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Modifying existing templates

From: WordPress 3: Building Child Themes

Video: Modifying existing templates

Just like with the stylesheet, you can add modified template files to your child theme to change or add to the original template in the parent theme. But unlike the stylesheet, you don't just add a file with your changes. When you modify or add to an existing template file in a child theme, you replace the original template file. Let me give you an example what I'm talking about. Let's say we want to make it change to the single post view. First, I'm going to go to single post here so we can see the template as it exists now. And then I want to make it change to this template file. I already know that it's the single.php file I need to change.

Modifying existing templates

Just like with the stylesheet, you can add modified template files to your child theme to change or add to the original template in the parent theme. But unlike the stylesheet, you don't just add a file with your changes. When you modify or add to an existing template file in a child theme, you replace the original template file. Let me give you an example what I'm talking about. Let's say we want to make it change to the single post view. First, I'm going to go to single post here so we can see the template as it exists now. And then I want to make it change to this template file. I already know that it's the single.php file I need to change.

But before I can change it, I need to make sure have that file in my child theme. What I'm going to do is go to my themes directory and open the parent theme, so here twentytwelve, and then next to it I'll open my child theme, here is childoftwentytwelve. Now I'm going to find the original file, so right down here, single.php and I'll copy it into my child theme. Now when I access a single post on my site, I'm looking at that post using the single.php template found in my child theme.

How do I know that? Well, I can check it very easily. If I open single.php from my child theme in my text editor, I can make a small change to it to make sure that this is in fact a file that's kicking in. So I'll go in here somewhere and I'll say php echo which means it'll type something out 'This is a single.php template from the child theme.' I'll close out my php delimiter and save this.

If I'm using this template which is single.php template found inside childoftwentytwelve, you'll see this piece of text appear when we open a single post. So I'll reload my single post and now you see that text appeared here. This is the single.php template from the child theme, which means we are now using the template from the child theme. That means that just like with my stylesheet, if I make at change and then I don't like that change or make a mistake when I'm editing a template file in my child theme, all I have to do is simply go in and delete the file from my child theme, reload the page, and I now have a template from the parent theme again.

So here you see again this idea of nondestructive editing. You make a change to a file, but you are actually making a change to the copy of the file. So if you make a change and it doesn't work, you can always fall back on the original.

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This video is part of

Image for WordPress 3: Building Child Themes
WordPress 3: Building Child Themes

45 video lessons · 33412 viewers

Morten Rand-Hendriksen
Author

 
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  1. 6m 59s
    1. Welcome
      1m 6s
    2. Using the exercise files
      1m 34s
    3. What you need to know before watching this course
      1m 29s
    4. Getting the right tools for theme creation
      2m 50s
  2. 17m 2s
    1. What is a WordPress child theme and when should you use it?
      2m 38s
    2. Picking a parent theme
      3m 55s
    3. Making sure you have the Twenty Twelve parent theme
      1m 50s
    4. Creating and activating a basic child theme
      4m 20s
    5. Importing parent theme styles
      4m 19s
  3. 16m 2s
    1. Using the developer tools
      3m 53s
    2. Modifying existing styles
      4m 24s
    3. Adding space between paragraphs
      4m 7s
    4. Changing font family styles
      3m 38s
  4. 31m 47s
    1. Understanding the WordPress template hierarchy
      3m 12s
    2. Modifying existing templates
      2m 33s
    3. Moving the header image
      4m 29s
    4. Adding Related Posts feature to posts
      6m 26s
    5. Creating custom page templates
      5m 43s
    6. Using conditional statements for customized effects
      5m 41s
    7. Creating custom header, footer, and sidebar templates
      3m 43s
  5. 17m 5s
    1. Understanding the different index pages and what they do
      4m 6s
    2. Adding author, date, and time information to the index loop
      7m 15s
    3. Changing the appearance of category index pages
      5m 44s
  6. 43m 5s
    1. Introducing functions.php
      3m 24s
    2. Overriding existing functions
      3m 23s
    3. Adding pagination to index pages
      5m 49s
    4. Adding to existing functions
      3m 21s
    5. Adding a new footer menu to Twenty Twelve
      6m 24s
    6. Adding a new widgetized area to pages
      4m 9s
    7. Adding static content to the sidebar
      7m 44s
    8. Replacing existing functions
      2m 36s
    9. Adding a Google font through a function
      6m 15s
  7. 10m 24s
    1. Adding new featured image sizes
      5m 41s
    2. Adding featured images to posts and pages
      4m 43s
  8. 31m 1s
    1. Adding a welcome message to the front page
      1m 22s
    2. Displaying page content in an index page
      7m 42s
    3. Hooking in a featured image
      4m 34s
    4. Making the welcome message responsive
      6m 27s
    5. Restricting content to the first page of the blog
      4m 22s
    6. Adding a jQuery function to show or hide the welcome message
      6m 34s
  9. 10m 23s
    1. Adding a custom favicon
      3m 58s
    2. Adding a custom screenshot
      2m 29s
    3. Adding footer information
      3m 56s
  10. 7m 14s
    1. What to do when a child theme crashes your website
      4m 38s
    2. Updating parent and child themes
      2m 36s

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