Showing posts with label email tips. Show all posts
Showing posts with label email tips. Show all posts

Monday, August 9, 2021

Three Time-saving Email Tips for Teachers

Like most people I have a love-hate relationship with my email inbox. Over the years I've tried all kinds of tricks and tools to try to handle my inbox more efficiently. What I've found is that those tricks and tools only work if I also use a time-blocking strategy to decide to clear my inbox (something I only started doing after reading Cal Newport's Deep Work for the second time). Once I have my time block in place then the following tools help me work through my inbox in a relatively efficient manner. 

Message Templates/ Canned Responses
Gmail and Outlook will let you create message templates that you can quickly use as responses to emails or as the basis of an entirely new email. This video will show you how to use Canned Responses in Gmail. Outlook users can create canned responses to use to answer frequently asked questions in your inbox. Here’s a good video overview of how to create and use canned responses in Outlook.

Email Filtering
Not every email needs an immediate response. Not every email needs to be stored in your primary inbox where it clutters and distracts from the task at hand. Create email filters to organize and prioritize the messages landing in your inbox. This video and this video will show you show how to create filters in Gmail and other Google Workspace email accounts. Outlook users, this video is a good place for you to start to learn about using filters and folders.

Schedule Outgoing Email
Let's say it's Thursday evening and you're working on a list of reminders to send to students and or parents for the following week. If you send it that evening, you'll be getting replies all weekend which you can either reply to or ignore until Monday morning. There's a better option. That option is to schedule those reminder emails to not be sent until Sunday night or Monday morning. Here's my video about how to do that.



Outlook users can also schedule emails to be sent at a later date. Here's a great tutorial on how to do that.

Thursday, March 25, 2021

A Quick Tip for Categorizing Gmail Messages

The default inbox arrangement in Gmail consists of a Primary tab, a Social tab, and a Promotions tab. Gmail generally does a pretty good job of accurately sorting messages into those tabs. There are some occasions when messages that should appear in the Primary tab appear in Promotions and times when messages that should be in the Promotions tab land in the Primary tab. Fortunately, there is an easy way to remedy that problem. 

You can move messages from one Gmail tab to another by just clicking on the subject line of a message and then dragging it to the tab that you want it to be in. When you do that you'll see a small pop-up message asking if you want to have all future emails from that sender appear in tab to which you just moved the message. Watch this short video to see how this process works. 



Applications for Education
While rare, there are times when a message from a teacher to a student or student to a teacher lands in the wrong tab. Dragging the message back to the proper tab can help prevent that from happening again. Then the challenge is to get students to actually open their inboxes!

Friday, August 28, 2020

Back-to-School Email Tips & Reminders

Every year at this time I share some cute videos intended to help students understand proper email etiquette. This year those lessons are going to be more important than ever as we're all likely to get more email from students than ever before. Here are some tips and reminders to make everyone's use of email a little bit better.

IT Support is Done by Humans
I know that this fall many teachers are being forced to use technology in new ways that are pushing the boundaries of their comfort zones. That said, when you email your IT support person this fall remember that he or she is a real person who is probably grossly underpaid for his/her skill set. Say thank you when they fix your problem or otherwise help you, it goes a long way.

Emailing Your Teacher, With Captain Communicator is my favorite video about email etiquette. The short video features two students demonstrating how to write an email to a teacher. The students remind viewers of the importance of using a proper greeting and closing. It's cute and well worth 90 seconds of your time.

Email Etiquette for Students was made by a teacher. I've used and shared this video for years.



Common Craft offers a video titled Clear Communication in Email. It is a good video about how to get a recipient's attention and get a recipient to reply. A couple of small things go a long way toward getting better responses or even a response at all.



This week's Practical Ed Tech Newsletter featured a bunch of time-saving tips for the new school year. One of those tips included using smart replies and email templates. Watch this video to learn how to do those things and more.

Thursday, April 2, 2020

A Few Short Lessons and Reminders About Email

Earlier this week I Tweeted a plea to try to remember to use basic niceties when sending emails seeking help from me or anyone else who is providing remote tech support right now. This morning I got a request from a friend on Instagram to re-post some of the videos and tips about email etiquette and email management that I've shared in the past. That's what you'll find listed below.

Before jumping into the videos below I want to acknowledge that we're all in a stressful situation right now. Many are being pushed out of their comfort zones right now. One way to help relieve a little stress for everyone is to just remember to do basic things like address people by name and say please and thank you. It will make the IT support person who has had a long day feel little more appreciated. As I saw someone Tweet yesterday, "IT support is done by people, not machines."

Emailing Your Teacher, With Captain Communicator is the cutest video about email etiquette that I've seen. The short video features two students demonstrating how to write an email to a teacher. It's well worth 90 seconds of your time.

The following video was made by a teacher for the purpose of sharing email etiquette tips with students. It's a bit more serious that the Captain Communicator video.



Watch Clear Email Communication by Common Craft to learn how to get a recipient's attention and how to get a response from that recipient.




Time-saving Email Tips
In the following video I highlighted five features of Gmail that teachers should know how to use. A few of these can be big time-savers for you.



Disclosure: I have a long-standing, in-kind relationship with Common Craft.

Saturday, January 18, 2020

A Tip for Your Colleagues Who Unnecesarily Use "Reply All"

In a presentation that I occasionally give about the evolution of educational technology I have a slide that lists classic online discussion tools. On that slide I have a bullet point that reads, Group Email (which everyone hates). That slide always gets a chuckle from the audience because everyone has a colleague that uses "reply all" far more often than is necessary. If you use G Suite for Education, you avoid being that colleague by making a small change in your Gmail settings.

In Gmail settings you can set the default reply behavior to be "reply" instead of "reply all." Making that change means that you never have to worry about accidentally sending a reply a group unless it is absolutely necessary for everyone in the group to see your reply. See my screenshot below for directions.

Thursday, October 6, 2016

A Cute Video About Email Etiquette for Students

Next Vista for Learning is a unique video sharing website because it focuses on sharing videos made by students to help other students (you will also find some videos made by teachers). One good example of this can be found in Emailing Your Teacher, With Captain Communicator. The short video features two students demonstrating how to write an email to a teacher. It's cute and well worth 90 seconds of your time.


On a related note, the following video produced by a teacher and shared on YouTube outlines five email etiquette tips for students.