Category Archives: Word Tutorials

Reading Log Template

Download our free reading log template.

Reading Log Template

Click to enlarge this preview of what the reading log looks like

Keeping a reading log for your child allows you to track and assess their progress. You can look back over the weeks and find out just how many hours of reading was really done.

The important pieces of information in any reading log are:

  • the student’s name
  • date – you need at least one date to orientate yourself. Otherwise, you might look at a child’s log and wonder whether it was for last week, last year, or even¬† five years ago!
  • the book title
  • how many pages (or even the page range that was read, if you want to record more detail)
  • how long the student read for. How many pages and for how long they read are simply measures of “how much” they did. You might think that the actual time spent reading is more pertinent than the number of pages read, but you can never have enough information. Why not record both?

You can add optional pieces of information to your reading log, too, such as:

  • student’s initials (to promote the idea that this is a collaborative process)
  • teacher’s/parent’s initials

Many people find that it’s better to leave out the individual dates of days and just have a place at the top of the document where you can type in or write the start date of the week. Doing it this way just means that you have less work to do when you want to print off your next reading log. It’s a hassle updating the document to amend the date for each individual day. It’s much easier to leave out dates in the document, print off a batch and then write in the week commencing date, as appropriate.

We’re keeping it minimal with this reading log, but feel free to download it and amend it to your heart’s desire. We’ve made the log a straight black and white affair to save on your ink. Coloured tables do look nice, but of course they have a cost that soon adds up if you’re printing off 30 logs each time. If you’re using Word 2010 you can get a good selection of table styles with which to spice up your prints.

For the student’s name and week commencing, you can either type in these details into the Word document itself and then print it off, or you can print it off and then scribble in the details in your best handwriting. Personally, I prefer to print off a batch of them and then write in the details myself, when I need one.

Don’t forget, this is a reading log template – it’s designed to be redesigned! It’s merely a starting point, though many people will find that it already gives them space to record all the details they want.

Create A Bibliography In Word 2010

If you make reference to other sources of information when writing your document, then you need to cite those sources in a bibliography. As the task of creating a bibliography is a common one, Word 2010 comes with tools that make the process easier.

The bibliography is usually placed at the end of a document and lists the sources that you consulted or cited within the document. In Word 2010 you can automatically generate a bibliography based on the source information that you provide for the document, either as you go along, or when the document is finished.

Insert A Citation In Word

When you add a new citation to your document, you also need to add its source so that it will appear in the bibliography. Many authors prefer to add sources as they appear in their documents. Each time they make a citation, they also add its source. You can do this by going to the References tab > Citations & Bibliography group, and change the bibliography style to be the one you need. For this examle we’ll use MLA Seventh Edition. The citation style you choose affects the information about the source you need to supply and also its presentation in your document.

Bibliography Style

Once you’ve chosen a style, place the cursor at the end of the sentence or phrase that you want to cite. In the same group in the ribbon, click Insert Citation. At this point, you can either provide all the source information now (select Add New Source), or you can insert a placeholder and fill in that information later (select Add New Placeholder). We’ll choose Add New Source to supply the source information now.

Type in information about the source in the Create Source window that opens.

Create Source

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In this example, we’re citing a book, but you’ll find that you have to enter different information depending on what the Type of Source is. When finished, click OK, and the source citation is complete. Next time you click on Insert Citation, you should see the source you just created.

Insert Citation

Managing Sources

You can view, change and delete sources you’ve previously created by clicking on the Manage Sources button. You’ll see two lists: the Master List contains all sources you’ve created in the past, regardless of what document you were editing, and the Current List contains only the sources you created for the current document. The actions you can perform in this window are fairly self explanaotory: you can create new sources here, and edit and delete existing ones.

If you select source you can see a preview of both how the citation looks, and how the bibliography entry looks.

Create A Bibliography In Word

Once you’ve added your sources, you can generate a bibliography at any point. Note that placeholder citations don’t appear in the bibliography. The bibliography will usually appear at the end of your document, so that’s where we’ll put ours. Place the cursor at the end of the document and click Bibliography.


Choose the bibliography format you’d like to insert.

Hopefully this tutorial has given you a quickstart guide to give you all the information you need to get you up and running with bibliographies in Word, but you can go here for a more in depth exploration of citing sources in Word 2010.

