Monday, November 22, 2010

Pages - Worksheets

One for Mac Users - The most underrated program on the Macs.

Pages is a wordprocessing application that also allows you to use layout and colour to produce professional looking documents. For teachers the best thing about Pages is that we never have to hand out another boring photocopy to our students again.

The easy thing about pages is the templates that come with the program. When you click on the Pages icon the template chooser  immediately opens. This gives you the opportunity to design how you would like your document to look. Use Pages as a wordprocessor or use it as a professional page layout tool.

Once you have chosen one of the layouts your document will open. Each of the design aspects on the layout is there only as a placeholder. This means that you can simply drag a new image or cut and paste new text into the format on the document. 

You can change the size of text box by dragging the arrows on the corners. 

You can change the size of your pictures or even change the amount of the picture you use by playing with the slide bar on the Edit Mask.

All of the colored shapes are added by clicking on the shapes icon in the toolbar. The colour of each shape can be changed by clicking on the small coloured box next to the Font Size box.

Design hints are numerous, but there are some very simple rules you can follow when designing a worksheet or booklet. Like everything else these rules are meant to be broken. The more confident you get the more rules you should break.
  1. Three colours only per page. These three colours should come from any images you have used on the page.
  2. Repeat these colours throughout your design to help pull the design together.
  3. Balance your design. If you have a big heading, then a block of colour may be necessary elsewhere on the page.
  4. Include one (1) large image or if you want multiple images keep them the same size.
  5. Do not be afraid to include text of different sizes. Place different concepts in different coloured boxes.
  6. Stick to one font per document. There is nothing harder than trying to read different styles of fonts on the one page.
  7. Finally, in this age of digital information it is vitally important that our students see us doing the right thing. We should reference properly any material that we use that is not our own.
  8. Use your favourite magazine for design inspiration. Have FUN.

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