What to Write in a Student’s Yearbook: The 31 Best Messages From Teachers

Young teacher signing a student's yearbook

Yearbooks provide a time capsule of youth. Pictures of classmates, sporting events, plays, and club activities become memories we cherish as we grow older.

Creating yearbooks as mementos is a long-held tradition. The first yearbooks appeared as early as the 17th century. They were scrapbook-style books containing pressed flowers, newspaper articles, signatures, and other mementos.[1]

By the early 19th century, more formal yearbooks featuring information about the school’s students and faculty were printed. Yale University’s “Profiles of Part of the Class Graduated at Yale College,” created by the 1806 class, contained printed silhouettes of each student.[2]

Class photos and individual photos were finally introduced in the late 19th century as photography became more common.[1]

While students are always eager to sign each other’s yearbooks, gathering signatures from favorite teachers is an end-of-year tradition, too.

Below, we provide a list of ideas to write in a student’s yearbook as their teacher.

Scroll past the list for tips to help you create your own personalized messages.

  1. It’s been a pleasure to watch you grow and change this year. You have within you everything you need to continue to be successful. You can move mountains if you want. I wish you the best of luck.[3]
  2. “Dream out loud, at high volume.” -U2[3]
  3. “Everything is possible, even the impossible.” -Mary Poppins
  4. I know you will continue to achieve great things. Stay true to yourself and reach high. You are capable of whatever you set your mind to![4]
  5. “Wherever you go, go with all your heart.” -Confucius[3]
  6. “This above all: to thine own self be true.” -“Hamlet”[3]
  7. I am so proud of your dedication and hard work. Continue to work hard, and you will continue to achieve whatever you want to be.[4]
  8. “You’re off to great places! Today is your day! Your mountain is waiting, so… get on your way!” -Dr. Seuss, “Oh, the Places You’ll Go”
  9. My wish for you is that you see the light in this world, in yourself, and in others. I see the light in you.[5]
  10. Dream. Believe. Achieve.[3]
  11. When I teach, I also learn, and I’ve learned so much from you! Thank you for your hard work this year, and best of luck with your future studies.
  12. “Just keep swimming!” -Dory, “Finding Nemo”
  13. You can accomplish anything you set your mind to![4]
  14. Believe in yourself, for you are stronger than you know. I believe in you.[5]
  15. A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.[6]
  16. You are an outstanding student, and I have no doubt you’ll go far in [career field]. Best wishes for a bright future!
  17. Thank you for being a wonderful addition to my class! I’ve enjoyed being your teacher. Good luck next year, and enjoy your summer!
  18. I enjoyed teaching you this year! Keep challenging yourself to do your best, and you’ll go far. Good luck!
  19. Take advantage of every new opportunity, and you’ll go far. Thank you for your hard work this year, and best wishes!
  20. You have a bright future, and your best days lie ahead. I’m certain your determination and talent will take you far! Thank you for a wonderful school year.
  21. You have a tremendous amount of talent and potential. I’m proud to be your teacher. Best of luck with your future studies!
  22. Good luck on your next great adventure![3]
  23. Write your own story with passion and determination. Success will find its way to you![7]
  24. I’m fortunate to have had a student like you in class. Keep dreaming big and taking chances!
  25. Continue doing your best, and your life will be full of endless possibilities. Best wishes!
  26. Never forget you have amazing potential.[4]
  27. The difference between who you are and who you want to be is what you do.[6]
  28. Your hard work is bound to result in prosperity and fortune. Good luck for a successful life ahead![7]
  29. Thanks for being a great student![3]
  30. I hope all of your dreams come true![4]
  31. Thank you for being such an amazing shining star! Good luck next year![3]

Tips for Writing in a Student’s Yearbook

Writing a yearbook message can be tricky. Your students are individuals, and your experience with each of them is unique as well!

Keep the following tips in mind when crafting your messages:

  • Keep it short and simple. You don’t need to write a multiple-paragraph letter to each student. Keep your message short and straightforward. Give the students encouragement for their futures, and if you enjoyed having them in your class, let them know!
  • Personalize the message when possible. You could write the exact same message in every student’s yearbook, but the students will appreciate it more if you make the message somewhat personal. Of course, it might not be feasible to personalize every student’s message, but do it when you can! A simple “Good luck!” can be fine, but details will make your message great — for example, referring to the student’s career goals with “Good luck! I know your hard work will take you far as an engineer!”
  • Use humor — but use it carefully! Few things are more cringe-worthy to students than adults who attempt to use trendy slang and jokes. Humor can be a great way to connect with students, but don’t try too hard to sound “cool.”
  • Borrow words! If you’re truly stuck with a case of writer’s block, quotes can make meaningful additions to your students’ yearbooks. Take cues from inspirational, age-appropriate movies, songs, or books. For example, you could use “Just keep swimming!” from “Finding Nemo” or “Everything is possible, even the impossible” from “Mary Poppins Returns.”
  1. https://www.theatlantic.com/technology/archive/2018/06/why-do-people-sign-yearbooks/561851/[][]
  2. https://archive.org/stream/in.ernet.dli.2015.150354/2015.150354.Extra-curricular-Activities-In-Secondary-Schools_djvu.txt[]
  3. “I need ideas for signing in yearbooks,” A to Z Teacher Stuff[][][][][][][][]
  4. “Message Ideas,” Westfield Middle School Yearbook[][][][][]
  5. “Letter to Students From Teacher (Welcome, Farewell Examples),” Write Thank You Notes[][]
  6. “23 What to write in a yearbook ideas,” Pinterest[][]
  7. “100+ Motivational and Encouraging Messages for Students,” WishesMsg[][]

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