What are the influences that determine the evolution of fashion? This is the question that Ms. Kimberly Benett’s Fashion Marketing class was answering while completing a recent assignment which called for students to examine past ALJ yearbooks.
After researching economic conditions, social shifts, pop culture, and fashion trends throughout the twentieth century, students completed a culminating activity inspecting a true primary source, past editions of the Crusader yearbooks. “Students recorded observations on hair styles, popular dress, school culture, and more while investigating the swinging fifties to the grungy nineties. It really is an immersive activity,” said Ms. Bennett.
In addition to relishing over the fashion, a number of students were both excited and horrified at family members’ photos from the past. Hannah Brogan, a Junior, said of her mother, Susan Joback class of ‘89, “Look at that hair. I can’t believe that was how she wore it back in the day.”
Students were also given the opportunity to conduct some of their research via the archived yearbooks on the school’s website. As part of the Union County Heart Grant, ALJ yearbooks from 1957-1967 thus far have been digitized. The Clark Historical Archives site features town history such as local newspaper articles, historical books, yearbooks, and Clark's Fallen Heroes dating back to the 50's. To donate or sponsor the digitization of an ALJ yearbook contact the ALJ Library Media Specialist, Carla Celso (732-382-0910 extension 3155).
Overall it seemed that the project was a major hit, “I really loved this project, my favorite decade to look through was definitely the fifties. I just love everything about that time.” Bella Anastasatos, a Junior.
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