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10 Tools To Help Teachers Save Time

10 Tools To Help Teachers Save Time

Technology has rapidly advanced in recent years. After all, it is a huge part of our lives and can have huge educational benefits for both teachers and students. Check out 10 useful technology tools for teachers to help you to save time while enhancing your teaching.

1. BetterLesson

BetterLesson is a time-efficient way to help teachers make their lessons as useful as possible. BetterLesson has lesson plans for both English and Math provided by over 100 master teachers.

The lessons come with notes on how to use them and video summaries from the master teachers. This is one of the most useful technology tools available for teachers, with a simple layout and plenty of information and data.

BetterLesson

    2. GoConqr

    GoConqr is a personal learning environment that allows students and teachers to share learning resources. Teachers can create interesting and engaging lessons using the Mindmap, in addition to Note-taking, Flashcard, and Quiz making tools.

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    GoConqr also comes with a crowd-sourced library with over 2 million learning resources from around the globe. Nifty!

    GoConqr

      3. BloomBoard

      BloomBoard provides schools with feedback and training for their teachers. It can be very expensive providing teacher development and support, but this technology tool makes it much more simple, offering classroom observations and real-time chats with some of the most effective educators available.

      BloomBoard

        4. GradeBook Pro

        GradeBook Pro is one of the best apps available to help teachers to manage their classes. One of the main features of the app is teachers can use it to monitor student attendance.

        The most useful part of the app is that teachers can make individual notes on each student’s progression throughout the year – making it a great ally for your memory!

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        GradeBook Pro

          5. Edmodo

          Edmodo is already a very popular app used by teachers and students alike. It has recently expanded and now comes with even more benefits, including a new library of Common Core based content, so teachers can check if their students are hitting various standards!

          Edmodo

            6. FineTune

            FineTune is a useful tool to help teachers to evaluate their students’ writing assignments in a timely manner. Teachers can rate sample essays and give feedback, as well as see other ratings from experienced teachers.

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            Writing is a very important skill, and one of the best parts of this app is that the assignment doesn’t have to be for English class – it also includes non-traditional subjects, such as History and Science.

            FineTune

              7. TooNoisy

              Too Noisy is the ideal app for teachers who dislike a loud classroom. This app allows teachers to decide how loud the background noise can get in their classrooms, and if it gets any louder, an alarm will go off! This is a great way to keep a class quiet without requiring any extra work from the teacher.

              TooNoisy

                8. LightSail

                LightSail is a really useful tool for homework and assignments. It is an e-reader app with around 80,000 texts available.

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                Teachers can set challenges and assignments for their students on LightSail, but one of the best features of the app is that teachers can see who hasn’t done enough reading. They can even compare their class to others in the same school.

                LightSail

                  9. Remind101

                  Teachers can use Remind101 to send announcements and notices to both parents and students. While this in itself may not seem impressive, the real benefit of the free app is that teachers do not need to reveal their phone number to any parents or students, and vice versa.

                  This app is great to help teachers connect with their students without risking their privacy.

                  Remind

                    10. ThinkCERCA

                    ThinkCERCA is a useful tech tool that helps teachers to create reading assignments to further their students’ critical thinking skills. You can choose a topical subject and then assign different texts so that every student gets a text appropriate for their reading level. You can even mark their work and give them feedback using the tool!

                    ThinkCERCA

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                      Amy Johnson

                      Freelance writer, editor and social media manager.

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                      Last Updated on September 20, 2018

                      8 Ways to Train Your Brain to Learn Faster and Remember More

                      8 Ways to Train Your Brain to Learn Faster and Remember More

                      You go to the gym to train your muscles. You run outside or go for hikes to train your endurance. Or, maybe you do neither of those, but still wish you exercised more.

                      Well, here is how to train one of the most important parts of your body: your brain.

                      When you train your brain, you will:

                      • Avoid embarrassing situations. You remember his face, but what was his name?
                      • Be a faster learner in all sorts of different skills. No problem for you to pick up a new language or new management skill.
                      • Avoid diseases that hit as you get older. Alzheimer’s will not be affecting you.

                      So how to train your brain and improve your cognitive skills?

                      1. Work your memory

                      Twyla Tharp, a NYC-based renowned choreographer has come up with the following memory workout:

                      When she watches one of her performances, she tries to remember the first twelve to fourteen corrections she wants to discuss with her cast without writing them down.

                      If you think this is anything less than a feat, then think again. In her book The Creative Habit she says that most people cannot remember more than three.

                      The practice of both remembering events or things and then discussing them with others has actually been supported by brain fitness studies.

                      Memory activities that engage all levels of brain operation—receiving, remembering and thinking—help to improve the function of the brain.

