Monday, October 5, 2009

Moving to Google Calendar

One of my life goals/school goals this school year is to migrate to Google Calendar. I'm hoping to use this blog to capture my steps and reflections in this huge process. In order to understand this change, here's a little history.

Since 2000, I've been a Palm Pilot girl. This was my link to home (paper calendar on the fridge with my/husband/son's schedules) and school (plan book). I had three mediums to sync, but I always knew I could look at my Palm and know exactly what I was supposed to do, when it was to happen and where.

During school hours, I have three technology schedules: Computer Lab, Laptop and Technology Support schedules. The first schedule is for teachers to use when they want to book time in the lab. The second is for reserving our cart of laptops for use in the classroom. The last is for teachers to schedule time to meet with me for planning/learning/co-teaching. I'd create these three schedules using MS Front Page at the beginning of the year and it was quite a project. Image creating a series of web pages, one page for each week of the school year, plus and index page. That's 41 web pages for year schedule, multiplied by 3 schedules. Teachers were only able to access these schedules from school since I "hosted" these pages on our server. Crazy, I know...but it was the procedure.

Then came the element of change....what I'm hoping will be my end-all-be-all. I learned about many of the Google Tools while completing my ed tech masters course over the last two years. When I saw how you can allow others to see and edit your calendar, how you can overlay multiple calendars, how you can access these calendars from any web browser...the light bulb went off, bells began to ring, I knew I was on to something. This would be perfect for my teachers to access for our schedules.

Fast forward to 2009...I know my Palm Pilot is going to be obsolete (if not already) since Palm is not making a PDA that is not also a phone. I'm getting tired of the routine of cross checking my plan book to PDA and then cross checking my PDA with the paper calendar on my fridge. Google calendar will cover it all.

As a creature of habit, this process is scaring me a little. I am determined to streamline, to accept change and to help others see the benefits. Feedback is always welcome!

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