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Working with exercise sets

From: iBooks Author for Teachers: Creating a Math Lesson

Video: Working with exercise sets

We're well into the process of creating our math lesson and it's time to finish formatting the text that will sit on the page. So in this movie, we're going to format examples and exercise sets in three and four column groups and we'll use a shortcut to help us deal with the pesky problem of aligning our equations. So, let's pick up where we left off. Down here at the bottom of page 2, we'll work on the Try-It-Out now. What I would like to do is bring back the examples so they sit at the bottom of the page here. So I'll click on the bottom of the text box and drag it down a bit until I can see the examples.

Working with exercise sets

We're well into the process of creating our math lesson and it's time to finish formatting the text that will sit on the page. So in this movie, we're going to format examples and exercise sets in three and four column groups and we'll use a shortcut to help us deal with the pesky problem of aligning our equations. So, let's pick up where we left off. Down here at the bottom of page 2, we'll work on the Try-It-Out now. What I would like to do is bring back the examples so they sit at the bottom of the page here. So I'll click on the bottom of the text box and drag it down a bit until I can see the examples.

Now, I want to create a nice evenly spaced three column layout here. If I look in the inspector, I can see that this text box is 474 points wide. I want to divide it into three equal columns so, I'll do a little math and figure out that each column should be 158 points wide, and that's where I'll set my tabs. So with my cursor in this paragraph, I'll go to the Text Inspector and click on Tabs. Then I'll go to Tab Stops and click on the plus sign (+) twice to add two tab stops.

Double-click on the first one, and that's going to be at 158 points and the second one will be at 316. There, now I have three nicely spaced columns. Now, I need to format these letters. I want them bold just like I had the bold numbers on the first page. So, I'll select the whole paragraph, apply bold, and then I'll create a new paragraph style. I'll call the new style 3 Column Examples and click OK.

Now, I still need to deal with that vertical alignment problem with the MathType equations. So, let's zoom in and scroll down. They're sitting just above the baseline with the a, b, and c. Over my character styles, remember we created a character style that deal with this problem called Math. But it's a bit of a pain to have to go here and select it each and every time if we have a whole bunch of examples. So what I'm going to do is edit the Math character style and apply a hot Key.

I'll just choose F1. So now, every time I tap F1 on my keyboard when I have text selected, the Math character style will be applied to that text. And in this case, it will baseline shift it to align it with the rest of my text. Let's try it. I'll select the equation plus that little extra space because remember, I can't apply a character style to just a math equation. And then I'll press F1 on my keyboard. You may also have to hold down the function key on your keyboard to get iBooks Author to apply the style. Let's repeat.

I'll select the equation, press F1 and zoom out. Our third example doesn't look as good as the other two, because notice this y has a descender and that's causing it to sit even farther out of alignment. So what we need to do is create yet another character style. I'll select the text, go to the More tab in the Text Inspector and nudge it down another two points. I'll zoom in and take a good look at it. I want to be sure it's in alignment before I go ahead and create a style for it. That looks good.

Let's create another style, Create New Character Style from Selection. We'll call this Math Descender. I'll look at the character attributes, deselect them all, and just select Baseline Shift, and click OK. So now I have a character style to straighten out my regular math and my math with descenders. I'll zoom back out. And at the top of the next page, I have my answers to those questions. I'd like to put those in another one of those pop-up checkmarks just like I did on the first page.

So I'll cut those, move back to this page ,and I'll just paste right now with nothing selected to put them in their own text box. Then I'll hold down the Option key on my keyboard and click and drag the pop-over from the first page. By holding Option before I click and drag, I get an extra copy of the pop-over. Now, I can cut and paste this answer text into this copy of the pop-over. I'll cut it, select the text box I don't need anymore, and delete it. Double-click on the pop-over and paste in my new answers.

Let's format them in the same way we had our other answers, so they'll each be on their own paragraph. I'll select them, apply the Answers style. And now, I don't want 1, 2, 3 here, I want a, b, and c. So I need to go to my List, under Bullets & Numbering and change it to a, b, and c. Then I can apply my Plain Text character style, resize the box a bit, and then move the answer check into position.

I'll also borrow the direction line from the first one. Copy it, and scroll over, and paste it. Now there is a little bit tighter space here because again, I have a different layout here. This is the sidebar layout and the main text column is narrower. So I might turn off the text wrap altogether and resize the direction line a little bit just to make it fit.

Now, let's move on to the next page. I'll delete that extra return we don't need. We'll select the titles of Example 2 and Example 3 by holding down the Command key on our keyboard and dragging. Apply the Emphasis character style, and then we'll fix our fraction spacing again, by selecting this first example, and remember we have our Math hot key, so we can just press F1 on the keyboard to fix that. We'll do the same for the next example.

And then there should be a tab not a space in between the direction here and the fraction. So I'll press tab. Do the same for before Simplify, apply my Fraction character style, and let's apply a hot key while we're at it; we'll make this F2, so now we can deal with fractions just by tapping F2 on our keyboard. We'll apply our Example Step character style and move our sidebar down so it's aligned with the text where it needs to be.

Apply our Fraction character style, F2, and I might also remove the space after in this paragraph, so it's not pushing down the rest of the examples so far. I'll go to the Text Inspector, Text, and drag After Paragraph all the way down to 0. Again, I'll open up the text box so we can fit to try it out. This is going to be our 3 Column paragraph style. Select the first fraction, F2, and same for the other fractions, and scroll over.

We've got some more Answers, we'll cut those and repeat the process with the checkmark. Okay, now let's look at the Exercises section. I've Heading 1 for Exercises, that's good; Heading 2 for Practice & Problem Solving, Body text for the instruction line. Now I'll select my 3 Column Examples, apply the style and repeat the process of applying the character style to fix the vertical alignment using my hot keys.

I'll add a new hot key for the descender character style, F3. This direction line is okay as body and now we need to create a 4 Column paragraph style for these examples. Again, it starts with doing a little bit of math taking the width of the text box and dividing it by 4 to figure out where your tab stop should go. I'll go over to the Tabs in the Text Inspector, add my first one which will be at 118, the next at 236, and the next at 354.

Again, I'll select all the text, apply bold so I can have bold numbers and create a new paragraph style. I'll call this, 4 Column Examples and apply it to the text I have selected. Some more work with my hot keys to align these fractions. And in fact, why don't I select them all at once by holding down the Command key and then, I can apply them just once, it makes it a little less tedious.

I'll delete the sidebar because I don't need it. And that's it for formatting the text in this lesson. We still have some work to do. We're going to add these questions into an interactive review widget and we're also going to add another piece of interactivity in the form of a calculator here in the sidebar, and that's the topic of the next movie.

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iBooks Author for Teachers: Creating a Math Lesson

12 video lessons · 2712 viewers

Mike Rankin
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