Monday, February 6, 2012

Table It!...Part 1

While at RootsTech, I had the pleasure of talking to Michelle, a follower of this blog. She suggested that I write about adding tables to a Word document. Michelle explained that she likes to use tables to show census results in reports that she prepares for clients.

I'm going to start this series with a tip on how to add rows to the middle of a table. I'm starting with this piece of info because most people work their way through inserting a table but struggle when they have to add a row mid table. The shortcut is so hidden that most people don't know about it and it's handy to know.

Add a Row Mid Table on the Fly
  1. After you have a table inserted, turn on the hidden codes and look for the little squares to the right of the table. In the example above, you need to insert a row between Michael Jones and Nathan Jones.
  2. Look at the end of the row for Michael Jones.
  3. Click your cursor to the right of the line ending the table row and the left of the little square.
  4. Press the Enter key. Word adds an empty row between Michael Jones and Nathan Jones and moves your cursor to the first empty cell.
This method works in any version of Word. After you know where to place your cursor, you don't need to have the hidden codes showing. You can simply click to the right of the row where you want to add the row and press Enter. However, you need to see the symbols the first time you insert a row so that you know why it's working.

I'll start at the beginning in my next post.


  1. As usual there are always multiple ways to do things!

    I have always placed my Cursor at the end of the line/row and then from the Toolbar selected Table ->Insert->Rows Above OR Rows Below.

  2. For every one way you'll find to do a task in Word, there are usually at least two other methods that work as well or better.

    Using the menu to insert (or remove) is the method that most people are aware of to add or remove rows. When you select from the menu, you can actually place your cursor anywhere in the row to add a row or do any number of other tasks.

    If you're working in Word 2007/2010, you can also right-click in a row (or beside a row) to display a popup menu and use the Insert option to add rows or columns.

    When you're moving fast, right clicking when trying to do a task brings up a context menu; that is, a menu with options related to the task that Word thinks you're trying to complete. Sometimes Word is way off. Other times Word shows a menu that will save you lots of time and effort.

  3. It was wonderful to visit with you earlier this month in Salt Lake! This little tip is a golden gem as it's much quicker than using either of the menu methods to quickly add a row.

    I'm just getting caught up and looking foward to reading the rest of the table series to learn what I've been missing!

  4. I was pleased to meet you too! I always enjoy meeting people who follow this blog. It gives me a chance to find out what type of info each of you might need.

    Writing a blog of this type is sorta like a message in a bottle. You hope you wrote the right message, and tossed the bottle at the right time and place so that the person who need the message finds it. Sooo...toss the bottle back my way (post a comment) when I'm not hitting topics you're interested in.