Lesson Plan Style Guide and Glossary

The Training team is reviewing the status of the Lesson Plan Style Guide and how it’s used with lesson plans, and considering if a Glossary might be added. During the January 10, 2017 meeting, some concerns were raised:

@donkiely was concerned about grammar usage, such as while/although
@estes.chris mentioned Oxford commas (serial commas)
@pbarthmaier mentioned post vs Post and page vs Page
@juliekuehl said that “We’ve avoided using one of the major style guides and have worked out our own.”
@chanthaboune indicated that @bethsoderberg keeps the styleguide current.
@donkiely has noticed: I’ve spotted several places where existing lessons and placeholders don’t comply with the style guide.”
@donkiely asked “So the main question is, too heavy handed? Or, too subtle to worry about?”
@chanthaboune said: “I’m of two minds about it. On the one hand, if it’s going to help with understanding, that’s important. But on the other, these aren’t word-for-word scripts in many cases. So getting picky for stylistic reasons seems to be a forest for the trees situation.”

The team agreed that some of these concerns are already covered in the Lesson Plan Style Guide. For example, the Grammar section details WordPress elements as regular nouns, not proper nouns, and the use of the Oxford comma before the final conjunction. The range of topics in the guide includes:

Content: Resources, Tone, Grammar
Structure: Description, Objectives, Prerequisite Skills, Assets, Screening Questions, Teacher Notes, Hands-on Walkthrough, Exercises, Quiz
Assets: Approved Themes, Images, Screenshots, Placeholders, Naming Conventions, Content Colors,
Formatting: Basic Conventions, Emphasized Text, Code Examples,
Accessibility: General Items, Links, Images, Multimedia, Abbreviations

The guide references additional resources for more detailed guidelines:

  • Anatomy of a Lesson Plan (Training companion)
  • Bloom’s Taxonomy (external PDF)
  • Approved Themes list of Twenty Twelve through Twenty Sixteen
  • Theme Unit Test Data (import file from Automattic)
  • lipsum.com (Lorem Ipsum generator)
  • Placekitten (placeholder images)
  • W3C HTML and CSS Recommendations (separate content from styling)
  • W3C’s Web Content Accessibility Guidelines

In general the team thinks that the Lesson Plan Style Guide is complete, may need some minor revisions and review, and that the main issue is that copyediting should check for consistency with both the guide and the Anatomy of a Lesson Plan reference.

Some areas for review are the use of assets, images, screenshots, and sample content, as this is where the context of various lesson plans can enter gray areas and they may add constraints for copyediting or updating the material.

While the team maintains a Training style guide, an external style guide might considered as an additional external reference. However, all major style guides, such as Chicago Manual of Style and Associated Press Stylebook, are proprietary and fee-based for online use. As an alternative, MailChimp has a MailChimp Content Style Guide available under a Creative Commons license and publicly available on GitHub:

This is our company style guide. It helps us write clear and consistent content across teams and channels. Please use it as a reference when you’re writing for MailChimp.

This guide goes beyond basic grammar and style points. It’s not traditional in format or content. We break a number of grammar rules for clarity, practicality, or preference.

We invite you to use and adapt this style guide as you see fit. It’s completely public and available under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International license. All we ask is that you credit MailChimp.

The team was divided about the need for a Glossary to accompany the existing resources, and whether or not we should reference an existing resource or build or own. There are two major WordPress glossaries available that could be referenced as resources:

WordPress Codex Glossary: This document is designed to offer definitions of various terms, exclusive to WordPress, that users may not be familiar with.

WordPress.com Learn Get Lingo: You’ve got a blog: huzzah! Whether you want to be a WordPress.com pro or just need to learn the basics, you’ve come to the right place.

The team suggested that Training inquire with the Docs team for information about how the Codex Glossary is maintained and used. At a recent meeting on January 10, 2017, the Docs team discussed creation of a new Glossary being performed by @normalize. Documentation Team Lead @kenshino suggested that the new format could use a Custom Post Type (CPT) for each glossary item, as they are short and can link to full Codex articles for more information. The Docs team is looking at how this would be implemented in the new Helphub.

Agenda for January 17, 2017 Meeting

The training team will be in the #training channel on Slack later today for our weekly meeting at our regular time: 20:00 UTC. If you can’t make it, please leave us a note in the comments and we’ll include your thoughts and/or updates in the meeting!

1. Welcome!
2. Lesson Plan Updates
3. Copyediting Updates
4. Testing Updates
5. Review of 2017 Goals and next steps
6. Announcements and Questions



X-post: Welcome to the Community Summit Workspace!

X-post from +make.wordpress.org/summit: Welcome to the Community Summit Workspace!

