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How to Use Canva for Education

A young elementary schoolgirl works on a school project at home with a laptop.Educators benefit from free digital tools provided by ever-evolving technology. Canva for Education ranks among the most popular tools, providing teachers and students with ways to incorporate visuals into various education-related projects.

With over 60,000 education-related templates, Canva for Education supports the creation of everything from teacher lesson plans and class schedules to attractive posters and presentations.

For teachers, Canva for Education makes it easier to engage students by making the learning process more visual and interactive through innovative information technology.  These materials engage students and provide opportunities to demonstrate learning through creating their own group projects, videos and posters.

Canva recently announced that more than 25 million teachers and students use the digital platform monthly. Part of that popularity is the cost: Canva for Education is free for K-12 teachers, students, schools, districts, ministries and school systems.

What is Canva for Education?

Canva for Education is a free digital design platform created in 2013 by Australian Melanie Perkins. Only 19 when she first came up with the idea, Perkins started developing what became Canva in her mother’s living room in Perth with a desire to make graphic design more accessible.

At the time, people needed high-tech savvy to create digital designs such as those used for logos, business cards and presentations. “People would have to spend an entire semester learning where the buttons were, and that seemed completely ridiculous,” Perkins told CNBC.

She said she and fellow designers Cameron Adams and Cliff Obrecht wanted to “take the entire design ecosystem, integrate it into one page, and then make it accessible to the whole world.”

It worked, and gaining a massive following in both education and business. The design tool is free for all teachers and students worldwide if they meet specific eligibility requirements. Conditions include working as a certified K-12 teacher, librarian, learning support assistant or curriculum specialist.

A certified teacher at a technical or vocational school also qualifies, as do Google Certified Educators, Google Certified Trainers and Microsoft Innovative Educators teaching at a K-12 level. Canva also lists government-recognized and formally accredited organizations that can access Canva for Education, including K-12 (primary, secondary or pre-college) schools, school districts, departments of education and other global school systems.

Canva charges subscriptions for businesses and individuals who use the digital tool. The company is currently valued at more than $3 billion.

Popular Canva for Education Tools

Canva for Education continues adding features to the system, giving teachers and students more tools. Teachers can easily use thousands of pre-made, high-quality templates to create individual projects and set up a classroom space on Canva.

Educators can create projects allowing students to use video, images and design features to demonstrate learning and personalize projects. Canva provides teachers with many ways to engage students:

  • Inspiring post designs that teachers can personalize, download and hang up in their classroom.
  • Lessons that combine the efficiency of well-designed plans with elements that engage students.
  • Creative presentations using embedded YouTube videos, recorded video instructions, images, data and visual elements.
  • Templates for creating engaging and effective parental communications include invitations to school events, student achievements and milestone celebrations.
  • Collaborative tools that allow students to work with other students and receive real-time feedback from teachers.
  • Interactive assignments that are convenient to share, track and review.
  • Tools for creating interactive and engaging school or classroom newsletters.

FPU’s Canva Course and Technology Skills Certificate

Fresno Pacific University specializes in high-quality, online professional development courses for educators relevant to the modern education system. Teachers can access the courses from wherever they live and on a schedule of their choosing.

As part of its portfolio of professional development courses, Fresno Pacific University offers a Canva for Education course that teaches educators how to implement Canva for Education strategies into the classroom and complete engaging educational lessons that meet academic goals.

A student from Michigan who took the course called Canva, “such an amazing platform. You do not even need to be in education to learn so much from this class. I recommend it to any who needs to produce digital graphic materials or videos! The instructor was knowledgeable and insightful!”

Completing the Canva for Education course applies three professional credits toward a Technology Skills for Educators certificate.