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                      Now, you may not have dancers to correct, but you may be required to give feedback on a presentation, or your friends may ask you what interesting things you saw at the museum. These are great opportunities to practically train your brain by flexing your memory muscles.

                      What is the simplest way to help yourself remember what you see? Repetition.

                      For example, say you just met someone new:

                      “Hi, my name is George”

                      Don’t just respond with, “Nice to meet you”. Instead, say, “Nice to meet you George.”

                      Got it? Good.

                      2. Do something different repeatedly

                      By actually doing something new over and over again, your brain wires new pathways that help you do this new thing better and faster.

                      Think back to when you were three years old. You surely were strong enough to hold a knife and a fork just fine. Yet, when you were eating all by yourself, you were creating a mess.

                      It was not a matter of strength, you see. It was a matter of cultivating more and better neural pathways that would help you eat by yourself just like an adult does.

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                      And guess what? With enough repetition you made that happen!

                      But how does this apply to your life right now?

                      Say you are a procrastinator. The more you don’t procrastinate, the more you teach your brain not to wait for the last minute to make things happen.

                      Now, you might be thinking “Duh, if only not procrastinating could be that easy!”

                      Well, it can be. By doing something really small, that you wouldn’t normally do, but is in the direction of getting that task done, you will start creating those new precious neural pathways.

                      So if you have been postponing organizing your desk, just take one paper and put in its right place. Or, you can go even smaller. Look at one piece of paper and decide where to put it: Trash? Right cabinet? Another room? Give it to someone?

                      You don’t actually need to clean up that paper; you only need to decide what you need to do with it.

                      That’s how small you can start. And yet, those neural pathways are still being built. Gradually, you will transform yourself from a procrastinator to an in-the-moment action taker.

                      3. Learn something new

                      It might sound obvious, but the more you use your brain, the better its going to perform for you.

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                      For example, learning a new instrument improves your skill of translating something you see (sheet music) to something you actually do (playing the instrument).

                      Learning a new language exposes your brain to a different way of thinking, a different way of expressing yourself.

                      You can even literally take it a step further, and learn how to dance. Studies indicate that learning to dance helps seniors avoid Alzheimer’s. Not bad, huh?

                      4. Follow a brain training program

                      The Internet world can help you improve your brain function while lazily sitting on your couch. A clinically proven program like BrainHQ can help you improve your memory, or think faster, by just following their brain training exercises.

                      5. Work your body

                      You knew this one was coming didn’t you? Yes indeed, exercise does not just work your body; it also improves the fitness of your brain.

                      Even briefly exercising for 20 minutes facilitates information processing and memory functions. But it’s not just that–exercise actually helps your brain create those new neural connections faster. You will learn faster, your alertness level will increase, and you get all that by moving your body.

                      Now, if you are not already a regular exerciser, and already feel guilty that you are not helping your brain by exercising more, try a brain training exercise program like Exercise Bliss.

                      Remember, just like we discussed in #2, by training your brain to do something new repeatedly, you are actually changing yourself permanently.

                      6. Spend time with your loved ones

                      If you want optimal cognitive abilities, then you’ve got to have meaningful relationships in your life.  Talking with others and engaging with your loved ones helps you think more clearly, and it can also lift your mood.

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                      If you are an extrovert, this holds even more weight for you. At a class at Stanford University, I learned that extroverts actually use talking to other people as a way to understand and process their own thoughts.

                      I remember that the teacher told us that after a personality test said she was an extrovert, she was surprised. She had always thought of herself as an introvert. But then, she realized how much talking to others helped her frame her own thoughts, so she accepted her new-found status as an extrovert.

                      7. Avoid crossword puzzles

                      Many of us, when we think of brain fitness, think of crossword puzzles. And it’s true–crossword puzzles do improve our fluency, yet studies show they are not enough by themselves.

                      Are they fun? Yes. Do they sharpen your brain? Not really.

                      Of course, if you are doing this for fun, then by all means go ahead. If you are doing it for brain fitness, then you might want to choose another activity

                      8. Eat right – and make sure dark chocolate is included

                      Foods like fish, fruits, and vegetables help your brain perform optimally. Yet, you might not know that dark chocolate gives your brain a good boost as well.

                      When you eat chocolate, your brain produces dopamine. And dopamine helps you learn faster and remember better. Not to mention, chocolate contains flavonols, antioxidants, which also improve your brain functions.

                      So next time you have something difficult to do, make sure you grab a bite or two of dark chocolate!

                      The bottom line

                      Now that you know how to train your brain, it’s actually time to start doing.

                      Don’t just consume this content and then go on with your life as if nothing has changed. Put this knowledge into action and become smarter than ever!

                      Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

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