Recap of January 10, 2017 Meeting


  • @juliekuehl needs a few more people to look at the a11y lesson
  • @chmchm has started on the Basic Theme Configuration lesson
    • Do we need a section about how to add menus?
  • @meaganhanes is finishing up Finding Help For Your Theme this week


  • @noplanman will proofread the a11y lesson
  • @donkiely finished Customizer: Static Front Page vs. Content Feed, and Managing Menus
  • @esteschris has finished Header and Background Themes
  • There are a few lessons that have been edited, but are waiting for final review before being marked complete. Post to come.
  • @donkiely will take on the Custom Post Types, if that’s not spoken for. Content Editor Overview lessons for editing


  • @skarjune is going to be using the Getting Started with WordPress workshop soon.
  • @chanthaboune spoke with the Hack the Hood team today to identify any holes in the theme workshop. Updates by 1/24.
  • The themes to test page is up to date as of 1/3/2017

Open Discussion

  • The O2 upgrade is complete!
  • We discussed some discrepancies between our styleguide and what editors are seeing in their assigned lessons. Post to follow.
  • We discussed the possible need for a Glossary (this seemed relevant to @bethsoderberg‘s upcoming post re: content on the site). Post to start discussion on the p2 will follow.

If you haven’t weighed in on goals yet, now is your chance!

Agenda for January 10, 2017 Meeting

We’ll be in the #training channel on Slack later today at our regular time: 20:00 UTC. If you can’t make it, leave us a note in the comments and we’ll include your thoughts and/or updates in the meeting!

1. Welcome!
2. Lesson Plan Updates
3. Copyediting Updates
4. Testing Updates
5. 2017 Goals!
6. Announcements and Question Time

Hi and Happy New Year to all team…

Hi and Happy New Year to all team 🙂

Goals should be small and achievable so we can have a lot of smaller victories instead of chasing a big goal.

We should first create smaller teams or groups ” Development, Dashboard, Themes, Plugins ” in smaller groups with a team lead for every group it will be easier to follow progress and to set some due dates.

As I already told you in Philadelphia, I will need the list of lessons that are waiting since I have a lot of lessons ready.

Goals for 2017

In 2016 we had a pretty clear goal set out for us. We haven’t had any discussions about goals for 2017, though, so now is the time!

Does anyone have something they would like to see from or for the team this year? Put your thoughts in the comments below and we’ll prioritize everything in the coming weeks!


Recap of January 3, 2017 Meeting

Lessons in Progress

Speaker Lessons/ @coachwp
Intro to Common Plugins/ Carol Stambaugh
Basic Theme Config/ @chmchm
Theme Documentation/ @estes.chris
Themes/Plugin relationships/ @coachwp
Theme a11y/ @juliekuehl
Theme i18n/ @danstramer

@juliekuehl should have Theme A11Y done next week


Discussed proposed edits by @estes.chris to Customizer: Site Icons and Logos, Customizer: Header and Background Images. @estes.chris will update screenshots based on edits to Header and Background Images LP.

Copyediting in Progress
Content editor overview (lots of suggested changes)/ @librariancrafter
Basics of WP (lots of suggested changes)/ @patcosta
Static Front Page vs. Content Feed/ @donkiely
Managing Menus/ @donkiely

Copyediting Complete
Web Fonts/ @noplanman
Forgotten password/ @estes.chris
Dashboard overview/ @yvbrooks and Carol Stambaugh


  • @coachwp is working on an after school program for high school students that will start in February and will be using some training team materials
  • @chanthaboune will add the Theme and Accessibility lesson plans to the Ready to Test page

2017 Goals


  • Training Team badges should now be active on profiles. If you don’t have one, let @bethsoderberg know.
  • The WCEU team is looking for someone who is attending WCEU and wants to rep the training team at contributor day. Let @bethsoderberg or @chanthaboune know if interested.

Agenda for January 3, 2017 Meeting

First meeting of the New Year!

We’ll be in the #training channel on Slack later today at our regular time: 20:00 UTC. If you can’t make it, leave us a note in the comments and we’ll include your thoughts and/or updates in the meeting!

1. Welcome!
2. Lesson Plan Updates
3. Copyediting Updates
4. Testing Updates
5. 2017 Goals?
6. Announcements and Question Time


Notes for 12/20 #training meeting

1. Lesson Plans
Juliekuehl is still working on accessibility LP

2. Copyediting updates
Donkiely will do:
Static Front Page vs. Content Feed
Managing Menus

Estes.chris will do:
Site icons and Logos

3. Testing
None to discuss

4. WordCamp Contributor Day loose ends
Please post and contributions in P2

@Torlowski did a lot of reviewing of changes needed for 4.7

Some of that was also caught in the copy editing and reviewing of content

Wait until we have feedback from those two places then plan to review anything that’s missing.

5. Announcements
Names to be submitted for badges