All Tasks

Polypad User Guide


This tutorial provides an overview of the tools and functionality of Polypad. Below are the topics covered.

  • Adding Tiles to the Canvas
  • Copying Tiles
  • Changing Colors
  • Keyboard Shortcuts
  • Inserting Text and Equations
  • Evaluating Equations
  • Using the Pen Tool
  • Changing the Settings
  • Using High Contrast Mode
  • Using Dark Mode
  • Saving a Polypad
  • Sharing a Polypad
  • Layering of Tiles
  • Locking Tiles
  • Making Tiles Invisible
  • Sound Effects

Adding Tiles to the Canvas

To add tiles to the canvas, drag it onto the canvas or click on the tile. Selecting a tile in the canvas reveals options at the bottom based on the tile type.

Copying Tiles

Copying tiles is very useful in Polypad. Copy tiles by selecting the copy option at the bottom of the canvas, clicking "c" on the keyboard, or holding down the "ALT" to create a copy by dragging.

Changing Colors

Use the color picker at the bottom of the canvas to change colors. Click on the slider to change the RGB values or to enter an RGB value. Use the bottom slider to change the transparency of the tile.

Keyboard Shortcuts

There are a number of keyboard shortcuts in Polypad.

You can find a link to this list at the bottom of the left sidebar. Click on Accessibility.

Text Box and Equation Editor

Easily change the size and color of text and equations.

Evaluating Expressions

Polypad will evaluate expressions creating using the Equation Editor. Turn this option on and off in the settings menu. The expressions work appropriately on the balance scale.

Pen Tool

Use the pen tool for to write on the canvas and use the ruler tool to draw straight lines.

Settings Bar

The settings bar on the right of the canvas has all sorts of helpful options - zooming, panning, different backgrounds, turning on and off number numbers, alternative colors, a "hand-drawn" mode, and more.

High Contrast Mode

High Contrast Mode is found in the settings toolbar and is helpful when projecting a Polypad on a large screen.

Dark Mode

Select Dark Mode in your account settings menu.

Saving a Polypad

Easily save Polypads and create folders to organize Polypads. Double-click on a saved Polypad to quickly load the canvas.

Sharing a Polypad

There are 3 options for allowing access to a saved Polypad:

  • Sharing on and Access set to "Public": Anyone can access the Polypad with the link. No account is needed to view the Polypad.
  • Sharing on, Access set to "My Students" (in a teacher account) or "My Teacher" (in a student account): Only students or teachers connected to a Mathigon class can access the Polypad.
  • Sharing off: Only the owner of the Polypad has access.

Layering of Tiles

Select "Advanced Options" from the settings menu to reveal layering options. Now, when selecting tiles, additional options appear in the toolbar. Text, Equations, and Question Builder boxes are automatically set to Keep on Top.

Lock Position and Lock Tiles

Select Lock Position to fix the tile in one place while allowing users to make copies and change the color of the locked tile. This feature is useful tiles need to serve as a template or pile of unlimited tiles. Unlock the position in the same manner as locking the position.

Select Lock Tile to prevent users from making any changes to the given tile. A locked tile functions as a fixed image on the canvas. Users cannot copy, move, rotate or do anything else with the tile. Unlock all tiles in the settings menu.

Advanced Options must be turned on in the settings menu for these options to appear.

Try it out for yourself.

Invisible Tiles

Invisible tiles remain on the canvas and can be used to align other tiles. Reveal invisible tiles in the settings menu.

Sound Effects

Sounds effects are options for most probability tools as well as merging Number Cards. Sounds effects can be turned on and off in the settings menu.

Learning about Tiles

Visit the Tutorial Page for learning about using all the different tiles.