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September 26, 2017

5 mistakes schools make on their theme

Once you commit to your theme and start down the path of making everything relate back to it, it’s going to be very hard to change. Let me tell you a few things to watch out for so get started in the right direction.

Things to avoid:

  • Copying another school’s theme because you think its cool
    • Draw inspiration from other yearbooks but avoid copying.
    • Your school, your students, your staff are all original. Your theme should reflect you.
  • The Generic Theme
    • A generic theme prevents you from being unique and setting this yearbook apart.
    • Ask yourself if your theme could be used at any other school at any other year. If it can…keep working.
  • No yearbook staff buy in
    • Avoid this by having the staff choose the theme.
    • Buy in helps the theme stick throughout the book.
    • Help them love the theme as much as you do – have brainstorm sessions on how to carry this through the pages.
  • Going over their heads
    • Some themes are just too sophisticated for the average reader – the theme shouldn’t have to be explained. Keep it simple.
      Example: One high school used the theme ‘Paradigm’ and it was a flop. Students didn’t get it. People couldn’t pronounce it and after page 2 they stopped reading.
  • Not having a theme or not carrying it throughout the whole book
    • Theme ties your book together, it keeps it consistent and helps readability.
    • It creates a mood or spirit for the year and sets it apart.
    • If you start a theme it’s important to follow it through the whole book, your reader will notice if it disintegrates or drops off.

Click here for our Curriculum Chapter on Theme.