Monday, May 23, 2011

Long Live Evernote

I may have written about Evernote before, but feel compelled to do so again now that I have an iPad2. I first found out about Evernote on Twitter. I first downloaded it on my laptop. Since I brought my laptop to work this made recording student conferences easier. I soon found it irksome to lug my laptop around the classroom. Particularly because the battery life leaves something to be desired.

Luckily Evernote has a Droid app. I downloaded it from the app market and soon recording my conferences became even more mobile. At first I was typing in the conferences. A bit on the difficult side since the keyboard is rather tiny on the Droid. But soon the app was updated and I was able to voice record the conferences. Tis soon proves to be a gem. Not only was it quicker to record but when my students asked,"what were you saying about..." I could hand over my telephone or iPod (it syncs to all devices) and let them listen again.

The only draw back of using my phone was if I conferred w/ a partnership or small group. It took me forever to type in whose notes to reference. This is where the Evernote app becomes a dream on the iPad2. Walking around to confer with my students was made so much easier. I could still voice record my notes. But going to type in references for partners was so much quicker because of the larger QWERTY keyboard.

Twice today I was able to confer with my entire class! Not everyone can have an iPad, laptop, and smartphone, but even if you have one of those things, your life would be made so much easier with an Evernote app. You can not only voice record and/or type your conference notes, but you can also take photos of student work, video conference and then put them in the folder you have created for the student. Plus you can tag each note. I have a tag for writer's workshop, reader's workshop, and math workshop. This makes cataloging the notes a bit easier. Not to mention that each folder tells you how many notes you have in each folder and you can easily see which children you need to confer with a bit more consistently.