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Intermediate HTML + CSS

Class 1


Girl Develop It is here to provide affordable and accessible programs to learn software through mentorship and hands-on instruction.


Some "rules"

  • We are here for you!
  • Every question is important
  • Help each other
  • Have fun

First Things First

Tell us about yourself.

  • Who are you?
  • What do you hope to get out of the class?
  • What's your spirit animal, and why?

First Things First


Thank you to our wonderful TAs!


Course website:

Instructor contact info:

Today's Project

We'll be jumping into HTML/CSS right where the beginner class left off

today's project

CSS Reset

A block of CSS rules that reset all default styles


  • Some HTML elements have default styles
  • Sometimes these default styles interfere with how we'd like our pages to look
  • Different browsers have different default styles
  • A reset gets rid of these inconsistencies, and zeroes the styles

A reset lets us start from a clean slate

Example »

CSS Reset

How to use a CSS reset

  1. Find one online (Example ») and copy the CSS reset
  2. Paste the CSS reset at the top of your CSS file
  3. Do this before starting any project from now on

CSS Reset


See the Pen CSS Reset - Before by Liz Shaw (@anythingcodes) on CodePen.

View result of above CodePen »

Get Started: Folder Structure

Go ahead and create your folders

Ignore the HTML and CSS files for now

The project folder structure

Get Started: Images

The project folder structure
  1. Go to to download
  2. Open
    • If you're using Windows, 'Extract'
  3. Place the unzipped images in the 'intermediate/images' folder you just created

Get Started: Files

  1. Open your text editor and create a new file.
  2. Save it as index.html in the 'intermediate' folder you created earlier.
  3. Add the fundamental structure (a doctype, head, title and body).
  4. Create a new file in your text editor. Save it as styles.css in the 'intermediate/css' folder you created earlier.
    • Now let's add a CSS reset to styles.css!
Folder Structure


HTML5 is the latest version (version 5) of HTML

All modern browsers support HTML5

HTML5 Benefits

HTML5 elements are more semantic (e.g. compared to <div>)

Semantic means the tag name says what it does

A page divided up into sections

HTML5 Benefits

Semantic Elements

Using semantic HTML5 elements makes it much easier to read, write, and understand your code

It's also great for Search Engine Optimization (a.k.a. SEO) and accessibility reasons (e.g. visually-impaired people using screen readers)

Let's Develop It!

Let's use block-level HTML5 elements to layout our header and banner (a.k.a. hero)
today's project

Why is HTML5 Super?

Interactive Features

HTML5 Superhero

HTML5 has a lot of new interactive elements, including <canvas>, <svg> (example 1 and example 2), and <video>

Why is HTML5 Super?

HTML5 works on all devices

These new features replace the need for Flash videos, which Apple devices don't support
Playing Flash on an Apple device

CSS Image Replacement

CSS image replacement is a technique of replacing a text element (usually a heading) with an image

For example, you may want to use a <h1> for accessibility and SEO benefits, but want to show a logo instead of text

selector {
    background-image: url('images/yourimage.png');
    width: 300px; /* the width of your image */
    height: 300px; /* the height of your image */
    white-space: nowrap;
    text-indent: 100%;
    overflow: hidden;

CSS Image Replacement

See the Pen CSS Image Replacement - Before by Liz Shaw (@anythingcodes) on CodePen.

View result of above CodePen »

CSS Image Replacement

Image too big?

Use background-size: contain; to contain the background within a smaller width and height

Let's Develop It!

Let's use CSS image replacement on our <h1> to show our logo instead of text
today's project

Positioning Recap

position: relative;

position: absolute;

Corraling an absolute element inside any non-static (e.g. relative) element

Limiting the scope

View result of above CodePen »

Property: float

When an element is floated, subsequent elements wrap around it
A floating example

But wait, there's more!

Fixed Positioning

selector {
    position: fixed;

To make an element scroll with the browser window (a.k.a. the viewport), use fixed positioning

Unlike static elements, a fixed element can overlap other elements

Fixed Positioning

Fixed positioning is often applied to a page's header


Fixed Positioning

Setting the Location

Use the top, bottom, right, and left properties to set the location

These values position the element relative to the viewport so that it scrolls with the page

Fixed Positioning

See the Pen Fixed Positioning - Before by Liz Shaw (@anythingcodes) on CodePen.

View result of above CodePen »

Let's Develop It!

Let's use fixed positioning to style our header, and style our navigation menu while we're at it
today's project

The Banner (a.k.a. Hero) Section

A large banner image, prominently placed on a page, generally in front and center

Use several CSS properties — background-image, background-size, background-repeat and height — together to make a scalable responsive banner

Use background-size: cover; to scale the image to the largest size such that both its width and its height can fit inside the content area

Let's Develop It!

Let's start styling our banner section
today's project

Next Week

Beyond Layouts — Shaping Elements, Custom Fonts, CSS Animations, & More Advanced CSS Goodness


If you haven't already, try to use each of the CSS properties discussed today. Next week we'll pick up the pace and apply some cool cutting-edge CSS. We'll also start talking about responsive development!