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HTML Coding for Beginners

This site lets you practice live with code as you learn.

This tag is probably the most complex to remember. However, its most often used in one simple way, as a link wrapped around an image or piece of text content.

To italicize text, use this tag. It works exactly the way the STRONG tag works:

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Note the open P and close P tag, as described above, opens then closes this double tag set. And how the close P tag is preceded by a forward-slash, /p.

Links from the bottom of all the August 2013 articles, collected in one place for you to print, share, or bookmark.

The Visual box is a classic Microsoft Word-like interface that lets people author without knowing HTML or CSS code.

tells the web browser the height of the image.

Here is an early version of this page in a WordPress text box:

If youre wondering, single HTML tags are one tag with no second close tag. So BR tells the web browser to put in a single line break (BR = break, get it?). And HR tells the web browser to put in a horizontal rule or line where the HTML tag appears. Youll almost never have to use the HR or even the BR tag if you author content only. So you can promptly forget these two tags.

tells the link where to go when clicked. In addition to web pages, in very rare cases href= links to an email address, for example, href=mailto:[emailprotected]. Clicking a mailto link opens your default email software.

Back in the dinosaur era, people learned HTML and CSS by simply clicking the View link in their web browsers then Source to display the code for the web page in their browsers. This method likely is the key reason the web became so popular so fast. Anyone could learn how to achieve effects by viewing the source code, both the html and CSS files, and reverse engineering.

While most people freak out when they first look at the source code for any web page, even the little bit of HTML described above will help you feel at home with the code. But you have to persevere, scrolling down the inscrutable code at the top of all web pages until you find the content and the basic HTML tags wrapped around the content.

And heres the same code as it displays in any web browser:

describes the image. Its useful for search optimization and makes the image accessible to people with disabilities.

Its easy to teach students how to create and publish content with WordPress because the software rewards clicking links to find what you need to do.

To learn HTML coding for beginners, here are the five tags you do want to remember:

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Guess what Ill point out next? The STRONG open and close tags wrap around the text you want bold. And the close STRONG tag has a forward-slash prefix, /strong. Notice the pattern with all these tags? This is what makes HTML both easy to memorize and use.

And heres the same code as it displays in any web browser:

See how the EM tags open and close inside the STRONG open and close tags? This nesting rule applies any time you have to combine HTML tags. Get in the habit of manually checking for the open and close tags for double tags, especially with nested HTML tags. And, yes, you can reverse the code: nest STRONG open and close tags within EM open and close tags.

Dont panic yet. Below youll see how all this works in real life.

The Text tab, in contrast, lets you author content with the ability to add tags and other code by hand if needed. Without the editor converting any of your code the way the Visual tab often does.

My son asked this question as he read this article. Good question. The answer is absolutely but you must combine HTML tags in a specific way. You nest the tags, one inside the other, like this:

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And heres the same code as it might display in most web browsers, with H1 coded to be bigger than H2 which is bigger than H3:

Creating content in an online publishing tool often requires zero knowledge of HTML. When hand coded HTML is required, however, you only need to know five tags. Seriously.

These tools make it easy to create and develop software with the ability to validate code, connect to web servers, store code snippets, and other useful features.

If you look at this web page, both what you see in the web browser and if you view the source code, youll see the page title is bigger and different from the next level of sub-head which is different from the next level of sub-head. Based on experience, I use heading tags for both site navigation and content. But both approaches work equally fine.

The two basic parameters, or settings, work as follows:

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The definitive source for the HTML standard.

As youll discover, even the WordPress Text tab does a little code conversion: at the end of each line break, WordPress automatically adds either a BR (break) tag or a P (paragraph) tag, depending on whether the line break is a single line or two lines, respectively. So you dont have to wrap your content chunks in P /P tags. In the Text tab, hitting the Enter key on your keyboard twice tells WordPress to do that chore when your content is saved, to wrap each chunk of text in P tags when you save and publish content.

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This is the most common HTML tag used. This tag is used to divide blocks of text, also known as paragraphs. In HTML, P stands for paragraph. Using the P tag is the same as hitting the Enter key on your keyboard twice.

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Once you feel comfortable with these five basic HTML tags, its easy to find more tags and more information online. Here are a few places to start.

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Here are two programmers who use their coding skills to solve complex problems, from tracking endangered owls in Yosemite to tracking and isolating a deadly virus in a hospital isolation ward.

If you dont know, CSS stands for Cascading Style Sheets. In its simplest form, a style sheet is a list of formatting instructions to be applied to types of HTML tags. You might use a style sheet, for example, to define how much space to appear under each set of P/P or paragraph tags. Or you might apply a color to any text wrapped in the STRONG/STRONG tags. Style sheets usually are a single text file with the file extension .css and they exist apart from web pages with HTML tags and other code and content.

Creating content in an online publishing tool often requires zero knowledge of HTML. When hand coded HTML is required, however, you only need to know five tags. Seriously.

From a simple website activity application written in the C language in 1994, the PHP programming language has evolved into a robust language optimized for web servers and web applications.

This automatic tagging also is a feature in other online publishing tools, as a way to save people time spent coding common HTML tags.

In plain English, your web browser reads the web page, the code and content, as it displays your page. When the browser sees the left angle bracket, it knows some sort of HTML tag is about to appear. The browser then reads the HTML tag, looks for the close tag if appropriate, and displays the bit of content based on markup.

tells the browser to open the link in a new window. Remove this setting if you want to open the link in the same browser. Ive included this setting only to show the easy way to open links in new browser windows.

