Evernote in the Classroom

You can plan, you can train and you can offer all the pro­fes­sional devel­op­ment you want around a cur­ric­u­lar ini­tia­tive, but you never know how well some­thing will truly work until you unleash it into the wild and have the fac­ulty and stu­dents put it through its paces.

After five years of plan­ning we launched our 1:1 Learn­ing Ini­tia­tive and with it Ever­note. There were a lot of dis­cus­sions and deci­sions that needed to hap­pen along the way, but one of the best deci­sions so far was to include an Ever­note pre­mium account on every fac­ulty and stu­dent laptop.

The adop­tion of Ever­note by teach­ers and stu­dents has been amaz­ing. We haven’t seen any­thing like this with any appli­ca­tion or ini­tia­tive to date.  Ever­note has become engrained into the daily lives of fac­ulty and stu­dents to the point that one would think we had been using it for years.  Not even Moo­dle has had this much of an imme­di­ate impact on the lives of our fac­ulty and stu­dents and all of this has hap­pened in only two months.

On a recent tour I gave of our 1:1 ini­tia­tive I had the good for­tune to be able to hear directly from fac­ulty and stu­dents on how the use of Ever­note in their classes is improv­ing teach­ing and learn­ing.  Some of those exam­ples are as follows:

Shar­ing note­books: Stu­dents are able to share their note­books with their teach­ers, giv­ing them the abil­ity to go into their note­books and com­ment on their work.  The teach­ers can com­ment (in dif­fer­ent color type) on what the stu­dents are doing inline with the notes they are tak­ing.  The teacher has access to all of their stu­dents’ notes in one place.  Gone are the days of col­lect­ing note­books or jour­nals; every­thing is made avail­able to them in one place… Ever­note.

Teach­ers are shar­ing their own note­books with their stu­dents. In our per­form­ing arts courses stu­dents are able to work on and add to the notes on pro­duc­tions. They have been able to expand on ideas about sound cues and stag­ing options, often going above and beyond what they would have been able to do in their rehearsal time.

Hand­writ­ten notes: For stu­dents that are still tak­ing notes with pen­cil and paper (the right tool for the right time) they are using the school copiers, scan­ning the pages to PFDs and send­ing them directly into Ever­note (via their Ever­note email addresses). The OCR fea­ture built into Ever­note is then scan­ning the document(s) and mak­ing it com­pletely search­able along with all of their other notes.

iSight Note: In sci­ence, stu­dents are using the iSight Note fea­ture to take a pic­ture of an exper­i­ment, open­ing that image file and anno­tat­ing it within Pre­view (pre­loaded Apple app — not needed for Acro­bat Pro­fes­sional). This is hap­pen­ing in 4th grade classes!

Blackboard/Whiteboard notes: Stu­dent are again using the iSight Note fea­ture, their iPhones, Touches or smart-phones to take pic­tures of the notes on the blackboard/whiteboard. The fact that they have all of these ways to cap­ture the infor­ma­tion that is impor­tant to them is empowering.

Bye-bye “trap­per keeper”: The amount of paper has been great reduced. A par­ent told me a story of how they did their weekly check-in with their child to see how things were going and to take a look at their notes, etc. The child opened her lap­top a launched Ever­note… “There it is dad.” was the response.

[NOTE: For those of you that didn’t grow up in the 80’s a trapper-keeper was a way to keep all of your lose note “orga­nized” in a three-ring binder]

I look for­ward to shar­ing more of these exam­ples of how this con­tinue to grow and develop over the year, and will con­tinue to post new infor­ma­tion for you to read.

Addi­tional Resources:


About William Stites

Currently the Director of Technology for Montclair Kimberley Academy, "Blogger in Chief" for edSocialMedia.com, husband and father to two crazy kids who make me smile everyday.
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  • Ryan B.

    Great post and I am excited to see a technology/software solu­tion being so effec­tively used! Nice work!

    • http://twitter.com/wstites William Stites

      Thanks… be sure to keep check­ing back as I plan on adding more infor­ma­tion about how we are using Ever­note through­out the year.

  • http://twitter.com/peterdbaron Peter Baron

    Great post at the right time for me.

    I’ve been strug­gling to under­stand ever­note and, for what­ever rea­son, I haven’t been able to fully grasp how to take advan­tage of and make it a worth­while tool for my day-to-day stuff. This review has opened my eyes to the possibilities.

    Thanks, Bill!

  • http://twitter.com/dgmorelli Duane Morelli

    Cur­rently out of the class­room, but very excited to read and hear about the use of Ever­note at your acad­emy. Just learn­ing Ever­note myself…

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  • http://twitter.com/MasterNoteApp Mas­ter­NoteApp

    Hi William — thought you might like one more way for Ever­note to sim­plify your life in the class­room — tem­plates on Ever­note:  http://www.masternoteapp.com

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