Guest Post: 5 Effective Tips to Guide High School Students in Time Management

Guest Post: April Boey

In order to achieve success in any task, it is vital to learn proper time management. High school life is power-packed with varied activities that call for a lot of involvement on the part of the student. Given this, if the student is unable to properly handle time, he might end up wasting his time in activities that add negligible value to his entire life and career. Here are 5 effective time management tips that would help high school students to manage their time by striking an appropriate balance between studies and other activities. With each of the tip comes a free online tool to make the implementation super easy for you.

Keep a to-do-list ready

When students are in high school, most of them do not have a plan about how they would spend each day. This absence of planning leads to a lot of confusion and ultimately considerable amount of time is wasted in deciding what to do and when to do it. If a student has a to-do-list ready he can enhance his productivity through proper allocation of time to the different tasks that he needs to do. It is advisable to take up comparatively difficult tasks in the morning because the mind is fresh at that time.

The best online to-do list that I have tried so far is Google tasks as I like its simplicity and ability to sync across my devices so long as I’m logged in to Gmail.

Carry work with you

In case there is an assignment due or you have an upcoming test, it would be great to carry your work with you wherever you are going. This will ensure that you can utilize the lunch time or any other free time for studying. You may even complete a bit of study as you wait for transportation. Although it is hard to avoid social media, try to concentrate on your work at your free time rather than checking Twitter and Facebook every now and then.  If you utilize your minutes wisely, you will get more time for relaxation or doing some other activity that you enjoy.

With Dropbox you do not have to worry about forgetting your physical notes. Besides being a good tool for backing up your documents, Dropbox is also very helpful for sharing files between members in a project work.

Be sure of your priorities

A majority of high school students are unaware of their priorities and hence they indulge in doing things that could easily have been completed afterwards. If a student does not have proper knowledge of priorities, he might ignore the things that require urgent attention and concentrate more on things that do not have so much of urgency. Being sure of the priorities enables a student to lead a less stressful life and carry out all tasks effectively.

Rescue Time is a tool for finding out how you have been spending your time online. If you say studies are your priority, the report from Rescue Time may offer a reality check for you. Statistics don’t lie, find out your real priorities.

Avoid procrastination

It is an age old advice, but it would not be out-of-place to repeat it here. Students should never get into the bad habit of putting things off for a later period of time. Procrastination in fact hampers the schedule to a great extent and ultimately the student will not get adequate time to carry our required tasks. Therefore, the best thing is to categorize the work into convenient segments across a number of days. Abiding by this schedule will make you more organized and leave time for relaxation.

Check out Focal Filter where you can block out distracting websites and avoid procrastination with sites such as Facebook.

Escape from getting sidetracked

If at any point of time you feel that you are getting indulged in insignificant things, immediately stop, and get back to your priorities as per the to-do list. You might procrastinate because of confusion regarding a school project and get involved in other ‘petty’ activities. If that is the issue, take the help of your teacher to solve the problem and move ahead.

During revision, the best way to stay focused is to use a timer, best way, a countdown timer. Trust me, the urgency of the clock ticking will intensify your concentration. Check out E.gg Timer

Implementation of the right time management techniques will definitely help you manage the highly demanding high school life. So, harness time and win every battle through a healthy balance among work, school, relaxation and social life.

 

About the Author

Having been a beneficiary, April believes that education has the ability to transform one’s life. She manages a blog for peer-to-peer learning at http://digitalsenior.sg/ where everyone shares their university experience in Singapore.

 

 

 

Infographic: The Best Educational Apps for Elementary and Secondary Students

What educational apps are on your tablet? How did you decide which ones were the best?

 

Source: http://elearninginfographics.com/best-apps-elementary-secondary-school-students-infographic/

Guest Post: Using Smartphones in Classrooms – the Emerging Trend

If you are a teacher and if you are a regular smartphone user, chances are that you have come across a plethora of education websites and apps. You may not, however, have realized that many of these can be feasibly used inside the classroom to improve learning. Most of your students (unless you are a primary school teacher) must also have access to smartphones and tablets and know their way around the internet and the app world. You may be the type with a zero tolerance policy when you see a phone out during class, but how do you know that the student is necessarily communicating with friends, and not trying to Google a word or phrase you just uttered, and which he or she doesn’t understand? Maybe the student is even brushing up on the topic of the lesson. How about trying to integrate all of this and create a more enriching teaching experience?

Step 1: Use Smartphone Apps

There are countless smartphone or tablet apps that you can use to supplement your teaching and add to your reference material database for the benefit of your students. For example, a language app called Courses123 allows the user to learn five new languages. It offers vocabulary training, definitions, pronunciation and usage guides. Wolfram Alpha, the big brother of learning apps, works like a search engine. Additionally, it answers factual queries in a unique way. It uses curated database of knowledge websites or pages to directly calculate and display the answer. So it is also an answer engine. School Fuel Apps connects teachers and students and acts as a learning platform, in the classroom and on the move. If you are a science teacher, you can recommend apps such as Science Glossary, Atomium and Skeptical Science to your students. Science Glossary is an extensive science dictionary app that provides definitions, short biographies and education modules. The Atomium periodic table app provides information about every element, while Skeptical Science addresses climate change.

