The phone that transformed the way I work
I used to be very old-school. I used to own phones that could only make calls and send messages. I used to think that smartphones were just toys. That was until January 2017, when I got a new phone - a smartphone, which has completely transformed the way I work. Please give it up for my current phone - BlackBerry PRIV!
What has changed?
Second, PRIV comes with Android OS, which means that all Google services are pre-installed and ready to use. As a result, I have started writing on Google Docs, which means everything I write on my phone is available on all my other devices and vice versa. Additionally, I collaborate with students on their writing on Google Docs. More often than not, I do it on my phone. I encourage my students to write a lot and they do. Collaborating with them on Google Docs saves me masses of time.
Third, PRIV and Google Docs allow me to create beautifully-formatted documents with portions of texts underlined, put in italics, highlighted, or changed in any way I need. Amazingly, all familiar shortcuts, like Ctrl+B or Ctrl+Z, work. Text formatting is of paramount importance for me because I create my own handouts for class on a regular basis. Let me give you an example of how I do it on my new phone. Say, I have a Ted talk in mind for my students. On the way to the office, I go to ted.com, copy the script, paste it into a Google Doc, type several listening-for-gist questions at the beginning, create a gap-fill exercise, type a word list, type several discussion questions at the end, and by the time I get to the office, I have a handout that is completely ready to be printed out.
Last but not least, PRIV is helping me to go paperless. I used to print out a ‘teacher’s copy’ of every handout I was using (a copy with all the answers, for my own use). I don’t any more. Most of ‘teacher’s copies’ are on my phone and I don’t have to carry around or store piles of paper.
I didn’t expect a smartphone to revolutionize the way I work. But there is no denying that it did.
I absolutely love my Blackberry PRIV. It allows me to do more and be more.
Photos by Irina Lutsenko