Sunday, March 13, 2011

5 Ways School Administrators Can Use Evernote

Evernote has rocketed to the top of my most-often-used applications in recent months. It is one of the first desktop applications I open in the morning, and one of the last ones I close in the afternoons at the end of the day. Last spring, I purchased a premium account, and it has been well worth the money. Evernote is clearly an administrator must-have application. Below are some of the ways I use Evernote as an administrator.

  • Use Evernote to collect all the notes, bits of information, and copies of digital information that come across your desk during the course of a day.  As a school administrator, there is a constant flow of things into my office, and keeping it accessible and organized is a must. I don't use a file cabinet or paper copies of anything anymore. Everything I do is electronic. Evernote gives me a place to organize this information for later accessibility. I can copy and paste pertinent parts of emails or documents and paste them in an Evernote note in my "Inbasket" notebook. I am even thinking about getting a scanner so that I can scan and include these items in my electronic files too. Evernote makes collecting easy, and it makes organizing what you're collecting easy too.
  • Use Evernote to create and maintain To Do Lists. I have a To Do List every single day, and I create it electronically and place it in my To Do List notebook. This allows me to easily transfer those "undone" tasks to the next day’s To Do List. Since I have the Evernote app on both my Android phone and my iPad, I can access my To Do List at any time and wherever I happen to be. Because Evernote allows me to put a "checkbox" in my lists, I can check off tasks as I do them too. There's satisfaction of being about look back through my To Do Lists after a period of time and see what I have accomplished.
  • Use Evernote to collect ideas and information from professional reading.  Those that know me, know I usually read four or five books at a time, and that I am a copious note taker. I love collecting thoughts, ideas, quotes, and snippets of information from my reading. I have a "Professional Reading" notebook in Evernote where I place notes from my reading. Because I can access Evernote from practically any where, I have constant access to them.
  • Use Evernote to make instant copies of engaging web information. My reading includes following a number of blogs, and a daily list of about 200 RSS feeds that I follow through Google Reader. While I can use Diigo to bookmark an engaging article, Evernote allows me to snapshot the whole thing and place it in an appropriate Evernote notebook. For example, I recently stumbled on an article about Problem-Based Learning I wanted to share with staff at a later date. I clipped it and placed it in my Inbasket notebook for later action. Evernote is an easy and functional way to collect web information and organize it.
  • Use Evernote to share administrative notes or project notes. I must confess that I haven't fully utilized this capability yet, but I can see occasions when I might need to allow another administrator access to my working notes on a project. Or, I might need to collaboratively work on a project and with Evernote, I can a project notebook with whomever I desire. Evernote’s simple collaboration features make sharing notes easy.


Evernote’s Desktop App Interface

I've found Evernote to be one of the most useful day-to-day applications in my job as a school administrator. For me, its simplicity, its organizational features, and its accessibility on multiple devices make it indispensable. I can create notes on my work desktop, and through the magic of synchronization, it appears on my iPad, my Android  phone, and on my laptop at home. It is a must-have application for administrators. To create an Evernote account and download its desktop software, check here. For those teachers and technologists that want to engage administrators in using technology applications, show them how to use Evernote. What are some other ways to use Evernote as educators? Please share.


  1. It's a shame given how useful Evernote is (I use it daily) that my school district blocks the service and won't unblock it despite it's usefulness. Great post though, maybe I can use it to help convince my district to finally lift the Evernote embargo!

  2. Those are the battles we all fight within school districts. Too often fear weighs more heavily than functionality or benefit. Schools should know better.

  3. Good info. As a fellow administrator striving to go paperless with Evernote, I've stumbled across this old blog post. Have posted other info regarding your use of Evernote in the last year?

    1. I haven't yet. I have a presentation and info for a blog post coming up after the first of the year. It is a fantastic app. Thanks for reading.