Double tags simply tells the browser where to begin and end marking up text. The close tag is the same as the open tag except for a forward-slash (/) at the start of the second close tag. All tags start and end with angle brackets, and .

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If youre wondering what CSS is, definitely do not worry about learning it if you only author content. Its helpful to know. However, it is not required if you only write content.

Computer programming is an art, because it applies accumulated knowledge to the world, because it requires skill and ingenuity, and especially because it produces objects of beauty.

One other point with HTML tags: upper or lower case? Always use lower case when using HTML tags in your content. In this article, Ive upper-cased the tags in the content only to make it easier to scan. But my code examples are all lower case, to meet standards.

HTML Code Examples Used in This Article

The difference between the Visual tab and the Text tab is the difference between a car with automatic transmission (Visual tab) and a manual transmission (Text tab). You have more control with a manual transmission but, at times, more complexity to manage.

This tag, like the A tag, is slightly complicated. Instead of settings like the A tag, however, the complexity lies in how heading tags are used. In a mass of content, heading tags are used to indicate the relationships between chunks of content. Headings also can be used to indicate relationships within a complete web page, navigation and content included.

Lets begin with one example of an online publishing tool, the WordPress edit box (or post box) where content is entered. It appears on the Add New Post, Edit Post, Add New Page, and Edit Page pages.

Heres a secret about HTML: there are only five tags you need to learn. And theyre fairly easy to learn because theyre used often. While knowledge of HTML is not required to create content in an online publishing tool, for example, WordPress or Drupal, at times you will need to know basic HTML coding for beginners. However, youll use only five HTML tags maybe ninety-five percent of the time, or more.

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Aside from the five HTML tags, it is useful to know there are two types of HTML tags, single tags and double tags. Double tags use one tag to open the markup and a second to close the markup. For example, STRONGthis is bold text/STRONG is the double tag, STRONG. The first STRONG tag marks where the web browser should start to bold the text; the /STRONG tag tells the browser where to stop making the text bold.

You might notice the IMG tag is a single tag, not a double like the P or A tags. Thats why its called a bonus tag. Seriously, note how the forward slash used in the typical HTML close tag is used in the image tag above. However, the forward slash appears with a space before the slash followed by the right angle bracket, as shown above.

All online publishing tools have the basic elements seen here in the WordPress edit page, a form to edit content, usually with a tab to edit as you do in Microsoft Word and another tab to edit raw HTML, as well as the ability to add the page title, categories, an excerpt, and publication date.

Note how the main topic is Fruits (H1) with Bananas, Apples, and Grapes as sub-topics (H2). The Apple sub-topic has its own sub-topics (H3), Granny Smith and Newtown Pippin Apples. An article about fruits might use this heading structure with HTML heading tags to organize content about each sub-topic. You could achieve the same effect in more obscure and complicated ways. However, HTML heading tags are far simpler to use.

For authors, in most cases, its best to learn enough HTML to help you use the Text tab in WordPress or other editing tool when needed and leave the formatting of HTML tags to the style sheet.

If you do manually enter a P tag in the WordPress Text tab, it will look like this:

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When you learn a new programming language, one of the first programs you learn is how to code, Hello World! Heres the phrase in four programming languages, as well as links to 100 plus examples.

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These guidelines are collected from the internet, with links for more ideas to help teachers and students.

The two basic settings work as follows:

This tag bolds any and all content between the open STRONG and close STRONG tags. Heres an example:

Presumably youve noticed EM tag wraps the content and the forward-slash prefix for the close EM tag?

The A or anchor tag includes a couple parameters, or settings, to define the link:

For example, the site name of a website could be tagged with the H1 tag, to indicate it is the top-most heading and, therefore, all content is subservient to it. The page title would be tagged with the H2 and sub-headings in the content would be tagged with H3 through H6 tags, as appropriate.

This ancient site has all the canonical details about every HTML tag.

If heading tags are used only within content on a page, the page title is tagged with the H1 tag and the H2 through H6 tags are used to tag any sub-headings.

And heres the same code as it displays in any web browser:

These three applications make it fairly easy to learn basic software programming concepts, from block building (Hopscotch and Tynker) to the more sophisticated (but easy to understand) approach for the Codea iPad application.

In the software world, patterns provide a useful way to critique, discuss, and build screens to help people do things online.

tells the web browser the width of the image.

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To learn the basic HTML tags, lets start by describing a typical online publishing tool, WordPress. The WordPress edit box has two tabs, Visual and Text:

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Be sure read two related articles,Guidelines for Student BloggingandTeach WordPress Basics to Studentsto teach student bloggers how to use WordPress publishing software.

Every so often, you might need to manually add an image to content in the Text box in an online publishing tool like WordPress. If you do need (or want) to add an image, or modify an existing image, heres an example of a basic image tag:

And heres the same code as it displays in any web browser:

In the example above, notice how the open and close A tags wrap around the text, click here. The text easily could be an image.

Heres an example of using heading tags with only content:

calls the web URL where the image resides on a web server. If you copy and paste the src= value into a web browser, in this case, the bit, the image will display in your browser.

A university trained programmer, with a masters in computer science and a full professional career, Patrice teaches technology and computer science to kids in kindergarten through eighth grade.

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