OneNote is a digital notebook that automatically saves and syncs your notes as you work. You can organize your content into different notebooks that you can then divide into sections and pages. OneNote allows you to revise your notes with type, highlighting, or ink annotations. With easy navigation and search, you can always find your notes right where you left them, saved and up to date. It’s great for collaborating with team members because you can simultaneously work on the same document, with real-time editing.
Updated Features in 2021
While OneNote has always been an incredible tool for note taking and collaboration, it’s even better now! One of our favorite new features is the Draw tab.
Draw or sketch in OneNote to bring your notes to life. If using an iPad or tablet, the Draw feature is fully functional with an iPencil or other stylus, and it is as responsive as writing on a piece of paper! We love this feature, and it is especially great for those with a creative bent. There are tons of drawing tools, including a pen, marker, and highlighter, and tons of customizable color and size options. If you prefer writing over typing but still want to get all of the incredible benefits of the OneNote digital notebook, this feature is for you. Microsoft created this helpful tutorial for drawing or sketching.
Draw or Write in your Notebook:
- Select Draw and select a Pen, Pencil, or Highlighter to use.
- Once you’ve selected what you want, select the downward-facing arrow.
- Select the pen’s thickness.
- Select a color, or select More Colors to find a custom hue.
Create Shapes in OneNote
With OneNote, you can insert shapes into your pages or draw shapes with your finger, iPencil/stylus, or mouse. OneNote will automatically clean them up for you, creating perfect shapes.
Insert a Shape:
- Select Draw > Shapes.
- Choose a basic shape, like an Oval, click anywhere in your notebook, and then drag to create the shape.
Draw a Shape on a Touch Screen:
- Select Draw > Ink to Shape.
- Draw a shape. Once you finish drawing and remove your writing utensil from the screen, your hand-drawn shapes automatically turn into perfect shapes with clean lines and corners.
- When you’re done drawing, tap Select Objects or Type Text.
OneNote for Education
If you are in education, OneNote has specifically created tools for you. Whether you are a teacher, a school leader, or a student, OneNote has tailored its features and environment to meet your needs. As a teacher or administrator, OneNote will help you organize lesson plans, keep track of assignments and tasks, and collaborate with your department. There is an entire OneNote Toolkit for teachers! A personal and collaborative workspace for every student, a full library of handouts, and Learning Tools for diverse learners are just a few resources at the fingertips of students.
There are several education-specific features that are new in Windows 10 that allow teachers and students to both teach and learn better.
Plus, students and educators are eligible for Office 365 Education for free, including OneNote, Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and now Microsoft Teams. Learn more about how you can use OneNote in your education environment to foster effective learning and teaching.
Want to Learn More About the Basics of OneNote?
For some really helpful video training, check out Microsoft’s fast and free video tutorials and discover more OneNote features.
Quick Start Guide
- Access Your Notes Anywhere:
With the OneNote App, all you have to do is log in to your Microsoft account to access all of your documents. This makes it extremely easy to stay connected wherever you go.
- Never Run Out Of Paper:
Add as many pages and documents as your heart desires. To add a new page in a current section, select the (+) Add Page button at the top of the page tabs column. You can also right click any page tab and then select New Page or press Ctrl+N on your keyboard.
- Don’t Worry About Saving:
OneNote automatically saves all of your changes as you work so you can rest easy and know your documents are safe. To see when OneNote last synced your changes, select File > Info > View Sync Status.
- Tag Important Notes:
The Tags gallery on the Home tab allows you to visually prioritize or categorize selected notes. Tagged notes are marked with icons that prompt you to follow up on your important action items or to check off completed tasks on your to-do lists.
- Organize Information In Tables:
Sometimes a spreadsheet is overkill. In these cases, you can use simple OneNote tables to organize information. You can select Insert > Table on the ribbon to draw a table directly into your notes page. Use the Table Tools for additional options, or right click on your table to add columns and rows.
- Create Wiki-Style Hyperlinks:
Turn your notebook into a functional wiki by creating links to specific sections or pages. Right-click the tab of the section or page that the link should point to. Next, select Copy Link to Section or Copy Link to Page, then paste the link wherever you want.
- Copy Text From Pictures:
OneNote can recognize text in pictures. On any page, insert a picture containing legible text, right-click the picture, select Copy Text from Picture, and then paste the copied text where you want it. Note: This may only be applicable on a PC.
- Share Notes With Other People:
Your cloud-based notebooks remain private unless you choose to invite other people to view or edit information in the current notebook. Select File > Share and then choose what you want to do.
- Get Help With OneNote:
Select the ? icon or the OneNote Help option in the Help tab to open the OneNote 2016 Help window, where you can search keywords or phrases for assistance.
- Quick Start Guides:
Download Microsoft’s Quick Start Guides to their other applications for all of the tips and tricks!
If you need help setting up your OneNote or Microsoft Office 365 in general for your church, we’re here to help with that! We exist to change lives by serving those who serve. We’ve spent almost 20 years working specifically with churches and have learned how you can maximize the benefits available to you in Office 365. We would love the opportunity to help you be more efficient with your tools and resources! If you’d like to start a conversation, send us an email at [email protected]. We’d love to chat with you!