s page on Flickr to see images submitted for this project. Have next year’s staff plan to submit photos, taking photos for practice.

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Elizabeth Braden, CJE

Elizabeth Braden, CJE, is the former editor of Idea File magazine. Before retiring, she was a copywriter for Walsworth Yearbooks for more than 15 years, writing articles for various marketing materials, and proofreading copy for the Yearbook and Commercial divisions. Her career included reporting and editing for United Press International and editing for Knight-Ridder Financial News. She holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Mass Media News from the University of Tulsa.