Showing posts with label organization tools. Show all posts
Showing posts with label organization tools. Show all posts

Saturday, November 11, 2017

Using Icons to Help Organize Google Drive Folders

Remember what your Google Drive looked like when you first started using it? It was neat, organized, and free of clutter. As you began to use Drive more frequently, you probably started creating folders and perhaps you are now looking for a way to organize them. In addition to color coding your files, you can add emojis and other symbols to your folders to help you identify them quickly and easily.

The first thing you need to do is open your Drive and identify a folder that you would like to add a symbol or emoji to. Make sure the symbol you select is something that helps you remember the contents of the folder. Maybe you use a snowflake for activities that pertain to winter or a test tube for chemistry lessons. All that matters is that your icon makes sense to you. Once you have selected your folder, navigate to one of the sites below, select the symbol you want to use, copy it, edit the name of the folder then paste the icon into the box where the folder name appears.

Symbol and emoji sites:

Monday, July 28, 2014

Get Organized for Back-to-School with Trello

This is a guest post from Beth Holland of, an advertiser on this blog.

With Back-to-School ads starting to crop up all over the place, and summer hitting its blissful stride, that can only mean one thing: it’s time to start prepping for Fall. For years, a myriad of ideas, plans, and to-do lists plagued me for the entire month of August. I tried a number of different tools to keep track: iCal, Google Tasks, a paper planner….

However, a few things made each of these items completely ineffective for me:
  1. I needed to seamlessly access my to-do lists from anywhere and at any time - this ruled out paper as I often left my notebook on the kitchen counter, at my desk at school, on someone else’s desk, etc.
  2. Some items needed due dates and some didn’t. The old iCal let me use a combination of tasks and events, but I had to remember to sync devices.
  3. Google Tasks worked great - as long as I had Internet.
  4. Having never worked in isolation, I also needed a way to keep track of everything and share all of my tasks and ideas with colleagues.
Last spring, I discovered my solution: Trello! Not only does it work on all devices, allow me to choose whether or not I need due dates, permit me to collaborate with others, and let me work offline when on a mobile phone or tablet, but Trello also gives me a simple visual for organizing all of my tasks: 3 columns - To Do, Doing, and Done - as well as the ability to attach files from either my device or the cloud (Drive or Dropbox).

Screen Shot 2014-07-24 at 4.50.32 PM

Best part of all, with the iOS app, Android app, or Chrome Extension, Trello removes the need to email collaborators. Simply assign a colleague to a card in Trello and the system alerts members to new tasks.

While it’s still necessary to enjoy these last few weeks of summer, start adding cards to your Trello boards so that you won’t forget all of your ideas when it comes time to get back to school. Besides, you might even be able to use it to organize your students next fall.

Looking for last minute learning opportunities this summer? EdTechTeacher still has space available in their Austin and Los Angeles Summer Workshops in August.

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Organize Your Thoughts and Tasks With Thought Boxes

Thought Boxes is a task management service with a hint of mind mapping in its user interface. At its most basic Thought Boxes is a place to create to-do lists. You can organize your to-do lists into groups that Thought Boxes refers to as "trains" as in "trains of thought." Your lists can include basic text notes as well as links to other sites. The trains that you create in Thought Boxes are basically categories for your to-do lists. For example, in the screenshot below you will see that I created a train for tasks related to my teaching responsibilities.

You can rearrange the boxes in each of your trains in your Thought Boxes account by just dragging and dropping them into place. The free version of Thought Boxes does not allow you to share your trains with others.

Applications for Education
Thought Boxes could be useful for managing to-do lists associated with academic projects. Students could also use Thought Boxes to organize all parts of their academic lives. They could create a "train" of to-do lists for their classes, a "train" for extracurricular clubs, and a "train" for responsibilities at home.

Thought Boxes doesn't have to be used for to-do lists. Students could use Thought Boxes to create an outline for essays they're writing or a video they're producing. Being able to drag and drop boxes into a sequence makes it easier for students to quickly rearrange their thoughts to fit the needs of their outlines. 

Friday, June 1, 2012

ReadCube - A Desktop Tool for Organizing Research

ReadCube is a desktop application for Windows and Mac that aims to help you organize your research literature better. I initially tried it out last fall and found it to be a powerful tool even if it wasn't the most intuitive tool I've ever tried. This morning I received an email announcing that ReadCube is now available to anyone that wants to try it out. Therefore, I thought I would reintroduce it to you today.

ReadCube provides a place for students to save and annotate scholarly documents. Through ReadCube students can search Google Scholar and Pub Med. Students can also import to ReadCube PDFs that they find elsewhere. The video below offers a short overview of what ReadCube can do.

ReadCube Intro from R3 on Vimeo.

Applications for Education
When you download ReadCube, it will ask you for your university email. Don't be discouraged by that, I was able to register using my K-12 school email account. But the fact they ask for your university email account is an indication that Read Cube is clearly targeted to a higher ed audience. Still, Read Cube could be useful for some high school students working on long-term research assignments. You might also consider using it yourself for your next continuing education course.