Although the Confer app now costs $14.99 (I paid $10.00 when I bought it last year) it is worth every penny! The Confer app enables you to import your class list multiple times so you can make a section for each subject area where you take notes on students (i.e. reading workshop, writing workshop, math, behavior, etc.). You can take notes on individual students using the template of "Tag, Strength, Teaching Point, and Next Step" or you can take general notes without a template. It also lets you view your students by name, date, reading level, tag, strength, teaching point, or next step. This allows you to easily see who you haven't conferred with in awhile, help plan instruction based on similar needs, and form small groups based on common next steps.
When I used to use a paper and pen system, I always had difficulty finding an efficient way to take notes on my small groups because I found myself writing the same teaching point and information four different times (once for each student in the small group). This is a non-issue now with the Confer app because you can check off the box in front of the four students you are meeting with in a small group and when you hit "add note" in the top right corner of the screen, it brings you to a small group page. This small group page has the same template used for individual conferences, but this time all the notes you type in automatically goes into each individual students section so you only type it once! This is such a timesaver and makes my notetaking more efficient and effective.
The confer app also lets you email the data to yourself or to another colleague which makes sharing data with others much easier. You can also upload your data now to a gmail account so you can make a spreadsheet of your notes too. I absolutely love using the Confer app and am very grateful to David Lowe who developed it! If you haven't checked out this app yet, I highly recommend watching the YouTube videos or the tutorials and description of the app in the App Store.
Happy Conferring! :)