Thursday, September 23, 2010
A New Love
Evernote. I've been hearing about it on twitter from a couple of folks (@coolcatteacher & @newfirewithin). I will say that it wasn't love at first sight. When I first saw it, I didn't have the time to check it out & so on the back burner it went. After hearing about how one teacher used Evernote with his students, I was prompted to check it out again.
Here is what I discovered. I can access Evernote on-line, on my laptop (they have a desk-top application), & on my cellphone. WOW! And...not only can I access it from all of these places, I can take notes in a variety of ways. I can type, audio record, video record or picture. The application allows you to do much, much more. For instance, I can see a link on twitter & Evernote it. I can find a webpage & Evernote it. I'm sure there is even more I haven't discovered! Did I mention that you can also tag your notes & they sync between all devices?
This is what I really wanted to use Evernote for...my classroom. I'm a teacher, why else would I want a cool tech tool? And, once I started using it in my classroom I feel even harder. I always find conferring difficult. Not because of the nature of conferring, but because I found the record keeping cumbersome. I tried post - it notes & then transferred them to a notebook. Hated it. I tried a notebook with pages designated for each child. Hated it. I tried a plan book & hated it. But now that I have Evernote, I find it much more enjoyable.
Until today, I was using strictly my laptop. I knew, once I began using Evernote, that there would come a time I would have to leave my laptop plugged in to the SMART Board so my students could continue accessing what was displayed. Today was that day. I got the opportunity to record my conference notes on my smartphone. At first, I attempted recording them using the keypad. It was cumbersome & not nearly as efficient as typing. So, I decided to try out the audio note. It worked well! I was able to easily record what the students & I said. But then, I discovered an added bonus. A few of the students I conferred with were attempting to apply what I had just taught them in the conference. They were struggling to remember what I had said. I pulled out a splitter & some earbuds & pressed play. Even better ~ they could play it as often as they needed to! They were then able to effortlessly apply the suggestion & move on to more independent practice.
If you get the opportunity, you have to check it out! It's just a click away on your computer & smartphone...