Using Onenote In The Classroom

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Teachers are on the frontlines of enabling the sudden shift to remote learning. Within a matter of weeks, educators have had to quickly adapt their engaging, aligned, in-person lessons into online learning for their students. This incredible change has shed light on the inspiring ingenuity, passion, and commitment of those who support our communities.

Learn the basics of Microsoft OneNote, and then dive into specific scenarios for teachers, students, and school administrators with these interactive guides. OneNote for Education With Microsoft OneNote, educators can create notebooks that help them stay organized, deliver curriculum, and collaborate with students and colleagues. Organize your lesson plans and course content in your own digital notebook. Keep everything in a OneNote Class Notebook, and use its powerful search to find what you're looking for, even text in pictures or handwriting. Your notebooks are saved automatically and can be viewed from any devices, online or offline. Free interactive online training.

What we hear from educators is that they need to be able to transition to remote learning quickly, to connect in a community to share best practices, and to learn from each other.

Based on feedback from our Remote Learning Educator Community, we’ve outlined five ways to help you get the most out of Microsoft Teams, a digital hub for communication and collaboration, during remote learning:

  1. Connection and collaboration: Use the Teams built-in meetings features to effectively hold classroom meetings, collaborate on virtual whiteboards, and share documents. With assignments, conversations, files, notes, and video calls all pulled together, Teams is a great all-in-one hub for the collaborative classroom. Here is a great Teams for Education Quick Start Guide, and we have new updates rolling out regularly with improvements that have been inspired by educators.

  2. Inclusion: In order to ensure learners of all abilities are included, understanding which tools and technologies improve accessibility and foster an inclusive classroom becomes critical. With built-in capabilities like the Immersive Reader, message translation, and Live Captions for meetings, Teams is a non-stigmatizing platform.

  3. Meaningful feedback with rubrics: An important part of remote learning is good teaching practice. Teams Assignments have built-in rubrics. Rubric grading helps increase assignment transparency for students and allows you to give more meaningful feedback. These feedback mechanisms not only help students learn and improve their work, but they’re also a consistent and transparent way for teachers to grade. This has been an incredibly popular feature with both educators and students, and with rubrics now easily sharable, we have seen this practice take off in Teams.

  4. Staff and learning communities: Saving time, being more organized, and collaborating more effectively during remote learning is critical. With Teams being a hub for education, a core part of this also includes built-in Staff teams and Professional Learning Community (PLC) teams to go along with Class Teams. This provides a one-stop shop for educators. Staff Teams and PLC teams allow educators and staff to easily communicate and collaborate during remote learning. We’ve seen many three-ring binders tossed with the paperless use of Staff and PLC teams in schools.

  5. OneNote Class Notebooks, built into Teams: OneNote is a multifaceted note-taking tool that is built into Teams and can be used for a variety of lessons and activities. With OneNote Class Notebooks, you have a personal workspace for every student, a content library for handouts, and a collaboration space for lessons and creative activities. You can also embed all sorts of interactive apps, lessons, and content onto the OneNote page. Especially with remote learning, paper notes and handouts are difficult to work with, and having a digital notebook for the class is a natural fit.

Remote learning is a journey for all of us, and we are grateful to the diligence and creativity of educators during this time. Please visit our Remote Learning Page (higher education here) and (K-12 here) for all of our resources. Thank you for all you have done for students around the world. We are looking forward to continuing to work with you.

Use OneNote in the classroom to stay organized

Microsoft OneNote has a longstanding reputation in creating impressive and useful tools for the classroom environment. They have developed numerous applications that help both teachers and students organize the educational process.

Among their products, the OneNote Class Notebook and OneNote Staff Notebook stand out as impressive apps that complement each other in their functions.

OneNote Class Notebook
The OneNote Class Notebook has the typical OneNote interface, only with a few additional features. It allows teachers to create one space for the entire class. There, they can post content for students, create space for interaction and collaboration.

Onenote Classroom Notebook


The app has three further subsections.

  • Student Notebooks are private sections allocated for learners individually. They are shared with the teacher. While professors view each student's works, the peers don't have access to those;
  • Content Library where teachers can upload course materials and reference works. The easy and timesaving way to do this is to turn to for sample essays. This is another area that could be enabled as read-only to students.
  • Collaboration Space allows all parties to work together, organize, and share materials.

While the interfaces of OneNote and OneNote Class look similar, there are some highlights that are significantly different.

  • Option to add multiple users to upload content that is only viewable by the teacher;
  • Tools to add or remove students;
  • The requirement of Office 365 subscription for Education.

Ideas For Using Onenote In The Classroom

OneNote Class makes it incredibly easy for educators to organize their class materials. It allows the admin to send out handouts, distribute homework, review assignments, submissions, and share important notes. All in one place - finally.

The advantages are many for the teachers. As admins, they have the possibility to make any space teachers-only. They can also lockdown the collaboration spaces to prevent students from editing.

This allows sharing guided notes based on student levels. Teachers can also view the history of activity, keeping a tab on the reviews they have made.

OneNote further includes digital inking. This allows users to add handwritten notes or sketches. Teachers can also send out guest links to invite parents to take a look at the students' class works. Overall, OneNote Class has the capability to make each class work a lot easier.

OneNote Staff Notebook
The OneNote Staff Notebook, as the name suggests, is an application that is oriented exclusively on the staff members.

This has several features similar to the Class Notebook, which makes it easier for teachers to work with and make the best of both.

The Staff Notebook for Education comes with three subsections as well:

  • Collaboration Space is for the admin and the other staff members to share and collaborate. Here, every member can add on edit notes. Schools are using this space for cross-grade lesson plan development and arrange other activities;
  • Content Library is for the admin to add, edit or share course materials with the staff. This part of the app has a read-only option for the other staff members. As this space is read-only, it is apt to include important information such as school policies or programs. You can also add to-do lists, sticky notes, deadlines, and calendars here;
  • Staff Member Notebooks are individual spaces distributed between the admin and the teachers. The admin can access these at any time, and the individual sections are not visible to other members.

The admin can also use this section to encourage staff to upload the classroom observations, using images or audio. Staff members can further upload lesson plans and receive feedback.

In the absence of a particular educator, one's lesson plans can be printed out for a substitute teacher.

OneNote Staff Notebook is the best tool available to interact with colleagues and give personal and professional feedback. Admins can also attach emails to the collaboration spaces or forward those to other concerned staff members separately.

Similar to the Class Notebook, members can also jot notes down with the digital ink option. You can also create different staff groups with leaders and form collaborative space access to the staff leaders only.

How to Download the Notebook
OneNote works on all devices and platforms and is available as an app. You can go to the web browser or the app store to download the version suited to your OS.

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Users can create a Notebook, add members, and manage notebooks right from the interface.

Using Onenote In College

When you choose the option, you will be presented with a brief introduction to the particular feature. You will be guided through every step, with clear instructions and the options available.

Using Onenote In The Classroom Youtube

The initial setup steps are as follows:

  • Open the OneNote app;
  • Create a Class/ Staff Notebook. Here you have an option to add a co-owner;
  • Invite or add teachers/ students;
  • Check or remove the default sections in each category. You can also add or edit the title of the different sections;
  • Finalize the process.

Microsoft Onenote Classroom

Using Onenote In The Classroom

Wrapping Up
Both notebooks serve as a single solution to organizing and collaboration of all parties of the educational process. Such a blended digital platform allows seamless coordination and can change the way you teach once and for all.