Disable Add-Ins In Word 2010

An add-in is a utility that you can download and install that adds some functionality to Microsoft Word. New commands that the add-in provides will appear in a new tab that appears in a ribbon. However, sometimes, after installing the add-in, you might change your mind and want to remove it. Perhaps the add-in doesn’t provide you with any benefit and just clutters up the ribbon. Or maybe it just doesn’t work!

Look what happens when I start Word 2010 after having downloaded and installed a “minutes” add-in I thought would be useful.

Error mscorlib

It might be that I installed it incorrectly (actually, this was the reason), or maybe the add-in simply doesn’t work. Either way, I don’t have time to investigate the problem; I just want to disable the add-in for now.

Removing A Word 2010 Add-In

To remove a Word 2010 add-in, click the File tab > Options, and then click the Add-Ins section on the left.

Word Options Add Ins

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You’ll see a list of add-ins that are currently installed: at the top are the enabled add-ins and at the bottom are the disabled ones. Find the one you want to remove and select it. We’re not really selecting it for any other reason than to determine its type (far right). The one we want to remove in this example is a COM Add-in, so select COM Add-in from the Manage selector and click Go.

COM Add-Ins

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In the window that opens, you can either uncheck the box next to the add-in to simply disable it, or select it and then click Remove to remove it entirely from Word. If you just disable it, you can re-enable it later, whereas if you remove it you’ll have to re-install it again.

Whichever action you take, the tab that relates to the add-in will be removed from the ribbon.

Snipping Tool For XP

Although Windows XP is now ten years old, many people see it as a reliable operating system and still use it. By default, however, Windows XP does not come with an in-built snipping tool like the Windows 7 Snipping Tool.

If you need a snipping tool for XP, you will need to look at “third party” solutions, and we’ve got two listed here.

The Snippy Snipping Tool For XP

Snippy was made for XP! Once downloaded, the Snippy icon will appear in the taskbar notification area. Clicking on the icon activates Snippy and you can then mark out the region of the screen that you want to copy. Also, if you are cutting out a portion of an Internet Explorer window, the URL will also be copied to the clipboard; this makes it very convenient to select something interesting on a web site and send it out in an email message.

When you initially activate Snippy, the mouse cursor changes to a pen with which you can draw around what you want to snip. If you want to copy a rectangualr area of the screen, you can hold down the shift key while you drag with the mouse.

Gadwin PrintScreen Snipping Tool For XP

The Gadwin PrintScreen Snipping Tool is a step up from Snippy and allows you to set up hot keys to initiate the snip. The Destination tab controls whether the screen prints out instantly, is copied to the clipboard, is saved to a specific folder, or even sent via e-mail. You can perform full screen captures, or capture only a specific window.

You can resize your images and save them to 6 different image formats.

But the best bit about this snipping tool is that it works with Windows XP.

Snipping Tool

Windows 7 comes with a very handy screen capturing tool called the Snipping Tool. You can use the Snipping Tool to capture a screen shot of any object on your screen, and then annotate, save, or share the image.

Screen shots, or snips, are a good way of illustrating what you’re talking about, whether it be in a Word document or an email. Suppose a colleague is having trouble finding the place in Word Options where you turn off the display of the Mini Toolbar. You could navigate there yourself in Word, take a screen shot using the Snipping Tool and then email it to your colleague. You would then attain hero status and never want for friends again.

To run the Snipping Tool, click the Start button and type in “snip”. Click on Snipping Tool when you see it listed. You are now ready to snip!

Run The Snipping Tool

The default snip is a rectangular one – this means that you click and drag a rectangle around what you want to snip. When you release the mouse, what you’ve snipped appears in a new window for you to work with.

Work With Snip

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Annotating The Snip

Sometimes you might find it useful to highlight certain elements in your screen shot. For example, if you want to point out to the aforementioned colleague where to turn of the mini toolbar in Word, a good thing to do is draw a circle around the option. You can draw a freehand circle with the pen tool, and the pen tool is active as soon as you have made the snip. All you have to do is click and drag on the screenshot to start drawing.

Note: You can’t ctrl-z to undo your work! However, you can use the eraser to delete any annotations you make…

Using the standard blue pen, you can get something like this:

Snipping Tool Blue Pen

You can also highlight using the Snipping Tool to get something like this:

Snipping Tool Highlighter

How you annotate is entirely up to you. You can change the tool you use by using the toolbar (you don’t say!):

Snipping Tool Toolbar

There are four kinds of snips that you can take:

  • Free-form Snip – draw a free-form shape around an object on the screen.
  • Rectangular Snip – drag the cursor over an object to form a rectangle.
  • Window Snip – select a whole window, such as a browser window or dialog box, that you want to capture.
  • Full-screen Snip – capture the entire screen.

