The ABC of ELT

Using Evernote for Professional development

Recently on #ELTchat a blog challenge was set on how you use bookmarking programs so I thought I’d respond on how I use Evernote. Upon completing my record I realised that actually I use Evernote mainly as a note book and not for bookmarking. In spite of this I hope you will enjoy the read anyway.

I have been using Evernote for the last few months since I got an HP Touchpad. Having tried a few different online note systems and going back to good old paper note taking I was sceptical as to whether I would stick to it. However, since starting to use it I have almost completely stopped using paper note systems.

Here are some of the reasons why:

  1. It is easy to use
  2. You can copy and paste text in.
  3. You can store picture and audio along with notes
  4. It syncs between all your devices.
    1. As such I have it on my Touchpad, phone and computer
  5. You can use it offline as well as online.

So how do I use it?

To keep a record of my instant reflections in between classes.
Having my touchpad on the desk means I can quickly type a what worked, what didn’t, what i’d do differently etc.
However I have also used the camera on my phone to take pictures of my board work so I can compare how I worked on various tasks.

A to do list:
If I realise there is something I need to do then I can add it to my handy to do list or I can even make a separate notepad for the idea so I can then write more details about that one.

It is a great resource to start typing up a blog idea, especially considering the input issues of the Touchpad [none capitalising letter, strange auto spelling, etc] which can then be edited later on.

Taking notes about books.
I do a lot of professional development reading on my touchpad via ebooks or blogs and having evernote running in the back ground means I can then quickly put down a note on what I have just read.

For Language learning

You can read more about how I use Evernote for language learning here.

Features I haven’t tested out yet.
I haven’t tried doing a collaborative notebook, partially due to not knowing anyone who would want to collaborate with, not having an obvious topic to collaborate on or even knowing anyone else who uses Evernote. However I hope to try it out soon.
There are also various hardware options that work with Evernote, such as a scanner that instantly uploads, a pen that records your writing as you write normally (very expensive) and even a printer scanner.

Features I wish it had.
The biggest feature that is lacking [or at least I haven’t found yet] is a way to instantly upload information or data to a blog. For example I would love to be able to use the sound recording feature to make a record of the new vocab that is present in each lesson and instantly uploaded it to a website for students as is possible with other options like soundcloud or audioboo. However, as of yet I have to go into the system on my computer and then transfer the file across the different systems.
[Note there is, however, a system to share to facebook or Twitter which may be more useful than a blog. Unfortunately I share most of my information to students via blogs.]

Of course another teacher beat me to it and actually uses Evernote in a few different ways that I am considering now trying out myself. 



About Chris Wilson

I'm an English Language teacher based in Krakow, Poland. I enjoy writing, using technology and playing the Ukulele.

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