Friday, September 14, 2012

Homeschool Planner 2012-2013

Moving right along doing paperwork and starting to settle down into our new homeschool year. It always involves the making of a new plan book. You can read all about my conversion from fun forms and fancy planning here. This is the third year I'm using the plain spiral format and I adore it more every year.

It all starts with a set of papers you want to collectively make up the plan book- typically I make them myself. There is one exception to that.
The cover is designed, printed on cardstock, embellishments are added and I laminated it before putting the holes in it.
I picked some of my favorite quotes and added them to the inside cover- nothing fancy. You'll also see here a modified version of our Weekly Routine. I'll share more details on this soon.

I found this simple calendar at a glance at Donna Young's site. I found this to be the most useful calendar format in my plan book. I'm not a fan of the little blocks to fill in...

This year I added the kids' Individualized Home Instruction Plans (IHIP) to the front of the planner. I color coded them fancily- see?

Each school aged child in the state of NY is required to have one of these and I thought it would be great to have them in my planner this year rather than have to refer to them on my laptop.

Now when I write out their quarterly reports, I can have everything in one place.
After each IHIP is the set of math goals from Math on the Level. I took last year's and modified them to reflect a new focus. I color code them to match the concept chart given to us by MOTL. Only the younger three have them, but they are in there right after the IHIP for each student.

The IHIPs tell the plan for each student for the current school year- we also inform the administrator on this document what type of year end assessment we will do to satisfy the requirement.

This is just an updated list of all the math resources we have on hand- games, manipulatives, books, etc.

Of course, the main attraction is the loose leaf paper- specifically I love the Staples brand 8.5x11 college ruled paper. Slick stuff and heavenly to write on.

One of the best investments I've ever made in our homeschool supplies is the ProClick Binder. I use it frequently to make customized spirals notebooks that can be clicked open if necessary. How can you go wrong there? I even use it to bind up my students' work at the end of a school year. It's much easier to store these flat books than a three ring binder. You can put holes in printed papers or just lined paper. There is no limit to what you can do with a ProClick!

I love using just a plain notebook page to plan and record for our homeschool. I know not everyone appreciates the power of the college ruled paper to unleash the boldness of your learning experiences. But the spiral never lets me down! The part that took the longest was preparing the instruction plans, math goals, and tweaking our Weekly Routine. I like to have the goals and IHIPs in the front of the planner to keep me on track- to consult as we have to make adjustments, etc. Using the format of a blank lined page is very inspiring- and extremely freeing!

When I'm tempted by other planners, I remember that I hate blank squares and that I will not make planning my idol! 

Planning is not the thing; Doing is the thing!

10 comments:

Sally said...

Best (read: most convicting!!) statement of this ENTIRE post?
"I will not make planning my idol!"

If you can't say, "Amen," you better say, "Ouch" ...... that whoo whee, there's a big OOOOOUCHHH! coming from this side of Virginia!
Great post, of course, but that one line knocked me right where I needed it!

Claire said...

Totally agreeing with Sally. I spent the whole summer planning. Now I must STEP AWAY FROM THE PLANNER! Then repeat a few times a day!

Eddie said...

Great planner!

I made my own too. Now of course I'm kicking myself because I didn't put in math goals or an IHIP. :)

Heather said...

Eddie consider yourself lucky you don't have to have an IHIP! ha

Heather

Heather said...

Sally and Claire,

There was a time when my planner had to be immaculate and I got to a point where I could not handle blank squares! ha

So, the blank page allows me to be creative and not be worried about messing things up. I love it.

At the end of the day, it isn't so much the plans that need to be amazing, but what you actually DO with your kids! I have to save my energy for the doing part.

Thanks for commenting!

Heather

Nancy said...

I love the spiral planner as well. I have a whole bunch of plans I have made up for our year but the spiral planner is so good for the day to day and week to week thing.

dstb said...

Thanks for the kick in the pants I needed to finally put my planner together.

After reading your posts over the last couple of years, I started writing out my plans in a composition book. I had purchased fancy planners, but would end up abandoning them. The composition book worked well because of its simplicity.

However, the composition book can not take extra pages like a calendar or pages of ideas I had in Word. I'd have papers in too many places.

So, I have made a planner of my own. Most of the blank pages have a weekly calendar on one side (days across top, times down side) and the other side has a list of topics (math, history, nature study...) and blank lines under each.

When I open the notebook to the 2 page spread, I have the calendar on the left and the plans for the week on the right. The calendar is not for school subjects. It simply shows when we will be out of the house for other activities. Having the list of subjects pre-printed helps remind me to get out of the house to do nature study, or that we have those letters to soldiers to write for community service and other activities that I sometimes forget.

Thanks for sharing your planners! They provide great inspiration!

Sarah

Heather said...

I'm so glad Sarah. Enjoy your planner!

Heather said...

Nancy thank you for sharing that you love a spiral planner too. I've actually written in mine at this point! ha

Nancy said...

Thank YOU Heather, since this is where I got the idea!! :)