Yearbook Academy: Picking Your Yearbook Theme

yearbook academy picking a theme


The first step in picking a theme: brainstorm. Think of ideas and phrases that pop into your head, or check out Herff Jones’ list of more than 7,000 themes. At some point, you will need to narrow down your options, idea-by-idea, to find a theme that fits your school, this year.


A great way to get started is to download the Dream your Theme booklet and have each staff member or group complete the activity to get their gears turning, and then share with the rest of the staff. You could write all ideas on the board, and have the staff vote for their absolute favorites. Once you have those determined, split up your staff and have them take top theme contenders and complete the “Developing your Theme” activity in the Dream Your Theme booklet.

What ideas come about for the look or design of the book?

How will it support your book’s coverage?

What type of section spinoffs can come from each theme idea?

Even after sharing all ideas, let them rest for a couple days before making a final decision.

Consider the five R’s that confirm the impact of your theme idea:

  • Is your theme RECOGNIZABLE?
  • Is your theme REPEATABLE?
  • Is your theme RELEVANT?
  • Is your theme REFRESHING?
  • Is your theme REALISTIC?

*If want access to watch them all, visit the Yearbook Academy page and log in with your HJ credentials. Not yet a Herff  Jones customer? Click here to gain access to the entire collection of Yearbook Academy videos.

Herff Jones Yearbooks

Herff Jones Yearbooks

We inspire creativity, celebrate great yearbook design and marvel at the amazing storytelling capabilities of yearbook staffs near and far. BY YOUR SIDE.
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