Time-Saving Tricks & Hacks

Screen Shot 2015-05-11 at 8.03.51 PMIt’s May.

Which probably means that you’re busier than ever. The end of the school year seems to bring with it a ton of events, awards to be printed, and field trips to be planned and taken.

I find that I am on my computer more frequently, too, to make sure all of those things get done. So today, in hopes of saving you a bit of time, I wanted to share with you my favorite and most useful computer and phone tips and tricks… or hacks if you will.

Let’s start with keyboard shortcuts.

From Alice Keeler's Photo Credit: http://www.alicekeeler.com/teachertech/2013/09/05/keyboard-shortcuts/

From Alice Keeler’s Website // Photo Credit 

If you don’t already use these, please let me introduce you to a major time-saver.

Whether you’re working on a Mac or a PC, there are loads of keyboard shortcuts to help you out!

Once I teach these to my students, they are amazed at how much faster they can work without trying to highlight and stop and click every few seconds.

While this picture just shows you the options for a PC, simply swap the control key for the   “Command” key on a Mac and you’re in business.

There are plenty more shortcuts, too. These tend to be ones I use the most frequently.

Check out a few others on our SCN Pinterest board – “Tech Tips/Hacks

Another of my favorite time-savers is using the microphone feature on my iPhone.


A few weeks ago my dad and I were driving to school together (we both work in Boyne City and live in Petoskey) as I watched him painfully trying to text out of the corner of my eye. His ginormous fingers just aren’t made for a tiny iPhone keyboard screen. Our conversation went something like this…

Me: “Dad you know you can use the microphone icon to record your voice and it will text it for you, right?”

Dad: “No, you’ll have to show me sometime.”

Me: “Dad, just press the microphone icon next to the space bar and try it.”

Dad: (speaks into phone and is amazed at speech turned into text) “You just saved me years of my life.”

Me: “Consider that payback for when I didn’t sleep as a baby.”

Now, depending on your iPhone’s operating system (iOS), you may even have two options here. The first is that you can actually send a voice recording via text message. To do that, simply click on the microphone near the text box (Option 1 in the graphic) and start speaking.

The other option is to use Siri to record what you’ve said and turn your speech to text. I do this one more often than the first option (see Option 2 in the graphic). You’ll want to check that your text is correct – for example Boyne and boring sometimes get switched. One of the great things, though, is that the text that confused Siri will be underlined in blue to give you other close options to what you said. Plus, the more you use it, the better it gets at recognizing what you’re saying!

There’s a few more iPhone tricks on our Pinterest board, too!

What are your favorite time-saving tech tricks and tips? Share them on Twitter using the hashtag #SCNtechtip so we can all gain a few extra minutes!

Stay tuned for next week as I share a little bit about setting up a Pinterest account for your school and give you a few ideas on how to use it!

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