Teachers are asked to do many things.
We are asked to present material in an interesting way, which means more preparation beforehand. We are asked to do project-based and performance-based assessment, which entail more time-intensive grading. We are asked to write across the curriculum. Oh, and a parent emailed you a question about his son’s grade. While you’re pondering a response, you are asked to fill out paperwork required by your district. By the way, progress reports are due next week, and you still have ungraded late work in your bin. Say, when was the last time you changed your bulletin boards? Oh, look! There is paperwork in your box to hand out to the students, and it must go out this afternoon. Have you collected all the permission slips for next week’s trip yet?
Does this sound familiar?
I struggled with this for many, many years, until I discovered Google Tasks.
Google tasks is a way to create a to-do list linked with your gmail page. All your items are automatically saved, and you can clear them when you are finished. Unlike sticky notes, they will not create a pile of yellow paper on your desk. Unlike a note on real paper, you will not find a page with a series of crossed out items with a few stragglers left behind.
Now why is it “life-saving?” Because you can synch it with your cell phone and tablet. You can type in Google Tasks for a search in the Google Play Store or the Apple App Store to find a series of working apps. Have you ever gotten all the way to the faculty room, returned, and then suddenly realized that you forgot to do something that could only be done… in the faculty room? With Google Tasks, you can check your list anywhere to make sure you don’t forget when you are away from your classroom.
I am sure that you can do something similar with iPhone/iPad programs. My point is this: regardless of what platform or system you use, in today’s world of education, many of us need something.
For me, it was a life-saver.