Sherborne Girls School

In June 2019 I was delighted to spend two days with a group of teachers representing a range of subject areas at Sherborne Girls School in Dorset, training them to be OneNote Ninjas. You can see from the photo that they were happy to receive their OneNote capes!

Ahead of this, we had Skyped to agree what would be the best use of our time so we had a clear shared understanding of what we would be trying to achieve. Over 12 hours we covered all aspects of OneNote as a teaching and learning tool, with a firm focus on demonstrably effective and efficient uses of the platform to enhance real-life lesson planning, delivery and feedback. I was able to show dozens of examples from my current school and the generous time allocation meant there was ample (and appreciated) time for the teachers to start getting their hands dirty as well as for them to individually discuss with me the particulars need and demands of their own subject area.

Over the two days we covered:

  • The different versions of OneNote
  • Departmental planning using OneNote
  • Pros and cons of different ways of setting up notebooks
  • Using the Teacher-only section
  • Using the Manage notebooks feature
  • Settings
  • Sections and Pages
  • All the File attachment/printing and insert options
  • Creating, setting, distributing pages and assignments
  • Creating a feedback loop with student work using text, inking, stickers and voice
  • Giving combined voice and inked feedback
  • Many tips and tricks on using Tables, Pictures, Shapes
  • Exploiting Immersive Reader for English and other languages
  • Creating Escape Room activities
  • Looking at resources that embed in OneNote ie Flipgrid, Wakelet, Wizer etc
  • Keyboard shortcuts for OneNote
  • Sketchnoting-the power of dual coding

Below is some feedback I received after the CPD was completed:

The training was relevant and provided lots of hints and tips to improve my everyday use of OneNote. Lots of suggestions for how OneNote could be used which we had plenty of time to explore and play around with.

Interactive and experimental nature of the training with time allowed for ‘play.’

I liked the way that Steve adapted the content and his teaching style – pace was good. 

Time to explore OneNote and work towards securing skills 

Lots of shortcuts and great to see examples of real life notebooks.

Time to try things out. Small group. 

I don’t think it could have been improved as it was perfectly paced for me.

Dear Steve, 

Thanks again for your brilliantly informative course last week. As someone who uses OneNote everyday with my classes it was great to pick up little tricks to make life faster!! The example notebooks will serve to be very useful with the department too. 

Jessie, Science teacher

Dear Steve

I can’t thank you enough for your fantastic commitment to enthusing our staff in the pursuit of continued development of teaching and learning opportunities. R………. came to see me first thing on Saturday to share his utter enthusiasm, appreciation and support of this digital strategy and your engagement with the group to develop their skills. He just feels sad that he has to wait 9 weeks to get started with his new classes!  Thank you for sharing your feedback from the staff and for your thoughts on helping us to plan our next steps.

Louise Orton, Deputy Head


The school has now appointed a Head and Deputy Head of Digital Learning, OneNote is being used by all departments, the school has issued Surface devices to all staff and has gone pen-enabled with the students. Great to hear!

Thank you again for everything you have done to get us where we are today.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s