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Yearbooks – Connecting Our School Stories for Years to Come

A Yearbook is one of the most important books you will ever own! Why?

Flicking back through our own yearbooks from high school and primary school is like opening up a time capsule. It provides the opportunity to share laughs about hairstyles and fashion choices, reflecting on achievements and wondering whatever happened to that cute boy or that really smart girl.

It can make you reflect on your favourite teachers and how they brought each and every lesson to life – instilling passion and interest in you that you’re still grateful for to this day.

Yearbooks reflect a moment in time when we were figuring out who we were and who we wanted to be. They’re a celebration of our finest moments growing up as well as an acknowledgment of the hurdles we had to clear along the way. They’re a wonderful opportunity to show our own children what life was like ‘way back when’ and encourage them to make memories with their fellow classmates.

Primary School Yearbooks


Graduating from primary school represents a real coming of age for our children. It’s the culmination of their ‘kiddie’ years as they stand on the precipice of ‘big school’ and beyond that – adulthood. Grade 6 is the last year of staying in the one classroom and having the one teacher so it’s the last time that their schooling will reflect that core, family style support. It’s a huge moment and, despite what some would say, it’s absolutely worth commemorating.

Primary school yearbooks are a fabulous way to have the whole school profiled with a special focus on the ‘seniors’. There is the opportunity for the seniors to include candid photographs, important moments, special and funny quotes and to, of course, collect those all-important signatures at the end of the year.

Investing in quality primary school yearbooks also gives school officials classroom teachers, year level coordinators and administrative staff the opportunity to wish the senior cohort well and to discuss how they helped shape these formative educational years. It’s a lovely opportunity to say goodbye and bid a fond farewell to those who were once tiny preppies and are departing for high school. These books don’t have to be enormous, typically being between 20 and 70 pages, to be filled with value and memory.

High School Yearbooks


High school yearbooks are incredibly important – not only to the graduating class but to each and every single student in the school or college. Cultural clubs, sports teams, home groups and different societies get the chance to find their place in the sun and be profiled in a book that will stand the test of time.

These powerful tomes are the opportunity for the school or college to showcase their achievements in the fields of academia, sporting life and extra-curricular opportunities. The ethos of the school is reflected in lovingly put together pages as the spirit of lives filled in the pursuit of knowledge and personal development is personified through text. It is a chance for the school to say goodbye and to offer their seniors the chance to do so. Individual school photos can be accompanied by powerful quotes or funny quips.

Years from now, students will have the opportunity look back with fondness on the friends that they had, the times that they shared and the pride that they felt to be part of something bigger than themselves.

Something Tangible in the Digital Age

We live in a world of the digital image. It’s a world where the sum of our personal lives can be found in a Facebook photo album or some filtered snapshots on Instagram. There’s no chance for us to physically hold these memories anymore. There’s no opportunity to lazily flick through pages, stopping on certain photos and pages that speak to our hearts. There’s no opportunity to gather around something tangible and feel the weight of our shared history in our hands.

Printed items like yearbooks are the perfect chance to capture this bygone era of the tangible record of memory. We can write messages in pen and read them years later. We can keep them on our shelves or mantle pieces. We can get them out when we gather with old school friends. We can laugh over them during family gatherings and reunions.

Yearbooks from high school and primary school are the chance our children need to experience that old feeling that we remember from photo albums and our own school annuals. This is a beautiful schooling tradition that we must ensure remains for our children. Resist the digital when it comes to commemorating school achievements – tangible yearbooks that we can hold in our hands are the perfect way to celebrate ‘moving on’ from childhood into the great wide world.

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Janine Mergler

Janine Mergler is a veteran Queensland teacher, graduating from QUT with a BEd majoring in Social Sciences. After many years in the classroom, Janine moved on to academia. She has proudly trained new generations of teachers in her role as a lecturer at Queensland University of Technology Faculty of Education. She has also worked in the Queensland Government as an education specialist, developing education resources and delivering community awareness programs to help families conserve water. Currently she is the owner and editor of Families Magazine, a publication specifically targeted at parents who value a quality education for children.  Janine leads a team of professionals who write about family lifestyle, early childhood, schools and education information and family-friendly events.

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