Get Organized and Stay Focused!
Does your child, or the students you work with, ever find their attention wandering from their studies or realize too late they’ve missed a due date? Students have so much on their plates today- so much to keep track of and remember; thankfully, there are a plethora of apps available to help keep them on target. Today we will take a look at several apps they might find useful!
Photo via www.mystudylife.com
MyStudyLife is a free, cross-platform app that syncs across devices to help students create schedules and timetables, create task lists and set reminders. It is customizable and designed to keep you on track. See mystudylife.com/ for more details.
Evernote is an organizer that keeps schedules, notes, and to-do lists, sets flags and reminders, and coordinates with Google calendar and other apps. Students can add images, audio, pdf's, screenshots, etc. to keep all their tasks organized. Monthly plans range from free up to $14.99; each plan includes more capabilities. See evernote.com/ for more details.
myHomework is a free, cross-platform organizer that helps track assignments, tests and projects, sends due date reminders, and helps students stay on top of it all. The $4.99/year Premium version is ad-free and includes calendar access and much more; see myhomeworkapp.com/ for more details.
Todoist is an app that syncs across devices and allows users to set tasks and recurring due dates, create organized sections and sub-tasks, and prioritize and highlight the day's most important tasks. Users can set reminders and alerts, coordinate with others, delegate tasks, and connect the app to email, calendar and files to centralize work in one place. Users can also set goals and see visual progress charts, activity history and completed task archives. Plans range from free to $6 per month. See todoist.com/features for more details.
InClass is a free, comprehensive planning and organizational app that allows students to add class times, teachers, homework, and due dates to their calendars. Users can attach recorded content, files and notes to each reminder, set alarms and set priority levels for assignments. For $.99 ads can be removed. Learning Works for Kids at https://learningworksforkids.com/apps/inclass/ gives more details.
Photo via Focus Keeper
Apps to keep you focused
Focus Keeper is a time management tool that uses a timer and specified break times to help students stay focused and on task while working. Students manage their tasks, customize focus sessions, track productivity and share progress for a minimal yearly fee. See apps.apple.com/us/app/focus-keeper-time-management/id867374917#?platform=iphone for more info!
30/30 is a focus timer for Apple devices that allows 30 minutes on and 30 minutes off so students can customize tasks to give their brains a chance to switch gears frequently. This allows different parts of the brain to work and rest alternately, creating a more productive work time. This app is good for students who have a lot to do and need to maximize their time. See 3030.binaryhammer.com/ for more details.
Forest is an app for both iPhone and Android that helps students to put down their phones and do their work. While the app is on, cute trees and forests begin to grow; if the app is exited early, the trees will die! An excellent bonus: Forest collaborates with Trees for the Future, an organization that plants trees around the world. When users spend their “coins” in the app, Forest donates so that real trees are planted. Go to forestapp.cc/ for more details.
Simple reminder apps
Finish is a free, simple to-do and reminder app for Apple devices that helps students to organize and complete their tasks and review finished lists. See apps.apple.com/us/app/finish/id965966747 for more information.
Plan It Do It Check It Off is a customizable photo to-do list that is excellent for students who need visual supports. It is compatible with Apple devices and costs $4.99; see igetitapps.com/app/plan-it-do-it-check-it-off/ for details.
Carrot is a funny, motivating to-do list app with reminders and rewards. This app is compatible with iPhone and iPod Touch and costs $2.99. Beware Carrot's mood swings if you fail to check off your to-do's! To see more, go to apps.apple.com/us/app/carrot-to-do-talking-task-list/id591840203
Photo via Finish App
Visual organization and brainstorming apps
Idea Sketch is a free, Apple-compatible app that allows students to draw a mind-map, flowchart, or diagram and convert it to outline or text as well as copy text from other apps. Creations can be saved and shared. This app is designed to be intuitive and user-friendly See edshelf.com/tool/idea-sketch/ for more info.
MindNode is a visual planning and organizing app that allows students to brainstorm and organize thoughts into mind-maps, outlines, flowcharts, etc. Visual tags and stickers can be added for more context. Students can use Focus Mode to zero in on a particular area of a project and can keep track of their progress. See mindnode.com/features for more details.
Popplet is a visual brainstorming app that helps students organize their thinking and collaborate on projects. Students can add images, videos and drawings. There are free and paid subscriptions, and the app works on most devices. See popplet.com/ for more info!
Via Mind Node
Study aid apps
Speechify is an excellent tool for students with ADD/ADHD, dyslexia, vision challenges, or just for students who are auditory learners. It can read aloud any text you want to read: books, documents, articles, PDF's, etc. You can scan physical book pages with your device camera or import internet articles straight from your browser. Users can adjust the speed of reading, the voice that reads, and the language. Speechify also highlights the text as it reads it aloud, making it possible to follow along visually if desired. This app integrates with iCloud, Google Drive, Dropbox and more. Users can sync their audiobooks across devices on both Mac and Web; it even saves your place and picks up where you left off. See speechify.com/ for more details.
Grammarly is a free, online writing tool that checks your spelling, grammar, and punctuation, and it gives suggestions for more concise phrasing. Add it to Google Chrome and you can use it with email, documents, social media, and across different apps and sites. Upgrade to Premium, and the program gives suggestions to help improve your tone and make sure you are communicating clearly, checks for plagiarism, checks for level of formality, and gives more advanced suggestions. See grammarly.com/ for more information.
Quizlet allows students to create their own customized flashcards for study or choose from millions created by other users. This app is great for memorization of facts, vocabulary, dates, formulas, etc. Practice through timed matching games or test yourself with practice problems to get ready to ace your next test. Quizlet is free but does have in-app purchases and can be used on PC or mobile devices. See the App Store or Google Play Store or go to https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/p/quizlet/9plhct3922nq#activetab=pivot:overviewtab.
No matter what kind of devices students use, there are apps that can help them get organized and make the most of their time. High school is the best time for students to take advantage of these tools and practice using them, before they move on to college.
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This blog was written Janice Royal, MA. She is the Founder and CEO of Royal College Consulting.
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