To choose which form of snip to use, click the down arrow to the right of the New button.


Four Kinds Of Snips

Alternatively, if you use the same kind of snip all the time you can just click the New button and you’ll be ready to use the last form of snip you took.

Saving The Snip

As soon as you have taken your screen shot using the Snipping Tool, it’s in your clipboard. This is handy because it means that you can paste it straight into your Microsoft Word document or your Outlook email. The clipboard is very clever, too. The annotations you add to your screen shot are also added to the clipboard. So you can take a screen shot, add some highlighting and drawings using the Snipping Tool’s tools, and when you ctrl-v to paste the screen shot into a Word document, it will include all your scribblings. Cool.
Alternatively, if you want to save your screen shot as an image in is own right, you can do that too. Press ctrl-s or click File > Save As, and then name the image and find a location on your computer to save it.

Lists In Word – The Basics

Creating a basic list in Word is pretty easy. If you are ready to start typing a list, first of all click either the Bullets button (for a bulleted list) or the Numbering button (for a numbered list), in the Paragraph group on the Home tab.

List Buttons In Word

What you now type will be the first item in the list. To create the next item in the list, simply press the Return key and start typing again. If you are creating a bulleted list, the next item will be bulleted, whereas if you are creating a numbered list, the next item will use the next sequential number.

Lists In Word Demo

You can also easily start another level in your list by pressing the tab key before you start typing the current item. By default, this new level will be indented. If you do this in a numbered list, by default the numbering system will change. For example, if the current level items are numbered 1, 2, 3 etc, then the next level might be numbered a, b, c etc.

Next Level List

Finishing the list takes two presses of the enter key.

If you like doing everything via the keyboard, you don’t need to go anywhere near the ribbon: you can start off a bulleted list by typing a ‘*’ followed by pressing the space bar. The list will then behave as if you’d created it using the Bullets button in the ribbon. Alternatively, if you want a numbered list, you can type a ‘1.’ (don’t forget the period!) and press the space bar. Again, the list numbering will behave as if you’d created it with the Numbering button in the ribbon.

If you’ve already typed in a list of items but haven’t yet made it into a bulleted list or a numbered list, you can add bullets or numbers to the items at any point. All you have to do is select the items and then click one of the Bullets or Numbering buttons in the ribbon.

Inserting an item into an existing list is pretty straightforward, too. Place the cursor at the end of an item in the list and press Return. Hey presto: a new empty item in the list. You can do this to the last entry in the list, too, to add more items.

Inserting An Item In The List

This is basic list handling in Word. But it can get much hairier than that! Stay tuned for a more advanced tutorial on lists in Word.

Word Template Location

Using a Word template is a great way to create a document quickly. To create a new document based on a template, click the File tab > New. A selection of template categories is then displayed. When you select a category, for example Faxes, all templates within that category are displayed. You then need to select the template you want to use and click Download (on the right). Word then opens a new document based on the template you chose. You can change this document in any way you want, save it and/or print it.

As well as using existing templates, you can also create your own. If you create a document in Microsoft Word that you think you might like to use as a base for future documents, it’s a good idea to save it as a template. To do this, click the File tab > Save As and then do the following in the Save As window:

  • name the template – it helps to give the template a meaningful name, such as Meeting Agenda, or Invoice etc
  • change the Save as type to be Word Template (*.dotx)
  • navigate to the location on your hard drive where you want to save your template. But where…? This is an important question, as you’ll soon discover!
Word Template Location

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Where Should You Save Word Templates?

If you save your template in the wrong place, Word won’t be able to find it. When you click the File tab > New, you get to see all the template categories, including My Templates. This is where all the templates you create yourself are stored.

My Templates In Word

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It has a special location on your hard drive, that is not obvious.

This location takes the form:


You should substitute “yourname” with the user id you sign on to your computer with. You can actually copy this location’s path and paste it into the address bar in the Save As window, and press Enter. Now you will find your template in the My templates category.

Word Template Location

If you’re an enterprising individual who likes to find things out for themselves, you can find the Word template location by doing the following:

  • click File > New, and select My Templates at the top
  • in the templates window that opens, right click on any template you see and select Properties
  • the Location is displayed about a third of the way down
  • often, the path is too long to display but if you hover it, you can see the full path in a tooltip

Word Template Path

This is the location where you must save your template.

