Type and layout for two-version textbook?

clace's picture

I'm writing a textbook for middle school students studying English as a foreign language. It's a speaking workbook, and for such a book to be useful, it needs a substantial teacher's edition. But I have so many questions about how to implement this!

1. I have 6 types of information that need to be added to form the teacher's edition. These include short answers, paragraphs, and tables. On most pages there's enough extra text that if I assigned all the teacher components a common design feature, like italics or boxes or a different type, it would look very strange. Any ideas?

2. With different text the teacher's edition doesn't quite match with the student edition; however I can make each lesson (2-4 pages) be the same amount in each version. Is that good enough?

3. a question about the answer space itself. I used dotted lines for short answers, and big blank space for notes. That makes the most sense instructionally, but looks awful. What can I do?

4. how is the type and general layout? I'm using Palatino in LaTeX with the memoir class, on a4 paper. I think it looks very raggedy on the left. I'm thinking I should increase the margins and make subsection headings more distinctive..?

5. Artwork is not planned, but I want to liven it up a bit for the kids. Ideas? And, I have the option to make all the numbered questions continuous throughout a lesson. Should I?

Thank you very much! I've never designed anything on this scale before, nor have I used LaTeX, so this is a big challenge. PS, the sample (textbook.pdf) should be viewed in 2-page mode, because the versions are side by side, and the first page is filler. I also included toefl.pdf, which is a draft (with much less text) in the style of tufte's books. I rejected this because the margins had limited utility, but am rethinking this.

textbook.pdf214.95 KB
toefl.pdf196.23 KB
JamesM's picture

Clace, is this textbook just for your own students, or is it something you plan to sell commercially? If it's a commercial product you really need to work with a professional graphic designer.

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