Superlatives: Do or Don’t? Creative Ways to Highlight the Best of Your School

Superlatives are a yearbook staple. “Best Dressed”, “Most Likely to Succeed”, they populate everything from your parents’ yearbooks to teen movies. For many, superlatives are old news – a somewhat antiquated popularity contest. But done right, they’re a great chance to let students shine and be recognized for their achievements.

First, consider whether or not your school has done superlatives in the past. If so, what are they? There’s no need to completely ditch the standards that have graced the pages of your school’s yearbook for decades, it’s just time to update and add to the categories. For example, turn ‘Best Dressed’ into ‘Most Unique Style’, or ‘Best Laugh’ into ‘Funniest Prankster’. These are superlatives that recognize your fellow students for aspects of their personality.

Other superlatives, such as ‘Most Likely to Succeed’ offer an opportunity to get to know a student better. A short interview with the student could be included next to the photo and superlative. Sure, they’re most likely to succeed, but what exactly do they want to succeed in doing? What techniques do they use to remain so driven? A short interview can shed more light on that student, while also affording him or her the ability to inspire others.

If you’re talking to the student voted ‘Funniest’, where did they get their sense of humor? What are their favorite comedic films or TV shows? Superlatives can be about more than just a name and a picture by the title earned, they can be a snapshot of your student body. It’s a great opportunity to find out more about the students your fellow classmates voted for.

Alternatively, you can also ask other students what they think about the superlative winners. Why do they think so-and-so is the most talented, the kindest or the hardest worker? Everyone likes to have their opinion heard, and uncovering the reasons behind student votes can be a fun and informative way to jazz up the superlatives in your yearbook.

Remember, before deciding on superlative categories, it may be a good idea to take a survey of the student body. Create a ballot with a list of potential superlatives and ask students to put check marks by the ones they like best, or even suggest their own. There might be a student out there who deserves to be recognized for an amazing achievement, but may not fit into the current categories. Don’t be afraid to break out of the traditional mold.