March 9th, 2018 at Briar Woods HS was another inspirational day hosting the Jostens Renaissance “Find Your Grind” Tour for over 2,500 students from all over Northern Virginia. Students travelled from as far as the Northern Neck to see Mike Smith, Dr. Phil Campbell and their team share their stories. It kicked off with the BWHS marching band welcoming students through the doors and the state championship cheerleading squad tumbling away to get people fired up. Then the dance contest kicked in and it was all over. Mike asked students if they were leaders or influencers along with other challenges about humbly serving others. The day was capped off with a wonderful scholarship award to Ben Kaplan, a student with an incredible story of physical recovery and perseverance.
It’s been an interesting week as I’ve been in an out of schools all week. I’m actually blessed by the wonderful and tough conversations I’ve had with people. Lots of hot topics. Not just one.
Doing some homework early this am, I came across a sample of videos we offer through The Harbor – an invaluable resource Jostens offers all of the schools it works with. It’s been a while since I got caught up (there’s over 100 messages available).
The topics in the messages I came across included:
- Consquences of Bullying (S4 ep.5)
- Tolerance and Acceptance (S4 ep.19)
- Relationships (S4 ep.15)
- Social media (S4 ep.13)
- Stress and Pressure (S4 ep.10)
- S.A.V.E. / Suicide prevention (S3 ep.18)
Throughout my week, in addition to getting yearbooks done, I also spoke with people in the schools about ALL of the topics above.
As a Jostens rep who works with MS/HS kids, AND being a dad & dude with three teens, I’m sharing that these videos rock, cut to the bone and speak to everyone. There’s no better time for your local school to use them if they don’t already.
No need to “Comment’ or ‘Like’ – I just felt compelled to get it out there. Kind of a commercial. Kinda not.
At first the yearbook staff at BWHS faced resistance when looking to incorporate drone footage into their 2017 yearbook. They kept pushing however, and ultimately generated some powerful drone footage that tied the visual with the verbal theme (Blue Hor17on) for the 2017 yearbook. The drone videos are launched throughout the book using Aurasma’s augmented reality app/software. Awesome job BWHS- way to take it over the top.
Falls Church, VA – At the beginning of the 2016-2017 school year, Mary Ellen Henderson Middle School decided to get involved in Jostens Renaissance. By attending The Harbor Conference at Robinson Secondary School and the JRMAC conference at West Potomac HS in December, the MEHS team went all in and it’s been building momentum ever since. On Friday February 17th 2017, the school took time out to celebrate its 100th day of Renaissance. The pep rally included an introduction of the “Spirit Stick” where the three grades earn points through different relay races, participating in activities and more. A reward points system that recognizes positive behavior/character supported by local businesses was also rolled out. Now kids can grab an ice cream or burger from local establishments by doing random acts of kindness and more. The MEHMS parent community is also tuned in and backing it. On “High Five Friday,” the students participated in relays, games and ended the day with Mr. Ty Harris leading them in an encore performance of “Don’t Stop Believing.” It’s refreshing to see this type of activity in schools again and allowing the students to engage in memorable activities with positive results.
Congratulations to the following schools featured in the Jostens 2016 LookBook. Over 2000 schools from across the country submit yearbooks for review, but only 435 made it into the highly competitive publication. The local schools include:
- Paul VI HS
- Washington & Lee HS
- Charles E. Smith JDS*
- Yorktown HS*
- St. Stephens St. Agnes School*
- Briar Woods HS*
- West Potomac HS*
* = First time mention in the Jostens LookBook
The areas National Program of Excellence Winners were also featured in the LookBook.
A mobile version of the Jostens LookBook is available on the Apple Store or GooglePlay.
This week Jostens recognized two wildly talented yearbook staffs for their consistent excellence in journalism. West Potomac’s Predator Staff and Thomas Jefferson HS for Sciences and Technology’s Techniques Staff each earned VHSL’s Charles E. Savedge Award. The Savedge Award is earned by journalism staffs who’ve received a Trophy Class rating from VHSL in five out of seven years.
West Potomac has a history of earning The Savedge Award, and last year the staff was led by Whitney Huntington. Whitney took on the big task of running yearbook as a first year adviser and steeping up to the pressure of earning a Trophy Award when she took over for Mel Mobley. Whitney also advises West Potomac’s WIRE newsmagazine, all while teaching English and being a new mom.
This is the first ring earned by TJSST. Erinn Harris has led the charge as the yearbook and for TJ for eight years. She also advises the school’s newspaper, tjToday. Erinn takes her high energy and expertise across the country every year teaching many journalism workshops.
Winning the Savedge Award is like a team winning a State Championship several years in a row in Virginia.
Jostens covers: More choices. More creativity. More craftsmanship.
The Godfather of Jostens Renaissance made himself heard in Northern Virginia on December 4th, 2015. Approximately 100+ administrators and Renaissance “staffulty” teams from around the region came to hear Larry Biddle roar, shake up and get people movin and shakin’. All for good reasons. For more about Larry and his efforts with Renaissnce over the years, check this out:
Hosted by the always energetic Alex Case and (the World’s Best High School) West Potomac HS, The Jostens Renaissance Mid Atlantic Collaborative delivered once again inspiring message for all to take back to their schools for 2016 and beyond.
The spring JR-MAC is set for Pocahontas Middle School in May 2016.