Want to get cute photos of your class throughout the year that is quick but turn out cute and cohesive? It’s easy! Let me show you how using an overlay makes it simple and how you can make a whole class set in just minutes.
Candid classroom shots are awesome. I loved taking photos on a regular basis, and even let students be our class photographer for the day. Sharing photos with parents always made them feel more connected to what we did every day, which went a long way in building rapport.
But what if you wanted to make photos of your students that document the whole year together – month by month? For a portfolio, an end-of-year gift, or just to send home each month?
I have got the quick-fix for you. I discovered that using overlays – images with transparent backgrounds – so they can literally lay over (or on top of) my students’ photos is the easiest way do this.
So you get photos that feel personalized for each student – and took only a few clicks to do an entire class load! Let me show you what kinds of cute photos you could take, how they work, and if you like the idea, where you can get mine to use with your class.
What kinds of photos
You can make up to 17 photos for each student! Let’s break it down to see what kinds of photos you can take.
Grab a photo early on in the year
Use a “first day of school” or a “beginning of the school year” overlay. I made both since sometimes the first day of school gets a little packed and taking pictures can fall by the wayside.
(I made grades kindergarten through 6th grade, so any elementary school teacher can use these)
Grab a quick photo each month
Keep the ball rolling and show off student work, feature a special school day or quick candids to take a photo of every student, each month.
To cover the entire school year, I made unique overlays for each month August – June.
Grab a photo for special days
Easily make a cute Mother’s Day and Father’s Day gift with an overlay.
Or snap a photo for the 100th day of school or the student’s birthday!
Grab a last day photo
Finish with the last day of school and send home those cute photos with your portfolios, in with your report cards, or email them later on.
How it works
Let’s start by taking photos of your students. Pick a spot in the classroom, in the hallway, on the playground and plan to call each kiddo over to get their photo taken. That should only take a few minutes, right?
That’s the only part that involves the kids so you don’t waste any valuable instruction time!
On your computer, you take your class set of photos and put the overlay (think of it like a sticker that lets the photo show through) on top for each kiddo.
But, you only have to put the overlay on one student’s photo to get it looking right. Then you can duplicate the photo – one for every student – and simply swap out the background student pictures to make the rest of the class. Bam!
You can print photos or skip the printing and share using your favorite method of connecting with parents (email, SeeSaw, etc.).
How to make a class set
There are a couple of ways to do it. I’ve personally used all of these free methods to make photos in bulk and I can attest you can do a whole class set in minutes.
You can make a class set with:
- Photoscape (free computer software)
- Canva.com (free)
- Google Slides (free)
I’ve found that Photoscape will make a class set in just one minute (seriously!)
PowerPoint is the next most time-friendly solution and might take 5-10 mins to make a class set.
If you like this idea, I’ll give you a tutorial for each of those methods along with all of my overlays so you won’t waste any time trying to get it d.o.n.e. You’ll get it done quickly, the first time.
Tips to take super-cute photos
There are 3 main things to keep in mind when thinking of putting an overlay onto your student photos.
- Hold your camera sideways (landscape orientation), like a traditional camera.
- You want the student off to one side of the frame (not in the middle of the picture). Some months you may want to get an up-close perspective (like the mid-chest and up)
- You want a relatively simple background (nothing too busy or too colorful) since you want the focus of the photo to be both on the child and the words in the overlay.
At some point in the year, I totally recommend going outside if you can and use natural light. That always makes great photos! And I’ve learned that semi-cloudy days work best.
If your schoolyard has a tree have your students:
- lean up against the tree
- hug the tree
- cross their arms as they lean up against the tree
- peek out from behind the tree…
…any cute pose with the child off to one side will do. Those are just examples!
Brick walls, wooden fences, siding, playground slides, and monkey bars are all super-cute places to snap photos with more simplified backgrounds.
There are lots of great ways you can snap photos inside. Want some ideas?
Snap a picture of your students:
- with a writing piece for November
- holding a piece of artwork for January
- showing their leprechaun trap for March
- reading a book for June
Just be sure to frame them off to the side of the picture before you click the camera button!
Hallway brick walls, rocking chairs, dry-erase boards, and plain background paper bulletin boards are all super-cute places to snap photos with more simplified backgrounds.
Kids are always cute or funny with whatever pose they do making it easy to just point your camera at them. Then simply snap their photo!
Want to use my overlays too?
Ready to make them for your class? In my School Days Student Photos Overlays instant download – I’ll give you all of the overlays I made for each month and those special school days.
- First day of school (preschool-6th)
- Beginning of 2023-2024
- Monthly overlays (August – June)
- Last day of school (preschool-6th)
- Special days (birthday, Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, 100th Day – try this one free!)
Plus I made each overlay with different color options so you can always find one that pops against your photo’s background! There are over 230 overlays included.
✅ If you’re not sure how to make a class set, don’t worry. I’ll teach you how step-by-step with a link in your download.
Get yours now!
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What teachers are saying
Now it’s your turn!
Snap a quick, cute photo of your kiddos and make that class set of photos in minutes with an overlay that makes every photo feel personalized.
Get yours today!