Improve your Students’ Math Experience with LaTeX Lesson Notes

Teaching students mathematical concepts effectively can be tricky when equations aren’t formatted neatly. These difficult-to-read equations can cause unnecessary confusion and frustration for both tutors and their students.

Teachworks offers tutor management software that includes plenty of useful features for math tutors, like the LaTeX Lesson Notes Add-on in all of our plans. When you complete lessons in Teachworks, you’re able to add detailed notes about the lesson. This feature allows LaTeX scripts to be displayed as correctly formatted equations within lesson notes and ensures that students can learn without any hiccups or misunderstandings.

What is LaTeX?

If you aren’t familiar with LaTeX, it’s a script used to typeset mathematical equations into documents. Essentially this means that it conveniently translates plain character text instructions into correctly formatted mathematical equations that are easy to read. 

Benefits of using Teachworks’ LaTeX Lesson Notes Add-on 

When tutoring mathematics, LaTeX can be a very useful tool to help students grasp the concepts correctly. Below are two of the main benefits of the LaTeX Lesson Notes Add-on.

Ensures the correct formatting of math equations 

When compiling Lesson Notes, you can add in the LaTeX script to ensure equations are formatted properly. Before completing the lesson, you can even preview your script to make sure that equations are shown correctly by pressing “LaTeX to Math” located underneath the field box. 

Having equations displayed correctly helps students refine their math skills quicker, with less confusion related to the concepts.  

Allows students to access their homework within Teachworks 

If you’ve enabled user accounts for your students, they’ll be able to log in, access, and readily view their mathematics homework with ease. They can access their notes in the following ways: 

  • Profile: students can select “Profile” and choose the lesson under “Recent Lessons”.
  • Lesson History: students can select “Calendar” then “Lesson History” and select a lesson.

Enabling the LaTeX Lesson Notes Add-on 

Getting started with the LaTeX Add-on in Teachworks is easy! To enable the feature, select Account & Settings > Integrations & Add-ons. On the Integration & Add-ons page, scroll down to the “LaTeX Lesson Notes” feature and select “Enable”. Once that step is done, there’s no other configuration needed to start formatting equations! 

Using the LaTeX Lesson Notes Add-on 

When the feature is enabled, you can start using it within a lesson’s internal or shared notes fields. To access these note fields, you can select “Complete” on the lesson pop-up within the calendar. 

Using the characters found on your keyboard, you’re able to construct an equation in plain text that once converted, displays it perfectly formatted and easy to read. For symbol options, check out this math equation cheat sheet

There are a couple of options for displaying your equation within the lesson notes. The first method is to display it within its own block, using the dollar sign characters to wrap the equation like this: “$$your equation$$”. This means it will show on a completely different line than the other text you have within the note. 

The other option is formatting it to display on the same line as the other text by surrounding the equation with backslashes & brackets shown like this: “\(your equation\)”. For example, the Pythagorean theorem would be displayed in the following ways within Teachworks:  

showing the Pythagorean theorem displayed both inline and within its own block

Viewing Lesson Notes

Once notes have been added, there are multiple ways to review them including through the Lesson Summaries Report, Lesson History by Student, through the Main Calendar, and in student’s profiles. Take a look here to learn more about viewing lesson notes! 

Conclusion

The LaTeX Lesson Note Add-on included in Teachworks can help tutors ensure they’re displaying correctly formatted math equations, and allow students to access them with their own user account.

Students learn and grasp mathematical concepts more effectively with fewer misunderstandings or formatting errors to hold them back. To try this feature for yourself, sign up for a free trial or read about it in our Knowledge Base.  

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