Week 14: Canva

Have you ever wondered how people create cute flyers, social media graphics, presentations or even business cards?  Personally, I use Photoshop nearly every day, but it is NOT for everyone. Let's be honest. Because of the high cost and high learning curve, it's not even really for MOST!

Canva is a web-based graphics design tool for the non-professional graphic designer. There are lots of great design templates that allow you to quickly create a poster, Facebook Cover photo, Instagram photo, business card, YouTube Channel art or more. If you don't see what you want, use custom dimensions to create exactly what you need. The drag-and-drop method makes it super easy to combine images, graphics, and text into a masterpiece ready for print or web.

Getting Started

  1. Go to Canva.com
  2. Create a new account using Facebook, Google, or your email address
  3. Select a template design (just click!)
  4. Using the layouts, text, and background tools on the left, start designing!

Click through the pictures below to see it step-by-step.

Tutorials & Design School

Canva is pretty straight-forward, so I encourage you to jump right in and start playing. However, they have also developed a really great set of Tutorials and an entire Design School for people who want to learn more about Canva and good design techniques in general by clicking Design School from the upper left corner of your Canva window.

Classroom Applications

Teachers and Students (13 years+) can create ...

  • business cards for a character from a story or a historical figure.
  • infographics to share information about a topic or theme.
  • flyers to advertise important events (parent meetings, concerts, carnivals, etc.)
  • posters with famous quotes or sayings for the room or to post online.
  • create an image to use in Thinglink (app-smashing!)
  • social media images/graphics that support the great things going on in your classroom and school! (We have to promote the good stuff ... no one else will!)

IMPORTANT: According to Canva's Terms of Service, students 13 and younger are prohibited from using this service.  

Lesson Plans for Students 13+

Canva recently partnered with several leading educators to create and share lesson plans. Check them all out here. Here are a few that I like:

  • Historical Infographic - Students will use chronological sequencing to demonstrate the relationship between events and developments in different periods and places. They will synthesize information from a range of sources for use as evidence in a historical representation, and understand that data can be represented in a variety of ways.
  • Mathematical Modeling with Candy - Students will make predictions based on previously discovered information. They will also attempt to model distribution rates of colors of various candies.
  • Order in the Court - Students will recount stories, including fables and folktales from diverse cultures, and determine their central message, lesson, or moral.
  • Scientific Element Fan Page Designer - Students will analyze a scientific element which is found on the periodic table of elements. They will read about these elements, acquiring knowledge about how the elements were discovered and how they are used. They will then create a Facebook banner representing the scientific element of their choice.

Is all of this fabulous-ness FREE?

Generally speaking, Canva is free. There's a pretty ginormous library of free graphics and backgrounds that you can use for your designs. You can even upload and use your own images. If you're after something more, you can choose from more than one million professional stock images and graphics that start at $1 each. I haven't purchased any graphics yet, but if I'd be willing to spend the buckaroo for the perfect, copyright-free image in some situations!

Where can I learn more about Canva?

What do you think?

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