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In this new series, author and educator Aaron Quigley shows you how to stay up to date with the latest educational technology and classroom management techniques. Each week, he'll introduce you to a new tip you can use to be more efficient, and increase student achievement. Aaron covers concepts like the flipped classroom, Common Core Standards, and the role of social media in education. The series also covers a variety of productivity apps, learning management systems, and other technologies, using a project-based approach that simulates the real K–12 or university classroom environment. Check back often for new tutorials, every Monday with Teacher Tips.
Hi, I'm Aaron Quigley, and welcome to another edition of Teacher Tips. This week, we're going to talk about how we can take all this countless paperwork that comes across teachers' desks, and organize it using the program Evernote. If you're not familiar with Evernote, I recommend taking some time to check out Up and Running with Evernote, by David Rivers, on the lynda.com website. He has two different courses, one for Mac users and Window users. In today's presentation, I'll be using Evernote on a Mac. As educators, there's a lot of information that we need to constantly organize. We have lesson plans and papers to grade.
We have documents for our school. We also have ideas that we'd like to keep track of for implementing next year. Today what we're going to do is talk about how we can take all of this stuff and roll it into a nice convenient place that will allow us to organize ourselves, create the ability to search all of our forms and documents as well as categorize the various documents we deal with on a daily basis. Here in Evernote I've already created a very simple teacher account. I've gone through and I've set up various notebooks. To add a notebook you simply click on the Add New Notebook function. And maybe I want to have a different notebook that's for field trip organization.
(NOISE) Now, inside of each of these notebooks we can organize notes. Notes can be anything that you have digitally on your computer, including webpages. A note could be a lesson plan document that you want to upload. Or it could be a Word document or PowerPoint presentation that your students turned in. Using Evernote as an educator there's a few best practices to allow us to streamline our day to day classroom activities. The first I'd like to talk about is how we can use Evernote to organize and categorize websites that we deal with on a daily basis.
I'm going to up my web browser, and here I have two different tabs open with two websites that I probably want to have access to. One is the Common Course state initiative website? And the other is the NSTA, or the National Science Teachers Association website. As a science teacher I'm constantly moving in out of the science standards, yet I need to keep in mind the Common Core State Standards as well. So what I'm going to do is go ahead and that both of these websites to my Evernote account. I can do that by clicking on the small icon next to their web address. Here I can click and drag that website to the elephant in the upper icon bar and go ahead and release.
You'll notice that it added this web link box, and now I can go ahead and click Save To Evernote. I'm going to do the same thing for the NSTA website, grab the web link, drag it up to the Evernote elephant and go ahead and release and then click Save To Evernote. Back in Evernote, when I click on the Notes tab, I now see that I have two websites that are there. I can go ahead and change the title for these by double-clicking on the title. This first one I'm going to type NSTA. Let me take a look at the second note, and I'll type CCSS.
And now what I can do, is I can categorize these links by adding tags to them. At some point in time, I might have hundreds of websites built into Evernote. So what I'd like to do is be able to search for some tags to quickly pull up these websites. Up here, where it says Click To Add Tags, I'm going to click, and I'm going to go ahead and type standards. I'm also going to click right next to standards, and I'm going to type, common core. So now if I went to the Search Notes function and I just started typing something like standards, I could see that the Standards tag comes up.
And inside the Standards tag I have one note, which is my Common Core State Standards. I'm going to go ahead and remove the search field so I can go ahead and categorize and add tags to the NSTA one, as well. Now these are standards as well. But these standards are science, so I'm going to add standards and then I'll add science. So I know have the NST note categorized with both standards and science so if I decide to search for it in the future, I can easily find what I'm looking for.
Now that I have these two notes categorized, what I'd like to do is go ahead and organize them into the appropriate notebooks. I'm just going to choose one. Drag it over to the Notebook section. Wait for it to open up my various notebooks. And then I'll go ahead and just categorize them. I think these can go in just my regular teachers notebook. Since I will use them as a teacher. So, now if I come to the Notebook section, and I click on the Teachers Notebook. I can see that I have two different notes in there. Both show that they are weblinks and I have access to the common course state standards and the NSTA standards.
Let's go ahead and head back to notebooks and this time let's go into educational ideas. As teachers, we come across a lot of educational ideas that may not be applicable to our current classes but we may want to think about taking the summer to really research them and implement them the following year. Here's a great way to store that information until you're ready to use it. I'm going to go and create a new note in educational ideas. I'm going to title this note new lesson plan. Now if I wanted to and I had this new lesson plan just in my mind, could go ahead and just type out all the information that I'd like.
But I'd actually found online a lesson plan template that I'd like to use. So what I'm going to do is use the attach file button in the righthand corner and I'm going to select that for my desktop. Here's my science lesson plan template. I'll go ahead and click Open. And now I have a attachment to this note that I can reference the following year. Further, what I'm going to do is start using reminders inside of my notes. To do this, I'll click on this small Reminder icon. And I'm going to go ahead and add a date. I would like to be reminded at the end of the school year, let's say, June 15th, to come back and review this file.
So I'm going to go ahead and click away from that. I'm going to say, yes, please email me on the day that notes are due. And I now have a reminder set up so at the end of the school year, when the summer starts, I'll receive an email telling me to check out this new science lesson plan template. In addition to website and documents, sometimes we need to organize lists and to-do items as a teacher. Let's go ahead and access this new notebook called Field Trip Organization. Here, what I'd like to do is to create a checklist that I can use every single time I have a field trip. I'm simply going to create a new note in my field trip organization. I'm going to title this note, field trip planner.
(SOUND) So when I'm planning a field trip, there's several things that I need to do. I need to make sure that I arrange buses. Order student lunches, print permission slips, print class rosters, so I can take attendance on the field trip. And then contact parents for chaperones. Now, because these are to-do items, what I'd like to do is go ahead and add a check box for each individual item. So I'll go ahead and place my cursor right next to the text. I will come up to the navigation bar, and click the Check Box icon to add a check box in front of each one of these elements.
So when I pull up this note, I can choose to make changes to the note by simply checking off various items as I move through this field trip planning process. Furthermore, I want to set the due date for this particular field trip. To do that, I'm going to go and click on my schedule icon. I'm going to add a date, and I want to have all this stuff done by next week. So I'm just going to click the In a Week button. I've now automatically created a reminder that will show up at the top of my field trip organization folder. So even if I had a hundred different notes in here, the minute I open this folder, I would automatically see this field trip reminder at the top left-hand corner.
Furthermore, I want to be able to search and find this field trip plan in the future. So I'm going to go ahead and add some tags to it. Lets call this field trip. And we'll add another tag of checklist. So in the future I can search for checklists and find a variety of checklists that I've created or I can search for field trip and this will also show up in that search. However, if I also search field trip checklist very specifically then this field trip planner will show up and probably be fairly high in my search list.
This way I can quickly pull this note back up. And reuse this note every single time I have a field trip. At this point, we've talked about how we can use Evernote to organize websites, to organize information that comes across our desks, as well as to create checklists and reminders for future use. The next step, is to talk about how we can use Evernote during our actual lessons.
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