One of the troubles with attempting to be a self-driven learner is that organising everything is up to you. Being in control of how and when learning happens is great, but being told what to learn and when and being directed to the material simplifies so much!
So this is what I’m lamenting after my contact weeks when I have to learn on my own. The content I want to learn from is online across many sites, but I don’t like accessing bookmark lists and when I keep bookmarks on the toolbar permanently, it tends to fade into the background and I don’t pay much attention.
One solution, and the one I’ve opted for, is to install a bookmark extension that allows you to organise your bookmarks into a format that you’ll actually use.
I’ve gone for start.me, which is really useful and free, although as with most free things there is a premium option that most people won’t really need.
While I am learning, this is going to be my default start.me page. It’s also my homepage and new tab page, so I’m going to be seeing it a lot.
I’ve got the common websites that I don’t necessarily learn from; YouTube, LinkedIn and Reddit for example, but those are clearly not the main focus here.
My main focus on this homepage is learning, and I’ve got a few groups of hyperlinks that will make that a smoother experience.
- The first group is a bunch of links to each module on my university’s learning platform, as well as their digital library.
- The second group contains links with online courses to help me get up to speed. You might recognise the Data Science Math Skills and Calculus courses I posted about yesterday.
- The third group are imported bookmarks that I ahd been storing before. There’s some stuff I don’t need in this group, but I’m just keeping it there for now, it’s still keeping me on track for learning.
- The fourth group contains links to books stored on my hard drive. The direct links don’t work so I have to copy and paste them into the address bar. A little inconvenient, but less so than navigating file explorer all the time.
There are a couple other groups there, but none important for learning, you’re welcome to read them for yourselves if you’re curious enough.
This was actually a suggestion from my wife who is an organisation MASTER, and I only set it up yesterday. It just seems like a really good idea and I like having such easy access to the links that are most important to me. I also like being reminded of them each time I open a new tab.
Now, there are a TON of other features in start.me that I’m not using, to do lists and such, but this is fine for now. I’m surrounded by physical calendars and planners at home, so I don’t need them recorded digitally as well.
I’ll keep using this and see how good it is, just wanted to spread some awareness that if you’re learning and having a hard time keeping track of it all, making your own bookmark homepage could be a really efficient solution.