Get Organized as a Learning Coach with Notes

By utilizing the Notes app, you can maximize your organization while documenting your impact as a coach. For the past few years, I have worked on creating a simple system to organize my notes, evidence of work, and important information. I tend to work from my iPad so that I do not appear to be an evaluator when I am in classrooms. Utilizing the built in Notes app has been my favorite resource for organizing my day to day as a coach.

Set Up Notes for Coaching

Below is an image of how I set up my basic folders. I divide my main folders into my areas of responsibility. Even though my main areas of support include coaching as a district, coaching on campuses, coaching people and teams yours may look different and benefit from titles you choose.

Screenshot image of Notes app.

Within those overarching folders, I set up a few notes ahead of time if I am aware of campus/staff names and for district goals. If not, I take the time to work on my folders and notes during back to school. Feel free to peek into my folders and notes below.

Coaching as a District

I’m starting here because It is imperative that your coaching practices and time are utilized in a manner that supports district initiatives and goals. Within my district folder, I include a note to include that school year’s priorities, another to have District Improvement Plan information - I typically only include the goals that I specifically have the opportunity to impact and those that explicitly include coaches.  And a note with a screenshot of my evaluation rubric for easy reference throughout the school year.

Screenshot of district folder.

Coaching Campuses 

As with a district, campus alignment towards goals with coaches is also very important.  I have at least one note per campus I am supporting with an overview of the campus vision, priorities, goals, and coaching plan.

 

Screenshot of note folder

Coaching Teams/People

Depending on the amount of the people I support determines the way I will set this up, but traditionally I make one note per specific team/teacher. I utilize team notes for planning, collaborative team time/professional learning community discussions, and more. The individual teacher notes is where I add notes from visiting classrooms. I take images of teachers working with learners and great classroom management or lesson ideas I may see around the room. I add screenshots of feedback emails or ideas they share with me. I might also draw/sketch an idea or link a resource I saw utilized as well. I add the date and time and always write above what was previously there to avoid having to scroll to the bottom each time.

Screenshot of notes folder

Extra Benefits of Using Notes

Workflow

  • Most recently edited notes automatically pop up to the top. This visual allows you to quickly notice which teachers you have not interacted with recently.
  • Your Notes app will act as a portfolio of work for the school year, you can utilize it as a resource to share with your supervisor as part of your evaluation.
  • Use Emojis in titles to help you find specific people and places faster.

Tech Features

Visit the Notes Apple Support Page for instructional tutorials for the following:

  • Collaborative Notes
  • Saving across devices
  • Tagging notes
  • Using the search bar to find specific notes quickly

More ideas

  • Use Speech-to-Text to dictate notes on the move
  • House a variety of resources (links, images, drawings, etc)
  • Use formatting to draw attention to different areas of text

How do you utilize Notes as an App? Add your notes tips in the comments!

1 reply

July 12, 2024

This is a fantastic way to get organized using Notes. I love that it syncs across my devices. Using emojis in the titles is a great way to identify notes quickly. Thanks for sharing!

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