Robin Williams (not the comedian, a web-designer) has written a book called
"The Non-Designer's Design Book" that simplifies the concepts of layout
into proximity, alignment, repetition and contrast. I teach grade 10
computer literacy as well as art, and I use her book when I do a unit on
desktop publishing (using Word).
I have a suggestion for schools with limited resources. Our computers are
really old, donated through a recycling program, so my son has just burned
copies of Knoppix (a version of Linux) that comes with GIMP (GNU Image
Manipulation Program) which boots off of the CD so I don't have to save it
to the computer's limited space. GIMP is quite sophisticated, containing
many filters and effects, and is not only totally free but open source,
which means that developers are constantly contributing new features. I've
told my students that if they finish up our Excel and Access units in a
timely fashion, we can do some graphics - talk about incentive.
>Last year the principal asked our tech specialist
>to design business cards for all the teachers. They were atrocious. No
>apparent layout, text in every unreadable typeface imaginable, no balance
>or unity - just showing off all the "tricks" he learned on the computer
>but the worst business cards I had ever seen and I worked as a graphic
>artist for 15 years beforet becoming an art teacher.