Day 5: nvALT and quick notes on students


One of the things I’m trying to do this year is to be better at taking notes about my students as class progresses that I can use to record a more complete picture of my students’ learning, as well as anecdotes to include in comments and future recommendations. Problem is, I’ve never had a good way to keep student feedback—I need something quick that I can add notes to in the moment, without a bunch of clicking a searching.

Enter nvALT, a free note taking app that is super fast, filled with keyboard shortcuts and syncs via dropbox with a number of other iOS based apps so that I can take notes on the iPad, iPhone or Mac and keep them all synced together.

nvALT makes entering a note on a student as simple as typing that student’s name in the search bar. If I’ve already got a note on the student, nvALT will show that note via autocompletion, and if there isn’t a note, pressing enter after I type the name will create one. Then I’ve got a few shortcuts in TextExpander to do things like adding a date-time stamp when I type dts, and I’ve got a speedy student note taking machine.


About John Burk

The ramblings of a physics teacher.
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