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Section Breaks – “…it stops everything moving around!”

“Wow! It stops everything moving around!”

“Section Breaks, Section Breaks my kingdom for a Section Break…” (or a page break at least)

Perhaps the most underused formatting option in the realm of Microsoft Word*!

In my experience the Layout, Break, Page or Section Break is one of the simplest formatting options that people either don’t know about, or lazily underuse. I reminded a colleague recently and they exclaimed “Wow! It stops everything moving around!”

Two docs, one portrait, and another landscape… One doc is colour and the other needs to print on the back in mono.

Combining Documents

Instead of keying return return return… to reach the end of a page, you can simply jump to the next page with a section break!

Click: Layout, Break, Page or Section Break

  • For one, this can solve the problem of ‘everything moving’ when you change an earlier paragraph.
  • Secondly, in the ‘new section/page’ you can then change your page orientation, margins etc… So we can insert a landscape page after the portrait page.

If you format your articles/chapters etc with Next Page Section Breaks it can all stay organised.

Another underused tip: If you click Show/Hide (Ctrl+Shift+8) you can see your hidden formatting symbols – which can be useful!

So we can add a landscape page (in a new section) after the portrait page.

‘Select All’ (Ctrl A), then copy (Crtl C) the content of our landscape document and paste (Crtl V) the content into the new one.

Colour and Mono in one document!

Often a black & white looking graphic is actually ‘a dark mix’ of colours, and should ideally be converting to proper grayscale!

Hidden colour £0.10p.         Grayscale 1p

Hidden colour £0.10p.     Grayscale 1p

Converting dirty images to greyscale will save you money – your printer will then charge it as mono and not as a colour page – these costs mount up when you’re printing a whole year group!

In Word, simply double or right click on an image that looks black and white and convert it to true grayscale.

Format Picture – Picture Colour – Grayscale.

(While you are at it you could compress all the pictures in your document and probably half the file size!… Double click and image and compress, selecting ‘all images’…)

*Formatting your documents is a good habit to get into. If you only use one new thing in your next Word doc, make it section breaks… it stops everything moving around!