Note-taking is an essential part of the educational process in order for students to retain and fully process information. However, getting students to hand-write effective notes with a pencil and paper can be difficult. Get your class excited to take notes with the 5 Best Free Note-Taking Tools for Teachers.

How To Use The 5 Best Free Note-Taking Tools for Teachers

  1. Notes.io About Notes.io Notes.io is an astonishingly simple web-based application for taking notes as quickly and as efficiently as possible. Notes.io’s ease of use and ability to share information immediately make it highly beneficial for teachers in a hurry or students who are just getting used to classroom technology.How to Use Notes.ioTo use Notes.io, simply click on the link above and start typing! When you’re ready to share your notes click the “Short” icon in the right hand corner.  You will then be provided with a link to share via email, text, or a document. Notes.io also gives you the capability of sharing via Facebook, Twitter or FriendFeed.
  2. mySchoolNotebook About mySchoolNotebook mySchoolNotebook is a note-taking platform that allows you to work online or offline. It ensures that you are never without a way to create an engaging note-taking experience for your students. How to Use mySchoolNotebookTo get started using mySchoolNotebook, first click the link above to go to the website. Next, create a profile through a Facebook account or through an email address. Once you’ve completed your profile you will be directed to your homepage.To start taking notes, click “New Notebook.” Fill in the “Title” and “Teacher’s Name” boxes. Click the checkmark to save your work thus far. Now click the “Add a Topic” button, type in the name of your topic and click “Save.”To add content to your notes, click “Add a Lesson.” Type in the notes you would like to take and once you’re content with your work, click “Save and Close.” Once you’re done you are free to export your notes to PDF, print them, or share them!
  3. Scriblink About Scriblink Scriblink is an online note-taking program that functions like a digital whiteboard.  It allows user to share notes, drawings, or diagrams at any time. Scriblink’s ability to share free-hand sketches make it a valuable tool for any classroom full of creative students.How to Use ScriblinkScriblink’s use of Java makes it incredibly easy to use and incredibly simple to share. No signup is necessary. Simply click the link above to go the site and begin working on your whiteboard!  The tools at your disposal include: a free-form pen, a straight-line tool, a square creation tool, a circle creation tool, an eraser, a text tool, an “Upload” button, a color selection bar for your lines and your background, a slider that lets you vary the thickness of your lines, an “Undo” button, and a “Clear” button.Utilize all of these tools to create something worthy of sharing. Then save it, send it, or print it!
  4. Penzu About Penzu Penzu is an online personal journal. It was created in order to keep journal entries away from prying eyes and enables users to add photos and format their journal in other appealing ways. It’s perfect for students that want to keep notes to themselves or classroom journaling time.How to Use PenzuTo begin taking notes with Penzu, sign up by clicking the green “Create Your FREE Journal” button. Fill in the required information and click “Sign Up.”Next, you will be prompted to select an avatar for your account. Choose your favorite from the options available and click “Next.” You will now be taken to a page that allows you to share Penzu on Facebook or Twitter, either do this or simply click “Next.”Penzu will now take you to a page that lets you decide whether you’d like to turn on Looking Glass or not. Looking Glass is a setting that enables you to be emailed old journal entries for nostalgia’s sake. Make a decision regarding this setting and click “Next.”  You will be asked if you would like to be sent reminders to journal on Penzu, select and option from the dropdown menu and click “Next.” Now choose a font for your journal and click “Done.”Now click “Untitled Journal” and write away! As a free user you are allotted one journal, so make the most of it by adding pictures, comments, or changing the format of the text from the list of icons directly above your journal. Once you’re done, save your journal, then either lock it or send it to someone!
  5. Evernote About Evernote Evernote is one of the most sophisticated online note-taking tools out there. It allows users to take notes online and sync information to a phone or other device. Evernote even lets users take snapshots or record audio through a phone or tablet-based app, so it’s perfect for a classroom full of tech-savvy students.How to Use EvernoteBegin by clicking the link above to go to the Evernote site. Click the “Sign up” link in the top right corner of the screen. Fill in your information and click “Register.” Go to your email and find the message from Evernote, click “Confirm Registration” to confirm your account and complete the signup process.Go to your home page on the website and find the link in the middle of the screen that reads “New Note.” On the right side of your screen, Evernote will open an “Untitled” note sheet. Give the document a title and let your creative side go to work! You are free to add a table, a to-do list, attach a file, and change the font size or style. Evernote saves your notes automatically, so once you’re satisfied with the notes you’ve taken, you really don’t have to do much. However, if you’d like to share the notes with your class, a friend, or a colleague, click the “Share” link to the right of your screen to share your notes via Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Email, or a simple URL.

Free Educational Technology

Although it may be hard to believe, remember that all of these educational technology tools are free! They are unrivaled in their ability to get students excited about note-taking so incorporate them into your classroom as often as you’d like!