Common Styling Issues in Lesson Plans

In last week’s team meeting, I brought up a few common styling issues that copy editors have noticed while editing lesson plans. As promised, I’m expanding that list here. For more details on many of the items referenced in this list, please refer to the style guide.

Issues we’ve seen frequently include:

  • Lots of different kinds of quiz formatting. The quiz formatting is outlined in the style guide, so take a look at that when writing out quiz questions.
  • Random horizontal rules. We don’t need these to separate major sections (e.g. “Teacher Notes” from the “Hands-On Walkthrough”), but watch out for them because they are included in some plan drafts that were created a long time ago. Please DO use horizontal rules if they make sense to separate sections of content within the hands-on walkthrough section.
  • Capitalizing WordPress specific terms and phrases like “Posts,” for example. Unless a word is a proper noun in general, we don’t need to capitalize it.
  • Absence of punctuation. Sentences should always end with the appropriate punctuation!
  • Misspelling of WordPress. WordPress has a capital “P” and should never ever be spelled with a lower case “p.”
  • Inclusion of random notes. Once you’re done with your lesson plan, make sure you’ve deleted any notes you wrote to yourself as you were working!
  • Absent quizzes. Be sure to include 1-3 quiz questions for your lesson plan. If you’re not sure what the questions should be, that’s ok. In this case, flag that the quizzes are absent before sending the plan to copyediting.
  • Absent exercises. Be sure to include an exercise that would take approximately 5-10 minutes to accomplish. As with quizzes, if you’re not sure what the exercise should be, flag that an exercise is absent before sending the plan to copyediting.

We’ll be using this list to create a checklist for lesson plan authors to go through before submitting their plans for copyediting and for copy editors to use while editing, so please list any additional items you’ve noticed in the comments!