Web Resources to Improve Your Performance


There are a variety of web resources that will assist you in becoming more productive. The obvious applications, such as Google & Office 365, are included in some of the other things. This productivity resource looks at some other resources that help one become more productive. We are focusing on: online calendar sharing, file conversion, and URL personalization. 

Three URL Shorteners

(URL = Uniform Resource Locator, or the web address)

URLs can often be quite long and difficult  to type or remember. When providing a URL for a site to a student, which would you choose to give them to type in? OR OR

There are a variety of sites that provide shortening services. Some simply create a shortened URL ( and others allow for personalization (TinyURL, Bitly). Some of the services even provide some statistical data about the sites you shorten (, Bitly).

Try out one or more of these URL Shortener resources.                                               TinyURL                        Bitly

 googleURLshortner   tinyURL     bitly


googlecalendar      Outlook Calendar        Apple Calendar

One of the best ways to become more efficient and productive is to use an online calendar. Calendars are shareable with colleagues, students and family.

There are a variety of calendars available to users:

  1. Google calendar- For a quick-start guide to Google calendar, click here.
  2. Microsoft Outlook calendar- Video tutorial for the calendar
  3. Office 365- Watch this video to learn more about the calendar in Office 365
  4. Apple Calendar- Video tutorial for the calendar

A few of the ways calendars are used by educators

  1. Create different calendars for different types of events and classes and be able to see them merge
  2. Post class assignments, quizzes and tests so students and parents can see when things are due
  3. Post department and school meetings
  4. Post school events like plays, concerts, sports
  5. Post lunch menus
  6. Create a school calendar with vacation days, parent teacher conferences
  7. Model the use of calendars for the students

zamzar  zamzarmenus

Free online conversion tool. To use Zamzar you:

  • upload a file to their web site
  • choose the conversion format deired,
  • enter your email adress, and
  • wait for the file to be converted and sent back to you 

Click on this link for a screenshot tutorial on Zamzar. Watch the video below for step-by-step instructions (direct link to the video). 

Check out additional resources for Productivity

Learning Objectives

After completing this Thing, the educator will:

  • Know how to use a variety of web resources to increase personal and professional productivity 

  • Understand how online resources can enhance your efficiency and organization

  • Make connections with technology standards and best practice

  • Transfer the learning to professional practice by implementing tasks to increase your productivity in and out of the classroom



21 Things Assignment:

1. Take one of your favorite sites (with a very long URL) and convert the URL to a shortened url using one of the resources provided. Share both the original and shortened URL in your Digital Portfolio with your instructor. Be sure to make sure the link is active and works when clicked.

2. Create and share a calendar for your classroom (e.g. with your students, colleagues, administrators). In your Digital Portfolio share a link or a screenshot and then describe the shared calendar and how you are going to use it. 

3. Using Zamzar, take any file of your choosing and convert it so that is usable by you or your students. For example, you could convert a Word document to Adobe Acrobat .pdf to preserve the file or .mp3 so they can listen to the text. Take a screenshot of your conversion and upload to your digital portfolio.Record your reflections in your digital portfolio about how this could influence your classroom instruction.

4. Take the very short survey giving feedback for this Thing. 


Addressing the ISTE Standards•T:

  1. Facilitate and Inspire Student Learning and Creativity a,b,c,d;
  2. Design and Develop Digital Age Learning Experiences and Assessments a,b,c;
  3. Model Digital Age Work and Learning a,b,c
  4. Promote and Model Digital Citizenship and Responsibility b


  1. Summarizing and Notetaking;
  2. Assigning Homework and Practice;
  3. Cues, Questions, and Advance Organizers