We are all pretty unfamiliar with graphic design. Broadly, all of us are simply curious about what it is and how to do it. Specifically, we are interested in how we could use it to enhance our teaching practice. This article gave us a few ideas about how to do so. The article talks about using “C.R.A.P” principles of web design when creating infographics. C.R.A.P stands for contrast, repetition, alignment, and proximity. Contrast is vital in order to make the important elements stand out and the less important elements less obvious. The purpose of an infographic is to communicate information to viewers in a logical and clear way, which is why more important information should be more obvious. The article suggests making contrasts in the types of font, colours, line thickness, spacing between elements, and shapes. The “R” in C.R.A.P. stands for repetition. Graphic designers, according to the article, repeat certain elements of design (such as colour or shape) in order to “develop a sense of organization, unity, and consistency”. Most graphic design tools do this automatically when you choose a template, so this is not an area that you generally have to focus on. The “A” in C.R.A.P. stands for alignment. All design elements should be connected to the others in some way; nothing should be placed on the screen arbitrarily because this causes the design to come across as messy and disorganized. Lastly, the “P” in C.R.A.P. stands for proximity, which is important in order to communicate the relatedness of two or more concepts. Basically, when doing graphic design, be mindful of your creative choices.
The same article mentions that Canva can be helpful for teachers to design worksheets, infographics, schedules, posters, flyers, and more. Below I have included a screenshot of what the Canva website looks like.
I have been experimenting with Canva and had lots of fun creating a concept map for this project (shown below). I am obviously not an expert, but I think it looks pretty good considering how new I am to graphic design! I am starting to see that there are lots of ways to use graphic design in my future teaching practice.
Canva also allows users to be collaborative on projects. For example, if we wanted to work on a graphic design project together, I could just invite them to view my designs, edit, and share their designs. Last semester, we had to make a flyer for one of our classes. My group ended up making it on Microsoft Word and then emailing each other a draft with every small change that we made. If we knew about Canva, our lives would have been so much simpler