Wordpress is a sophisticated “Content Management System” that uses a database to store your content, and a set of short programs written in the PHP programming language to present that content in a consistent manner. In this assignment you will set up a very simple website to explore some of the possibilities for your course project. There are many parts to this PHP “engine”, but one of the most important, and easiest to manipulate, is called a theme. Wordpress themes are potentially very powerful, but they can also be quite simple. You have already explored some of the sophisticated themes available to you in the Wordpress theme repository. We will now go backwards – far, far backwards – and use a trivially simple theme, one so simple that you can easily edit it yourself. The Wordpress Learning Theme is already installed on all your sites. [Note 10/31: please wait a day or two before hacking directly on the theme as I hope to make some updates in the next couple of days]. In this assignment you will:

  • activate the Wordpress learning theme via the Wordpress dashboard
  • make changes directly to the theme via Atom
  • deploy your changes to your Wordpress site [details coming soon!]
  • Add sample content to your site, testing some of the structures that might be useful to the class project
  • Update menus to reflect the added content


You should make at least the following changes:

  • Add minimum 4 top-level menu items
  • Add at least 5 sub-menu items
  • Make at least 5 style changes to style.css
  • modify at least 2 templates

Your website should also reflect some of the main themes that you think are likely to be important to the project website. consult the KCC-UofT Memorandum of Understanding for guidance.

Stretch goals

  • learn about the Wordpress Template Hierarchy and create an additional category template
  • learn about Worpdress Content types and create a new type. Think about what purpose such a type would serve

Theme Development

For details see the Lab page (soon as I get it running!).

In this exercise we will start modify a very, very simple theme, changing the colour scheme and layout of your website’s presentation.