I don’t remember exactly when I signed up for Evernote, but I know it was several years ago. Probably even as far back as the beta in 2008. Regretfully, I haven’t really taken advantage of this amazing and powerful tool as much as I probably should have.

That’s all changing now. I recently read this post from Michael Hyatt on 12 ways he’s using Evernote that you might not have thought about. Michael calls Evernote his “digital brain” and I’m beginning to agree with him. I’m also following his setup for organizing my Evernote account which I’ll cover in another post soon.

If you are just getting started with Evernote, I suggest that you buy Brett Kelly’s remarkably practical e-book, Evernote Essentials, 4.0. It will save you HOURS of learning Evernote on your own.

After reading Michael’s post, I began thinking of clever ways that teachers could use Evernote in their classrooms and just throughout the course of the day as a professional educator. Any tool that we can use to simplify our teaching lives has to be a good thing.

I’m sharing with you now a few of the ideas I came up with to use Evernote throughout my day; a few of which I think are pretty creative.

  1. Digitize Your Lesson Plans. Depending upon where you teach, you may be asked for lesson plans at any point in time. If you like to write them out on paper (I recommend the Moleskine Evernote notebooks), then scan them into Evernote for handy reference at anytime you need them.
  2. Save important emails. A great tip is to forward any REALLY important emails to your Evernote email (yep, you get one of those with your account) and they’ll be filed in your account. Don’t you need to reclaim some of your inbox space?
  3. Capture Student Work Samples. From time to time, you may need to show a sample of student work, especially if your students are working on something awesome and you just want to show your principal the awesomeness. Take a quick picture with Evernote and boom! Your student’s work is now saved for posterity.
  4. Save Meeting Notes. True story – I started off my student teaching with a manila folder of documents. In that folder were PD meeting schedules, notes, and handouts. Sometime during the first few weeks of school, that folder grew legs and walked away. Had I saved all those documents in Evernote, I wouldn’t have been as upset as I was. Never again.
  5. Store PD Certificates. Someone once told me to start a certificate binder. That’s all well and good, but I want to ditch as much paper as I possibly can. However, I know how important it is to have some sort of record of trainings and events I attend as a teacher. So, I’m just going to save a copy of each certificate in my Evernote account. I’ll be able to access them any time I’m asked, or if I just want to show off.
  6. Save lesson plan ideas. As a teacher, you’re always looking for new ways to engage students and make lessons more interesting and relevant. Maybe you’re out somewhere and you get inspired. Get out your phone, type out your idea or take a picture with Evernote and you’re good to go.
  7. Save event flyers. Whether it’s a school, community, or professional event, we lose flyers all the time. Scan them into Evernote and tag appropriately.
  8. Maintain a checklist. Ever go to school and realize you’ve left something you needed for that day’s lesson at home? It happens all too often, so keep a checklist of what you need on a daily basis in Evernote.
  9. Save resources for PD sessions. If you deliver PD sessions for your school or at conferences, Evernote can help you keep resources and notes organized. Heck, you can even present your notes directly from Evernote (and it looks pretty good!).
  10. Remember awesome people you meet. Most of the fun of attending conferences and events is meeting other awesome teachers that are rocking it just like you. With Evernote Hello, you’ve got a great way to record their contact info and connect with others.

This is by no means an exhaustive list, but hopefully it will get you started with Evernote. Maybe you’ve got some ideas of your own that you’d like to share with the world.