Did you pick up a sheet of paper that seems like it needs to be folded and you aren’t sure how or why? Let’s talk about it! (Did you not get one of my puzzle flyers? You can print this off as a double-sided single sheet and get started folding!)

It can be valuable to ask students to make their own quartos—there’s nothing else to drive home the ways in which signature marks and catchwords work. It can be a simple exercise or a complicated one, depending on what you want to do with it; here’s how I’ve done it when I’m teaching.

Sometimes I like to make my syllabus and promotional materials as quartos. It can be an easy way to drive home the point that visual cues show us how to interact with textual materials. And it’s a quick introduction to the concept that books were printed as sheets, not leaves, of paper. I’ve been turning my syllabus into a quarto since 2012 and it’s always worked like a charm. If it’s possible for you to pull it off, it might be worth a try.

If you want to make your own quarto handouts, here are a couple of templates to do a straightforward quarto imposition: one for InDesign (template and file) and one for Word (template and file). These are not the extra-complicated back-to-back one I’ve been using as promotional material, but you never know how much you’ll want to put the boundaries once you start playing!