Tip of the Week: Setting Image Sizes

WordPress has three default sizes for images you place on a page or post:


You also have the option of setting the image to it’s full original size. You can, however, change those default sizes. This is helpful because you can set the large size to the width of your site’s center column, medium size to an image you might wrap with text in a post or page and thumbnails for preview or head shot images.

Of course you can always modify the size once you’ve uploaded it, but it makes things simpler when the defaults match the parameters of your site. Here’s how to change the defaults:

1. Login to your site and go to the Dashboard.
2. Click on Settings at the far left then Media under that.
3. You’ll see this screen where you can set your new sizes. You can make the dimensions a square (500 x 500) even if the image you upload is a rectangle. WordPress is smart enough to know the largest dimension of the new image and adjust the other dimension accordingly to maintain the proportions:
imagesizesI’ve set the large image for this site to 750 x 750 which is about the width of my content area. Remember that the images you already have uploaded will retain the old settings. Only the new uploads will reflect the new sizes.

Adding a Single Image to a Post or Page

If you are just adding a single image to a post or page, here is the simple how-to:

1. Login to your Dashboard.
2. Create a new post or page.
3. To add the image, click on the small photo icon just to the right of “Upload/Insert” in the menu bar of the post or page:

4. You’ll be asked to browse and upload an image. Find the image on your hard drive then click Upload.
5. You can then set the size and justification of the image before clicking on “Insert into Post”.
6. Once the image is there you can drag it to any place in the text you’ve created.
7. To modify the image, click on the image and then click on the small image icon that appears.
On the left of your Dashboard there is “Media”. That’s where your image is now stored and where you can add more images or documents for later use. You can edit your images here as well.

Picasa Slideshow in WordPress

****Before you start, make sure you have the plugin Unfiltered Mu activated. This allows html code (the embed code) to be placed in your post or page. Click on Plugins in the dashboard on left when you are editing and then click on “Activate” under Unfiltered MU.****

Just when you thought you’d heard all the great reasons to have a Google account here’s one more. The easiest way we’ve found to add a slideshow to your WordPress site is by using Google’s Picasa. Here are the steps:

1. This assumes that you have taken some pictures and moved them to your computer and re-size them. If you haven’t re-sized them, look at the post below for instructions.
2. Login to your Google Account, go to the “More” menu and select Photos. Don’t see Photos? Click on “even more…” at the bottom of the list.
3. Click on “Upload” and “create a new album”.
4. Give the album a title and select anything but Private.
5. Now click Browse and select your first photo to upload. Continue until you have five photos. Click on “Start Upload”.
6. Once you’ve uploaded all your the photos in groups of five, click on “Link to this Album” at the far right and click on “Embed Slideshow”.
7. Select size “Large” and check or leave checked “AutoPlay”.
8. Copy the embed code.
9. Return to your WordPress post or page and select the HTML tab and past the embed code into the Window.
10. Select a category, preview your post or page and click on Publish.
11. If the slideshow window is too small or too large, go to the embed code in WordPress and change the width and height.

Resizing Photos

If want to use photos in your WordPress site, you’ll likely need to resize them. The easiest way to reduce the size of a large image is to shrink it right in the post or page edit window. Just click on the image then drag the bottom right-hand corner toward the center. WordPress will automatically keep the proportions of your image. Click the Preview button (upper right) to see how it looks. Then click Publish or Update to save your changes.

Digital camera pictures can be as big as 3 megabytes. Your WordPress site won’t allow you to upload a file larger than 2 megabyte. And even it it would allow it, you don’t want a large photo on the site as it will load slowly and take up too much space. What to do?  Here’s an easy way on a PC to quickly reduce the size of the file before uploading:

1. Find the photograph you want to resize, right click on it and select “Open with . . .”

2. From the menu select Microsoft Office Picture Manager. Your photograph will pop up in the software’s window.

3. Click on “Edit Pictures” at the top of the window.

4. Now at far right click on “Resize”.

5. You have several options to choose from. I select “Predefined width x height” and then “Web – Small”.  You can define your own pixel dimensions or reduce it by a certain percentage.

