One of the biggest factors that causes students in middle and high school to struggle in school is lack of organization. No matter how smart and capable a student is, it’s very hard to get good grades if they are disorganized. They lose papers, forget assignments, or turn in projects with missing details.
But how much time have your child’s teachers spent teaching him or her how to organize themselves? Sure, lots of teachers require things like outlines and study guides, or folders in specific colors, but that doesn’t mean the approach they teach will work for your child. I spent years quickly writing my papers, then reverse-engineering the outlines because I just don’t plan my writing well by using an outline, but it was required.
As I got older, I developed a system that worked for me of making lists, using a planner, and scheduling my work. I used paper for a long time, then switched to Evernote, which I liked because it could sync between my computer and my phone. I kept trying other apps, but never found the perfect one.
A couple years ago, I discovered Google Keep. It’s everything I need, and I think it’s perfect for my students, too!
Here are some reasons to give it a try.
If you are logged into your Google account, you are logged in to Google Keep. No additional passwords, and no remembering to check the list because your reminders pop up in your browser or you can get push notifications sent to your phone.
I love the visual display, which looks like an array of Post-it notes. You can color code notes for home, school and work or for each of your classes. Add bullets or numbering to your list. Drag and drop notes or pin them to the top of the page to keep them front and center in your attention.
Checkboxes are the feature I use most in Google Keep. With one tap, it’s easy to change a list of steps into an organized checklist. Drag and drop items into the order you want to work on them. Copy and paste a list from a website or document, then click “add checkboxes” to turn it in to a list.
As with Google Drive, you can share a note in Keep with another Google user. This is great for parents who want to share a list of chores or a group working on a project.
Set a reminder to study for the test every day at 7 pm. On Sundays at 4, get reminded to pack your backpack. Put in a note to remind you when you are home to find a baby picture for the yearbook.
Set a reminder to check your grades 2 weeks before the end of the quarter. Then archive the note to get it out of sight until you need it. When you finish a project, archive or delete the note so it doesn’t clutter up your list.
All of these features make Google Keep easy to use and convenient. It’s a great choice for helping students get organized, and it’s freely available as part of a Google account, so why not try it?
Does your child need some extra help getting organized for school? Are they having trouble finishing projects, getting poor test grades? Maybe it’s time for a tutor. Contact me today for a free consultation.