Friday, July 16, 2010

Keeping Your Desktop Free of Clutter and Deleting Those 100 Folders in Your My Documents Folder

Computers are great things. In addition to being an excellent instructional tool, they can also be tools that make our jobs as educators easier. The problem is, many times we do not take advantage of the capabilities of that technology. In fact, we often take what we know from the real world and apply it in the cyber world. For example, the idea of using folders in which to place individual items. We have what I call the “file-cabinet” mindset. We think if we place all those forms in a folder labeled “Employment Forms” we will be able to find them easier. Not always true! The file cabinet mindset tells me to look through the folders alphabetically and I will find it quickly. The truth is, there is a much quicker way. In fact, I do not use folders at all on my computer, except for a docs folder, docs-archive folder, and a program shortcuts folder. The folks at came up with this organizational scheme. Because the files on your computer are fully searchable, you do not need to place them in neat, individual folders. Using Google Desktop, I can find it twice as fast as someone who is searching in their folders.

At any rate, I am going to be doing some efficiency training with teachers and administrators August, and I wanted to share some of the materials I have developed for that. Below is a presentation I have developed for one of those sessions. It focuses on strategies for making files accessible on your computer and for keeping your desktop organized.

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