1. Apps for documents
Reading articles sent by colleagues, annotating documents, working with excel files, bookmarking resource sites and archiving eMail are all part of an administrator’s day. And when administrators work as part of larger district teams and task forces, they need a way to share their work.
There are many apps, available for tablets, that can help organize files and allow for note-taking and distribution:
- Instapaper (Android and Apple): Provides a mobile-optimized Text view that makes reading internet content a clean and uncluttered experience. Saves most web pages as text only and stores up to 500 articles on your iPhone or iPad, and stores unlimited articles on the Instapaper website. Read offline, and send to Instapaper from 150 other iPhone and iPad apps.
- CloudOn (Android and Apple): Makes Microsoft Office (Word, Excel and PowerPoint) docs more accessible and useful by letting you edit documents, spreadsheets and presentations from anywhere with complete functionality.
- Pocket Cloud (Android and Apple): A secure and fast way to remotely connect to your Mac or Windows desktop with your iPad, iPhone, or iPod touch. Access your files, pictures, and applications like Outlook, Word, Photoshop, games or any other program.
- GoodReader (Apple): A super-robust PDF reader for iPad. Besides reading, you can also sync your files with remote servers, such as Dropbox, SkyDrive, SugarSync and any WebDAV, AFP, SMB, FTP or SFTP server.
- iAnnotate PDF (Android and Apple): Use iAnnotate to read, mark up, and share PDF, DOC, PPT and image files.
- Evernote (Android and Apple): Evernote lets you take notes, capture photos, create to-do lists, record voice reminders–and makes these notes completely searchable, whether you are at home, at work, or on the go.
2. The Cloud
Many educators have used products like Apple’s iCloud and Google Docs—both free applications—to store documents in the cloud, which can then be safely accessed anywhere from any device. Documents hosted in the cloud are accessible by anyone given access to that document, which boosts collaborate working efforts.
Dropbox is a free service that lets you bring your photos, docs and videos anywhere and share them easily. Put your stuff in Dropbox and get to it from your computers, phones, or tablets. Edit docs, automatically add photos, and show off videos from anywhere. Share photos with friends, or work with your team like you’re using a single computer. Everything’s automatically private, so you control who sees what. Dropbox also secures your files with 256-bit AES encryption and two-step verification.
edWeb.net is a free professional social and learning network that provides an intuitive Web 2.0 platform that includes webinars, blogs, discussions, file-sharing, shared calendars, wikis, live chat, messaging, polling, and shared links. Administrators can share best practices, information on what’s working, and support each other across schools, districts, states, the country, and even around the world. Forums cover a variety of topics and include everything from the characteristics of a 21st-century school leader to game-based learning. A full list of communities can be found here. All communities have free webinars and all webinar attendees will earn CE certificates. A webinar calendar can be found here. To watch the webinars or participate in communities, visitors must register, but registration is free and edWeb.net does not spam mail.
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