Remove The Password From A Word Document

How you remove a password from a Word document will depend on how the password was assigned in the first place. The following password window requires you to enter the password to open the document:

Enter Password To Open Document

… and the following window requires you to enter a password in order to modify the document:

Enter Password To Modify Document

Both of these passwords are set – and removed – in the same place. Once you have opened the document, click the File tab > Save as > Tools > General Options.

General Options

In the General Options window that opens, simply blank out the passwords that you want to remove and then click OK.

General Options

Additionally, if opening the document is password protected, you will see the following informational message in backstage view when you click the File tab.

A Password Is Required To Open The Document

There is also another way to remove the password required to open the document: if you click on the Protect Document button seen in the image above and then click Encrypt with Password, you will see the password window below.

Encrypt Document

Again, blank out the password and click OK to remove it.

Of course, the above only works if you are able to open the document in the first place, and that requires knowing the password.

Password Recovery Software

If you don’t know the password that was assigned to a document, then you won’t be able to use any of the above methods. Instead, you will have to use password recovery software. There is a variety of different software solutions for removing password from Office documents, and some of the more popular ones are:

We don’t know whether any of the above solutions are any good, but we intend to review each of them.

Protect A Word Document

There are many different kinds of protection you can give to your Word 2010 document. You can protect your document in the following ways:

Encrypt With Password

You can make it so that anyone who wants to open a document has to supply a password. Click the File tab > Info > Protect Document (in the Permissions section) > Encrypt with password.

Encrypt With Password

In the password window that opens, type in a password.

Encrypt Document

You will need to supply the password twice. Now, whenever someone tries to open the document, they will be presented with a password window similar to the one above. They will need to supply the correct password before they can see the document.

When a document has been protected this way, you will see the following in backstage view:

Word Permissions

Mark as Final

Marking a document as final makes it read-only, so no changes can be made to it. This setting is advisory only. You can quite easily make the document available for further editing by reversing the steps outlined below. Marking as final indicates that editing is complete and that this is the final version of the document. Click the File tab > Info > Protect Document (in the Permissions section) > Mark as final. When the confirmation window is displayed, click OK.

Mark As Final

Restrict style formatting

You can restrict the kinds of style formatting changes that can be made by clicking File > Info > Protect Document > Restrict Editing, and in the Formatting restrictions section, check the Limit Formatting to a selection of styles box.

Restrict Formatting And Editing

If you then click Settings you will be able to select all the formatting styles that you want to be allowed (for example, Body Text, Heading 1, etc).

Formatting Restrictions In Word


Editing Restrictions

Similar to the above, click File > Info > Protect Document > Restrict Editing, and in the Editing restrictions section, check the Allow only this type of editing in the document.

Editing Restrictions

If you select from the drop down list Tracked changes, Comments or Filling in forms, then only those kinds of edits will be allowed. If, instead, you select Read only then you can define exceptions – that is, areas of the document that can be edited. To do this, select a region to which you wish to allow editing, and then in the Exceptions section, select each user who should be given this privilege.

Restrict Open and Modify

You can prevent people opening and/or modifying a document by clicking the File tab > Save as > Tools > General options.

General Options

Enter a password into the Password to open box to restrict opening of the document and a password into the Password to modify box to… well you can guess.

General Options Window

If you found this tutorial interesting, you may find the How To Remove The Password From Word tutorial useful, too.

Display The Ruler In CMs In Word

The ruler in Microsoft Word runs horizontally along the top of your workspace and helps you align the elements in your document correctly.

The Ruler In Word

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If you can’t see a ruler, go to View tab and make sure that Ruler is checked (in the Show group):

Display The Ruler In Word

But the numbers that are displayed on the ruler Рwhat do they refer to? That is, what units of measure does the ruler use?  To determine which units you are using, or to change them, click the File tab > Options, and click on the Advanced tab on the left. In the Display section, you should see the Show measurements in units of dropdown selector.

Ruler Units Of Measure In Word

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This shows you the units currently being used, and also allows you to change them. You’ll find that the most popular units are inches and centimeters, but the whole list of options is here:

  • Inches
  • Centimeters
  • Millimeters
  • Points
  • Picas

Knowing the units of measure being used is helpful when you are dealing with margins, for example. In the image below, you can tell at a glance that the left margin is set to be 2.5 cm, if you know that your units of measure are centimeters.

Margins In Word