Desktop Publishing Skills and Understanding

Desktop Publishing Skills and Understanding (By Phil Bagge @baggiepr) Main Digital Literacy Planning

Remember if I am teaching at your school and you are stuck for ideas if you email me a copy of your planning and indicate which skills you need to cover I will come up with activity ideas. Please give me a weeks’ notice for this.

Skill or Understanding

Skill or Understanding Expanded

Example and Resource Links

Possible Activities

Possible Activities

Create a simple text box


Price labels
Adjectives list
Verb list

Display Labels

Any list of objects

In many different fonts and text colours. One text box per item. What font works best?

Give words to SEN pupils


Are pupils secure with basic text creation and manipulation?

Pupils need to have covered the yellow highlighted basic KS skills from Word Processing Skills and Understanding. These can be taught within publisher instead although the natural place to teach them is within Word-processing.

Resize a text box

Text boxes can be resized by left clicking and dragging one of the manipulation points on the corners or sides of the box


Rotate a text box

Know that a text box can be rotated by moving the cursor over the green spot on a stalk at the top of the box


Format a text box

Right click and adjust the border and background colour and border line thickness


Move a text box or any other object around the page

If you hover the cursor over a side away from a manipulation point and left click and hold you can drag the box to any part of the page or off the page to be saved for later


Find the best clip art to go with a topic of your choice.

Give pupils help in what words to search under.

Arrange all clip art to cover the whole page

Vote on the best ones as a class by looking at each other’s screens and standing by one you like most.

Multiple Text boxes and other objects on any page

Understand that you can have many objects on a page and you can rearrange them to create the best style. Understand that it is not good practice to overlap text boxes on a page.

Search for, insert and manipulate Clip Art

Know how to search for Clip Art, understanding that correct spelling is important.

Know that clip art can be moved and resized in the same way as a text box


Deleting a text box, clip art or other objects

Left clicking on the object you wish to delete and press delete (Del) on the keyboard

Insert picture from file

Know how to insert a picture saved somewhere in your documents.

Understand that you can use any picture if you are only going to publish your work for yourself or friends but that if you are going to publish on the Web you need permission to use someone else’s picture.


Combine images from a trip or class activity that pupils can all access with simple descriptions created using Word Art.

Can pupils find best place on the photo to overlay their Word Art?


Inserting and manipulating Word Art

If Word Processing skills have been done already then this should have been covered


Insert Shapes

Know how to insert shapes and combine them with text boxes to emphasise text.


Create a logo or shield this could be linked to a topic or could be a personal logo/shield.


Format Shapes

Know how to change the basic form of the shape using the yellow adjusting diamond if available. Know how to change the border colour and fill colour of the shape.


Grouping and un-grouping objects

Know how to group objects once you have arranged them as you want them


Selecting, copying and pasting objects or groups of objects

Either left clicking multiple objects while holding down control (ctrl) on the keyboard or dragging a box over all of the objects you wish to select at the same time before copying and pasting


Layering objects

Some objects such as shapes and clip art/text work well together but may need to be layered. Use two pieces of paper to illustrate that objects on your Publisher page have depth and can be arranged in front or behind each other.


Inserting a table

Know how to create a table


Tables are a great way of seeing if pupils understand what you have taught in other areas of the curriculum. e.g. Shapes in Maths with properties as columns.

Know how to format a table

Know how to add a border to a table. Know how to change the background colour of a cell or the whole table. Using a pre-set table style.


Know how to mail merge

Know how to mail merge using an Excel document for information.


Worth linking with Spread Sheet Work