If it takes you more than a minute to find the file, you need a new organizational method. When I taught private piano lessons I didn’t care what the fingerings my students did, only that they do the SAME fingerings every time they played the piece. This is the same with organization – have a plan, stick to it and do it the same every time.
June 31, 2012 and iDisc will be gone, so I made the move. I placed all my “old” files on an external drive and rebuilt my cloud storage using a variety of services. I use google docs, but mainly for collaboration and the forms/spreadsheet feature. I also use the presentation app for embedding within my websites.
I was the poster child as an disorganization student
As a young student, I was the most disorganized student with paper. In the fifth grade I had two desks, one that was assigned to me and I used the “lost and found” for my overflow. Many times I had to do the homework twice, I lost my homework assignment on the way to school or in my locker.
The moment I became a digital learner, that all changed. I became the piano student using the same fingerings each time. Now my organization is the backbone of all I do. I am a folder queen, I have a method of labeling a file and before I start to create, I already know what folder it is going to be placed. Everyone has to have a system that works for them, not that works against them. Much like the piano student that creates their own fingerings to play the piece of music.
The school year encompasses two years, 2011-2012, so I never labeled anything 11-12. I always used the later year. So, the school year 2011-2012 was just 12. Even though Open House was in September 2011, I labeled it OpenHouse_12. I never use any spaces between files and the year is always at the end, If I want the file or folder to be on top of the list, I put a 1_ before the file name. Example: 1_OpenHouse_12. I have been doing this for years.
Evernote Computer app, Online access, iPad/iPhone app
Purpose: Notes and daily living, everything is in my evernote, I have purchased the premium account.
How I use it: All notes and agendas, copied emails, screenshots of important information.Reads pictures (can search word in a picture you take) voice notes. You can access off-line and will sync when you have internet access. Folders and tags, with a search. Comes with an email address, so you can email notes. You can also share files with others
Google Drive with Google Docs Online, Computer App
How I use it: Collaboration, data collection for spreadsheets, embed presentation.
Cloudon App for iPad App for iPad
Purpose: Access to Google Drive, Box.net, and DropBox files all in one place.
DropBox Computer app, Online access, iPad/iPhone app
How I use it: All my important documents, pages, spreadsheets, presentations.
Within Dropbox Some Apps:
iAnnotate PDF iPad App
Purpose: Marks up pdf’s on the iPad.
What it does: Marking up pdf’s. You MUST download files first from dropbox.
How I use it: I love the simplicity of marking up a pdf, much easier than converting it to word and using Google docs. Lots of choice in colors and types.
Bento Backup Computer app, Pad/iPhone app
Accepts: Excel spreadsheets
What it does: Database.
How I use it: I download the data from google docs to an excel spreadsheet and upload the spreadsheet to Bento. Instantly makes the database with all the proper headings. The app on the iPhone and iPad syncs over wifi (the protocols at school made this unusable, so I sync at home.)
1Password Backup Password program and manager
Purpose: Keeps all my passwords encribed.
How I use it: I have over 700 passwords, all different. There are add-ons for your all your browsers.
Planbook for iPad Lesson Plan book
Purpose: Lesson Plans, accepts weblinks and Word docs. Can add standards
How I use it: Lesson Plans
DROPitTOme Online (does not work on iPad)
Purpose: Students can drop files directly into my dropbox.com
How I use it: Students without emails can drop files. I did a test, the files dropped faster than the server at school. Anyone can drop a file directly into your dropbox (you need a dropbox account) It time stamps when the file was dropped and you receive an email that the file has been dropped. Password protected.
Additional Cloud Services as Backups
My hope is that this has inspired you to develop your “fingerings” plan for organization. I would love to hear from others their system and ways of organizing.