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8 things you (probably) didn't know about OneNote

Koen Timmers
by Koen Timmers
Educator - Author - Keynote speaker - Global Teacher Prize 2017 finalist

No need to say OneNote is a great tool. OneNote goes further than taking one note. It allows you to save documents in the cloud, share and collaborate with peers, to present, to create multimedial documents and much much more.This is how I use OneNote in my classroom. In this article I'll show some features you probable never heard of.  For those who want to get started with OneNote, read this quick guide.

Use OneNote to save a tree (or a forest)

1. Convert handwriting to text

I absolutely love the ability to write, sketch and draw in OneNote. But did you know OneNote allows to convert your handwriting to text?

  1. Write
  2. Select
  3. Hit the button Ink to Text 

OneNote convert handwriting to text

2. Add new features to OneNote

OneTastic adds lots of great feature to OneNote: cropping images, selecting text from images, customs styles, adding favorites, etc. It allows you to automate tasks via macro's. Via OneCalendar you're able to create calendars

3. Insert images from your smartphone directly in your OneNote document (and convert to text)

This feature is just crazy. Office Lens is an app which you can install on your smartphone. It allows you to take a picture, put this image directly in your OneNote document. Some kind of sci fi scan function.

4. OneNote calculates 

When you insert an equation and end with an equal sign, after pressing the space bar you will automatically get the result. 


5. Wiki style: inserting links

You're able to add internal link to text via wiki-tags. Let's say you want to link the page "calendar". You can link via [[calendar]]. The square brackets will disappear and the link will turn blue and become clickable. 
Special thanks to my pal Kurt Söser who taught me this trick.


6. Taking notes while recording audio

You can record audio and take notes in OneNote. But what if you combine both features? Exactly! OneNote will show synchronically the notes with the audio while playing. Next to notes and drawings audio icons will appear. 


7. The search form searches handwriting and images

This will blow your mind. Search form isn't only searching typed texts, it also searches your handwriting and images like screenshots. 


8. Take notes without having OneNote open

The Send-to-OneNote tool comes with OneNote. It allows you to create fast screenshots or take notes which will then be automatically saved to OneNote. 

Thank you Marjolein for your input! 


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