A few months ago I talked about exploring knowledge management for teachers. Essentially, how we personally capture our resources, lessons, and reflections. I have used a variety of methods over the years, none of them too effective. The last two methods (binders and then file folders for unit master copies, readings, etc.) were completely paper-based. I also have directories/folders on my hard drive labeled by class and unit that are filled with files I have found or created over the years. When I create a test or quiz, I usually add the year, but other then that, I have years of documents all together. I occasionally add some notes or reflections to a lesson for the following year, but often times I just try and remember. As you can imagine, I have had mixed success with this.
Teaching AP World History this year has complicated my limited organizational capacity. I have bought numerous resources, but the real overload has come from files I have downloaded from other teachers with web pages (thanks by the way). PowerPoints, worksheets, DBQs, etc. Hundreds of files. Actually, probably a couple thousand. Now what?
So here’s my question to all the teachers who read this blog, how do you organize your educational resources? From books to lesson plans to worksheets to digital files? Did you purchase a program, print everything out, or use a file cabinet? How do you keep track of lessons from year-to-year, noting what went well, what didn’t? If it is complicated or simple please explain by commenting (or e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org).
I am writing an article with one of my former Educational Technology professors about this and want some “real life” examples beyond myself and the teachers at my school. I will also summarize the results later.
Thanks and I appreciate your help!