Evernote: For Organizing Your Digital Life

With all the media that we are exposed to every day, it is no wonder that people are often overwhelmed by the amount of information they come into contact with. For example, some of us are being told to use more technology in our classrooms, but researching what tools we would like to use and what might work best with out student populations and classroom setup is a daunting task. Others are just searching for content to use in our lessons, but even that can turn up more than what is manageable.

Just from doing one search online, you might find a ton of interesting and useful information, but without a useful way of organizing it, you will inevitably lose or forget about it in no time at all. Enter Evernote.

Evernote is a powerful little app that can help you organize everything. It is easy to register for and, even better, has free basic accounts. With Evernote, you can write notes like the ones that used to be on Post-its all over my computer, as well as save and organize websites, pictures, and your own notes. With advanced accounts, you can even create presentations, and you have a 30-day free trial to decide if you want that feature. Creating an account is simple and, if you hit any snags along the way, just check out the guide for your platform or device. The video tutorials will lead you through everything.

Imagine that you go looking for a video to use with your current unit, but find something that would work well for the next one instead. Just save the link in a virtual notebook for that unit and continue with your search. If you come across an article another instructor might appreciate, save that as a new note and share it via e-mail or social media. You can always go back and find the video or article again by looking in the appropriate notebook or searching for it by name in Evernote. It is amazing!

Since Evernote syncs everything on all your devices, it does not matter if you are on a smartphone, tablet, or computer, and you can access everything from any of your devices at any time. Evernote might not have been made specifically for educators, but it certainly is a big help and it is just an added bonus that it works for personal to-dos and grocery lists, too. If only I had had this sooner…

Try it out and let us know what you think. How are you are keeping digital materials organized now?

About Tara Arntsen

Tara Arntsen
Tara Arntsen recently completed her Master's degree in Teaching-TESOL at the University of Southern California. She currently teaches in the Intensive English Program at Northern State University in Aberdeen, South Dakota. She has taught ESOL in China, Japan, and Cambodia as well as online. Her primary interests are communicative teaching methods and the use of technology in education.
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