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Basic Book Design – High school textbook from Wikibooks

Basic book design for high schoolBasic Book Design is a textbook suitable for high school students (and adults) all about basic book design. The book is provided by Wikibooks, in the creative commons under a GNU open document license.

As a project for English, art or computer studies, creating a book should be a compulsory activity in schools. This book will help students learn more about the ins and outs of book creation.

For computer studies, students may wish to pick an existing public domain book and reformat the text. Picture books are the best for this since they bring different elements of formatting into play, and different formatting programs may be experimented with.

For English or art class, creating your own text is fun, along with formatting it.

Basic Book Design discusses important topics such as font choices, margin rules, common grammar and text formatting rules, most of which has been condensed and referenced from what is considered the industries’ master reference book, The Chicago Manual of Style.

More About What is in Basic book design for high school

Basic Book Design isn’t another book about grammar rules, freeing your inner writer, or finding a publisher. It’s about making your books, documents, and newsletters look professional.

The book includes features such as:
• Which fonts will make readers devour your book—and which fonts will make them put your book aside.
• Common mistakes that make your newsletter look amateur.
• Designers’ tricks to save printing costs and make documents look better.
• The free software that works better than Adobe Pagemaker, Quark X-Press, or Microsoft Publisher.
• Workarounds to avoid bugs in Microsoft Word.
• When you need permissions from both the photographer and the person depicted in the photo—and when you need neither.
• The government agency that will give you completely free photos by famous photographers such as Ansel Adams and Dorothea Lange.

Note: some software items, mostly those on Microsoft Word, are out of date, written in 2003, there have been significant updates since then (my recommendation, use Open Office 🙂

While some of the contents might be rather advanced for high school, it makes a great reference book and learning exercise, and many concepts can even be taught to younger audiences in upper elementary or middle grades.

Suggested projects for Basic Book Design

  1. Format a public domain book;
  2. Create your own short picture book using your own words, and either illustrate yourself, or public domain images;
  3. Create a non-fiction book with images;
  4. Send your book to FKB 🙂 – note, we don’t guarantee acceptance, but if it’s not suitable I’ll let you know why;
  5. Publish your book online (Createspace, kindle, lulu).

Suggested Reading

Find many more books like this one, suitable for high school study or reference in our Wikibooks section.

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Create a Book! – by FKB - This book takes readers through 10 simple steps to creating a book, including software, images, format, and publishing. This book is written in simple terms to be used as a guide by children or as a lesson plan by teachers or parents. If you create a book and want to share it on Free Kids ...
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Walk with Gandhi - An enlightening text on the life of Gandhi, containing enlightening snapshots of Gandhi’s life, with lots of questions for reflection, making it very suitable for school use – social studies, history, art, or English. The Haiku, images, and text reflect the remarkable life of Mahatma (‘great soul’) who brought freedom to India through non-violent protest. ...
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Review our Young Adults section for books in a similar age range.

A Fairytale About Climate Change - Many, many, years ago, in a land far, far away, there lived a beautiful princess that loved ice bears. Everything in the land was perfect, because the citizens respected the laws of nature. That is until one day a wicked witch cast a spell over them so that they no longer cared about the environment. ...
Create a Book! – by FKB - This book takes readers through 10 simple steps to creating a book, including software, images, format, and publishing. This book is written in simple terms to be used as a guide by children or as a lesson plan by teachers or parents. If you create a book and want to share it on Free Kids ...
Billy Boy Comes Home – Billy Boy Vol 2 of 4 - Billy Boy, a failed sheep dog, escaped the farm and found himself in Mrs. Barker’s home for hounds, looking for his forever home. Will he find his forever people? And will they measure up to Mrs. Barker’s strict standards, and if it does all work out what new adventures will Billy Boy have in his ...
Survival Guide – There is Help - This is a survival guide and workbook designed specifically for teens or young adults who may have thoughts of self-harm. The ebook is available as a pdf which you can print and fill in by hand or edit using the pdf annotate tools and also as an editable odg file (Open Office Draw). Note the ...
Word Search – For Clever Kids of all Ages - There are many advantages to a fun book of word searches, for example, a fun, free, no battery game for all the family, improves mental fitness, memory, spelling, and vocabulary, and many others. Try out this word book with 26 x five letter word puzzles, one for each letter of the alphabet. Enjoy the fun! ...
Our Land – Stop Ocean Debris! - Fisho and her family and friends are suffering under the weight of the increasing ocean debris, literally. This endearing story should make you think twice before littering. Sample Text from Our Land FISHO and her sister and brother were getting ready to go to school. After they finished their breakfast, their mum gave each of ...
FKB Book Templates - We’ve created these simple templates to use for making your own book. All are letter format as it is most transportable for print on demand printers. FKB-Book-Template-Simple FKB-Book-Template FKB-PictureBook-white-template FKB-PictureBook-Colour-template The templates are created in OpenOffice- a free program which is available at https://www.openoffice.org. Most books use the Drawing program when there are more images ...
8 Exciting Games and Activities to Teach Kids Digital Literacy and Safety - Tutor John W of DoMyEssay on an Easy Way to Teach Young Students Digital Literacy - Want to teach kids about digital safety? For freekidsbooks.org readers, we asked an expert writer from DoMyEssay, Tutor John W, to share the best activities and games for teaching digital literacy.
Walk with Gandhi - An enlightening text on the life of Gandhi, containing enlightening snapshots of Gandhi’s life, with lots of questions for reflection, making it very suitable for school use – social studies, history, art, or English. The Haiku, images, and text reflect the remarkable life of Mahatma (‘great soul’) who brought freedom to India through non-violent protest. ...
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