Step 2: Access Online Resources

Websites, online tools and other such resources could be of huge help to both students and teachers. HippoCampus, for example, is a knowledge rich website where you can find instructional videos that are arranged by subject. The Jefferson Lab website contains knowledge resources and content on high school science. It is divided into a student zone and teacher resources, and also offers games and puzzles. Discovery Education gives you the best links to other educational sites, and lets you create your own classroom clip art and word puzzles. There is also a huge number of education blogs that you can find. E-pals lets you arrange safe online interaction and communication between your students and other students around the world. English as a Foreign Language (EFL) blogs include Kalinago English, EFL 2.0, TEFLtastic with Alex Case, Jamie Keddie.com and so on.

Step 3: Use Cloud Storage and Sharing

Cloud storage has given a facelift to teaching methods. For example, Dropbox and Sugarsync are resources that allow you to back up files and sync them across connected devices. You get to carry around all your teaching material with you, via these applications. With such effective utilization of cloud storage, you don’t need to worry about losing your data even when you lose a device. You can also share saved data and resources in the classroom, or with your students who have accounts in, say, Dropbox.

This is only the tip of the iceberg. There are many more things you can do with smartphones in the classroom. If every other kind of technology is being allowed for teaching, why not smartphones or handheld devices? And with a more enjoyable classroom experience, there will be fewer chances of students being easily distracted.

Author’s Bio: Lynda Scott is an educationist, social media evangelist, and an ESL English specialist. She writes primarily on education and technology related topics.

Guest Post: 5 Popular Cloud Applications Used in Schools

Guest Post by: Lim Chuwei

The widespread use of cloud applications is not limited to some business enterprises. But, cloud applications are adding an element of surprise for schools looking out to enhance quality in academics. Cloud applications provide a good synergy between classroom teachers and students.

These apps help to extend boundaries of education outside school to home and playground.  Many schools already boast of cloud enabled classrooms and students equipped with gadgets such as laptops, iPads, Smartphones etc.

Installing cloud infrastructure without choosing the right set of cloud tools doesn’t provide full benefits of cloud in education. With right applications on board, compatible to school’s storage infrastructure, teachers and students can effectively utilize all available resources.

Benefits of Cloud Applications Used In School

Cloud Applications allow content sharing, ubiquitous access, extend storage space to replace text books and large maps, content security, personal check in the performance of students and to encourage participation by considering individual viewpoints. Wide variety of already available tools compatible with multiple devices makes it easy to add cloud applications in schools. Centralized storage of data provide more security and anywhere access to users.

Following are the top 5 cloud applications used in schools worldwide that fulfill demands from every student:

1. Google Apps for Education

Google’s Cloud apps offer email, calendar, on-web storage and communications services to teachers as well as students via Gmail, Google Drive (in past Google docs), and Google groups. Its popularity can be measured from the fact that more than 10 million students use Google apps in their classrooms. The app is freely available without any hidden cost. Google apps are specifically designed for k-12 schools preparing them for 21st

2. Dropbox

Dropbox enables users to access data from anywhere. This is a web-based file synching app offering free 2 GB of file storage service for new users. The app automatically adds updated content in other personal devices having installed Dropbox in them. It also provides online access to data on the web storage at reasonable rates. Dropbox provides security to content by making it private and lets you share information with listed students or faculty members.


3. Edmodo

Edmodo app is considered as the future of virtual learning environments in schools. It has a network of over 31 million teachers and students connected in online classrooms. The app helps to discover new resources and collaborate on assignments. Edmodo provides separate passwords for different courses to an individual. Similar to Facebook, it includes a profile picture and a stream of updates in the user account.

4. Moodle

Moodle has a repository containing different types of quizzes, web links and glossaries for helping teachers as well as students. Its GUI lacks in interactive features as compared to Edmodo. But, Moodle contains RSS feeds, good tools to check grades and different forums to discuss a topic of interest. Moodle provides a facility to place every important document in a single file. Privacy is pretty secure under this open-source web application on the Internet.

5. Evernote

Evernote app enables students to take digital notes quickly using any computing device. One doesn’t need a slip of paper to note down something important using a pen. This is the best app designed for archiving purposes in cloud. Every note can be attached with pictures, tags and voice memos for later search. Evernote’s ability to scan text within images distinguishes the app from others available in cloud. Evernote also offers cloud storage facility to its users.

 

Author Bio

Lim Chuwei is a Teacher in Singapore at ChampionTutor and highly advocates the use of cloud based application for teaching and learning.

iPad as the Teacher’s Pet: An Infographic

This infographic was created by @TonyVincent.  It is the most thorough, most informative, and most helpful iPad app infographic for education that I have seen.   This infographic is more than just a .jpg or .png file; it was uploaded to Scribd, so that the included links to the apps or other websites would work.

On Tony’s blog entry for this infographic he also posted links to download a 6-page version to print or a very large 24-page version to piece together to make a poster.