6. Click “OK” and go to the File Menu and select “Save As . . . ” and rename the file and save it in a location where you can easily find it.

7. Now upload the photo to WordPress.

Adding a Google Form to WordPress

Google Docs includes Google Forms – Think survey or quiz. Here’s a Step-by-Step:

1. In Google Docs, go to Create New and select Form.
2. Enter a title for your form and any explanation.
3. Type a question (or survey comment).
4. Add the type of response (multiple choice, check boxes, etc.) and response choices if needed.
5. Click Add Item a the top to add another question.
6. When you are done, Select a Theme by clicking on the Theme button at the top.
7. Save the form and then click on More Actions to find the embed code and copy it.
8. Return to your WordPress site and create a new post or page.
9. Click on the HTML tab and paste the embed code in the text window.
10. Publish the form.
11. Wait for users to fill in the form, or better yet, send the post via email (or Subscribe2) requesting users to fill out the form.

You can view the submissions live as they come in (really!) or just view submissions by going to the form in Google Docs and clicking on See Responses.

Once you’ve collected your data, you can post the results in graphic form. Click here for an example of graphed survey results (but it could be just as easily the results of a student quiz): Administrator Survey Results

Here’s what a sample quiz looks like:

Adding Video to WordPress

If all you need to do is add an existing YouTube video to a WordPress post or page, skip down to section A.

A. Here are the steps for uploading your video to YouTube in preparation for embedding it into your WordPress site:
1. Sign in to your YouTube account.
2. Click on Upload (upper right).
3. Click Select File from your Computer.
4. Give the video a name and select “unlisted” at the right.
5. Once the video is uploaded, go to the video link at the top of the screen and follow the steps on the link below.

B. Adding a YouTube video to WordPress
1. Create a new post or page in WordPress.
2. Open a new tab in your browser and navigate to YouTube.
3. Find the video you’d like to embed in your post or page. Click on Share and then the Embed tab under the video.
4. Uncheck Include Related Videos.
5. Select size.
6. Copy the embed code.
7. Return to your WordPress post or page.
8. Click on the Text tab.
9. Place the cursor in the text window and paste.
10. Click on Publish and then view post or page.


It’s ShowTime!

The WordPress plugin ShowTime puts a slide show into your WordPress post or page. First make sure you have Adobe Flash installed and updated on your computer ( Once you are sure you have Adobe Flash installed and updated, follow these steps:

1. Click on Plugins in the Dashboard and activate ShowTime.

2.Create a new post (or a page). Let’s try a post.

3. Give it a title and then in the edit window type.

Feeding the Slide Show

4. In the editor click the button Add an Image. Now, Select Files to upload. Do this one at a time until you have four or five images in the gallery.

5. Next, click the tab gallery at top of the screen. Now you should see all images attached to the current page. The gallery allows you to edit the title and caption attributes, change the order or delete an image file.

6. Save changes at the bottom of the window and then click to Publish the post or page or Preview post or page. You should see the slides come up one at time in your WordPress post.

7. You can go back to the Dashboard under Media and click on ShowTime Slide Show to change the size of the slide show screen, the style of transition between slides, the time between slide changes and much more.

Give it a try!

Uploading Files

If you would like to use WordPress to manage links to PDFs, Word documents or other files, here are the steps:

1. Create or locate the PDF or other document.

2. Log in to your WordPress Dashboard.

3. Open a new post/page or edit an existing post/page.

4. Click on Add Media at the top left of the edit window.

6. Click on the Upload Files tab, click Select Files and find your PDF to upload.

7. Once the file is uploaded (and it is smaller than 2 megabyte) copy the  URL (Web address on the right and close this window (X in upper-right). Don’t click insert into page.

9. Type in the words you want to use for the link to your PDF (e.g., “December Newsletter”).

10. Highlight those words and click on the chain link icon in your tool bar.

11. Right click and paste the File URL you copied. Click the white arrow in the blue box and then click Publish or Update to save your changes.

Click View Post at the top of the screen to admire your link and test it out!