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Ex2: Basic Skills

Exercise 2:  Basic Skills
This activity takes you through practicing some of the basic skills related to editing a text-oriented website.
Visit to see an example of a site at the end of this exercise.

Use what you've just learned to edit one or more of your pages. This includes a sampling of tasks to orient you with using Google Sites tools.  Due to time constraints, you may not be able to get to the Optional exercises in the Workshop session, but you are encouraged to complete them later. If you need assistance with instructions refer back to the basic skills section:


By default your new website is visible to the entire world.  Since this is a practice site, make it Private.
Click on the 'Share' button.  Then change the sharing from 'Public' to 'Specific People' and Save.


Go to your Text Page and begin editing.

We'll prepare headings to give you sections to practice some skills.  Later we'll create a Table of Contents.

Use the Format menu to add some headings (H2, H3, H4) to your page.

Prepare these headings. Leave a couple blank lines between each heading line. Then to format a heading line: 1) highlight the text, or place cursor on the line, 2) open the 'Format' drop-down, 3) select the desired heading level:
  • Text Practice - H2
  • Lists - H3
  • Formatting Practice - H3
  • Using Toolbar buttons - H4
  • Using 'Format' menu - H4
  • Links Practice - H2

Table of Contents

To add a table of contents, place the cursor above the text, then:  Insert -> Common -> Table of Contents
  • You can use the default settings on the 'Insert Table of Contents' dialog.
    • But you may also try out different settings of parameters. 
  • Position the TOC Right Justified with Text Wrapping by using the Object Position options that appear when you click on the gray TOC object.
  • Save the page. Note: in edit mode objects are gray boxes, and object contents (i.e., the Table of Contents) are only generated in normal pages.  
  • Verify that the Table of Contents is in line with what you expected from the headings you prepared.


Still on the 'Text' page, enter 'edit mode' and prepare some links under the Links Practice heading.  Practice these 3 types of links:

  • Page - prepare a link that goes to another page in your site
  • External - prepare a URL link that goes to another website (i.e.,
  • Email - prepare a URL link for sending email.
To create a Page Link:  Position the cursor, then click the Link toolbar button (it looks like chain links).  In the dialog box, select a page and click Save.  This adds a link to the page which appears with a URL, 'Change' and 'Remove' links to test and adjust the link if desired.

To create an External Link (2 options):
  1. Type the URL into the text of the page.  Highlight the URL text and click the Link button. OR
  2. Position the cursor and click the Link toolbar button.  This time, select 'Web address' on the left.  Then enter the URL and display text.
  3. Optionally check the box for 'Open this link in a new window'.
To create an Email Link.    Follow the same instructions as external links.
  1. Type the email address into the text of the page.  Highlight the email text and click the Link button. OR
  2. Position the cursor and click the Link toolbar button.  This time, select 'Web address' on the left.  Then enter the email address in the URL field and add some display text.


Next create a subpage to practice Tables.

Starting on the 'Text' page.  Click on the New Page button.
  • Name the page 'Tables'
  • For 'Select a location' choose: 'Put page under 'Text'
This places you into edit mode on the new Tables page…

We're going to make the following table:

My Cars
 Car Mfgr.  Model  Year  Color  Year Disposed

Here are the steps:
  1. Start with a couple blank lines on the page, and type "My Cars" 
  2. Then on the next line create the table using command: Table -> Insert Table-> 5x4 
  3. Type the titles into the top row
  4. Make the titles bold
  5. Resize the columns by clicking on a cell, and then dragging the edge resize markers
  6. Title row - if it is still multiple lines high, drag this back to a single line high.
It should look similar to the above.

  1. Enter data for one of your cars
  2. Add a column to the right of 'Year Disposed' for 'Reason'
    • select the right column, then use command Table -> Insert column on the right
  3. That's the idea.  Save page.

Page settings

Notice the additional 'Attachments' and 'Comments' areas at the bottom of a page.  
  • To get rid of them run the command More actions -> Page Settings
  • In the dialog uncheck 'attachments' and uncheck 'comments' 
  • Review the other page settings while you're there.
Practice on one page.

Visit to see an example of a site at the end of exercise 2.

Optional Exercises are available on the back of this page.

Optional - as time permits:

Text Practice

Go back to some of the headings and fill in the sections by practicing relevant items.

Basic Text

Use some of the basic text editing features:
  • Bullet Lists 
  • Numbered Lists with Nesting
  • Indenting and Justification.


  • Use some of the special formats on the Format menu (superscript, code…)
  • Use some of the formatting items in the toolbar:  bold, italics, underline, font, size, color, background color
  • Save the page occasionally to review the final product.

Tables Practice

  • Try using formatted text in table cells - Headings, Bullet Lists, it all works.


Test techniques for copying text into a webpage.
Open a word file or an email and copy a selection of formatted text.
  • Direct Copy method:  Paste the text into the site, then 
    • In Google Sites highlight it and use the Format -> Remove Formatting command
    • Apply Google Sites formatting
  • Interim Text Editor method: Open Windows Notepad (or Mac TextEdit) configured to basic text
    • Paste the formatted text into this text editor 
    • Give it a quick review, perhaps tweak it, then copy from the text editor and paste into Google Sites  
    • Apply Google Sites formatting.

Permissions - Verify Private

To test that the site is now private, open a second browser on your computer.  Then without signing into your Google Account, enter the URL for your site.  You should be denied access.