Here are some great ideas to help you plan a cover contest, plus some new fresh ideas that will help your students voice their opinion about this very important yearbook task.
FIRST THINGS FIRST
For example, if your school has a logo that is used on correspondence, you will want to check with your contact about whether it should be included in the cover and how they can share the logo with you. Also, it’s great to have a contact at the school to help you with the contest. Great places to start are the art teacher, computer teacher, or a parent coordinator. Find out if they are willing to help you spread the word about the contest, and also ask them if they would be willing to be judges.
LET'S DO IT
Also be sure to include the deadline on the requirements. Always allow a few extra days from when the actual cover deadline is and when the deadline is for the students. There will always be a few stragglers when it comes to submitting cover ideas. Make sure you specify whether you want original artwork or whether they can use online graphics and clipart and what the art dimensions should be.
SHOUT IT FROM THE ROOFTOPS
Once the winner is selected, decide what to do with all of the other submissions. Maybe they could be hung outside the art room or displayed elsewhere for visitors and students to view.
In fact, we worked with one school where they coordinated the yearbook voting with the 5th grade school curriculum. The students were learning about voting near election day, and they had their own “voting day” in school to pick the winning yearbook cover. The students loved being involved in the process.
With a traditional cover contest, there can only be one winner and some students may be upset that their artwork isn’t selected for the cover. If you do a yearbook cover contest created with School Annual’s themes and graphics, not only will the students not get upset if their submission isn’t picked, but the cover that is selected can end up coordinating with one of the many great themes already available.
For example, there are a few different Emoji covers (which are trendy right now). Try adding your school logo to a few and see how it looks, but make sure to have a few different ideas.
You could even select one of the existing covers from School Annual to include in your contest, like the Super Hero cover or one with an inspirational quote. You might be surprised by what your students select as the winner. We have heard from a few schools that did their cover contests this way, and they were surprised by the cover design the students chose. Again, you may want to limit this voting to the highest grade (since they are the graduating class) as a special treat for them.
STEP UP YOUR GAME
To be respectful (as not all students will have money to contribute to the voting), make sure to set up another way for students to vote via paper ballot or bingo chips so they can submit their vote in the jug as well. Any money raised can go back into the school yearbook fund. You can use these funds to buy yearbooks for the teachers of the graduating class, or a copy for the school principal (you decide!).