How do you stay organized? If you are looking to revisit your organizational strategy, I have three tools to consider adding to your tool belt. In today’s blog post, I’ll share three of my favorite organizational tools for teachers. We’ll look at ways you can use them to stay organized this school year. The three are often on my list of favorite EdTech tools to use with students. So these use cases might surprise you!
Now, if you’ve followed along for a while, you know how I love any tool (or new strategy) that helps me stay productive and save time. I’m all about ease and efficiency whenever possible, and having systems and routines is essential. This is true when organizing content for my blog and podcast, and was definitely true in my role as a classroom teacher.
Organizational Tools for Teachers
This blog post is a modified version of the transcript to a past episode of the Easy EdTech Podcast. It’s a little more conversational than how I normally write — because this is taken from a favorite podcast episode. Rather listen than read? Click here for one version or press play below for another option.
In this blog post, I have highlighted three EdTech tools to help you stay organized. They are all free and you can jump in and use them right away. In addition to these three tools, I also created some free planning pages. These might be useful if you’re looking to update your weekly schedule, too. Let’s dive in!
Listeners of my EasyEdTech Podcast may have already heard the podcast episode on reasons I love Google Keep. First on our list of three tools, is this free, Google-friendly option. I use Google Keep for digital to-do lists that I can access from different places. Between the Google Keep extension in my email inbox to the Google Keep app on my iPhone, it’s easy for all of my notes to sync across devices.
Although the fact that Google Keep can sync across devices might be reason enough, it’s not the only reason to add it to your toolbelt. You may find Google Keep to be especially helpful because of its collaborative features. Similar to Google Docs or Slides, you can add a collaborator and share your notes and to do lists with a colleague. Now if you want to take your Google Keep game up a notch, you can even make your own header images with a tool like Spark Post. This way you can color-code your notes or add photographs to different to-do lists.
The next tool on the list that can help you stay organized is Wakelet. Rachel Coathup recently came on the Easy EdTech Podcast to share why Wakelet is a favorite tool in her toolbelt. This free tool lets you create collections of resources so you can keep links, tweets, files, and videos all in one place.
Just like Google Keep, you can use Wakelt on your own or as a collaborative tool. This means you might create a collection of kid-friendly podcasts to share with families in your class. Or you might partner up and collaborate with a colleague on your grade level team to create a collection of resources all of your students can use for an upcoming research project. Wakelet makes it easy to create collections in just a few steps and can help you keep all of your “favorites” organized.
Regular readers of the blog know how much I love Adobe Spark tools — Ben Forta and I even wrote a book full of activity ideas featuring Spark. Although you might think of Adobe Spark as a creativity tool for student projects, I’ve included it on this list of tools to help you stay organized. I love Spark Page as an option for professional portfolios. It helps you organize professional resources, artifacts and reflections all in one place.
Last year on Edutopia’s blog, I shared a post titled “Using a Portfolio to Document Remote Teaching Experience.” Spark Page lets you organize links, text and snapshots all in one place and update your professional portfolio over the course of the school year. With this webpage-builder tool you can organize your success stories, struggles, and anything else you would like to include as part of your portfolio.
Which one of these organizational tools for teachers is your favorite? In addition to Google Keep, Wakelet and Spark Page, you might want to add these planner pages to your routine, too. They are totally free and hundreds of people have downloaded them already! Do you have a favorite EdTech tool to help you stay organized? Share in the comments below!