Sunday, September 11, 2011

Starting our New Year~ Our Planners

The covers to our planners
I had finished our Lesson Planners a couple weeks ago. I am just now getting around to sharing them. We have had a busy couple of weeks with lots going on at our home. My planners I have created are from various web resources I found and some that others have shared with me.

I will try and explain how I am going to be using these and things I changed in order to suit our own needs and why.

The covers I did NOT create, these wonderful planner covers are from "New Beginnings"  I liked these because I found the calendar covers to be really functional because I can just look at the cover when I need to see a date etc.. I really liked them.  I made a different one for each learner so I knew who was who whenever I need to just grab it.

I had separated the sections with white dividers so that I could easily find a section quickly if I needed. Both Planners were bound with these inside and seem very durable for any wear and tear. I was pleased with the finished product.

I could have just added these to a binder, but I wanted something a bit more flexible that could fit in a suitcase so that I could take these when we are traveling. Having these bound this way makes things much easier for me than taking a bulky binder around with me.  
First Section: The Calendar

The Calendars:
The first section tab I created was for the yearly calendar. The first page was a full year planning list of the months so that I could write down goals and objectives by the month if I wanted. The following pages are calendar pages for each month starting in September 2011 (since that is when our new school year was starting ) and going through June 2012.   I printed these off from the New Beginnings site ( scroll down to see the calendar pages options )  they gave for options for calendars and planning pages. 

I plan to use the calendar pages for projects, volunteer planning, tv series or shows or just about anything else they have in their schedules that pertains to their studies.
* Note: right after the calendar I would have added an attendance record that you can also find at New Beginnings website. I chose not to since in my state attendance is not required nor is a specific amount of days so I left tht page out.

Section 2: Lessons Page 

 Lessons Pages:
The next section tab I labeled "Lessons" these are the pages I created myself to write up our own lesson outlines for the entire week. The template I created has Monday - Friday and is in a block schedule. I could not find anything that "fit" how we do our studies in this block fashion so I just created my own template to use. Since binding this I tweaked it again and now write next to the day of the week, the number of the day for example Monday is a DAY 1 day, etc.. I needed to change this that way when life happens I can just jump right to the next day and we can keep on going not worrying about the day of the week or playing catch up. You will notice also I don't date the blocks either, this is for the same reason. Its why I refer to this more as a lesson outline than a "plan". I have already begin paper clipping notes and pages ( as you can see) and adding post it notes to things as I go.

Section 3: The Journal Pages 
 Journal pages:
The third tab I created is for my Journal Pages.  There is a template form you can bring out from the New Beginnings site called "notes" and I really liked it BUT I needed to print off enough for every day of the school year so I decided to save myself some money and just use regular notebook paper and counted out how many days I needed and just added that to this section. These journal pages are a really important component I use in my teaching at home. They tell me not just what we have done and how I have a record of it, but more importantly I am able to journal trouble areas like in reading and math, make notes on things I want to work on for the next day or reminders for the following week. I refer back to this often and would be completely lost without these pages.  Its also nice to look back later on at the end of the year when you wonder if you have done enough and you can go back and actually read just what we did. Its very comforting, for me anyway~ especially when I start to second guess myself :) 

Section 4: Planning 

The next section looks a bit different for my learners (as does the rest of the lesson planner pages) because I have one child starting High School and the other starting Middle School.  More planning and more record keeping is needed for my older son, so I took extra care in looking at just what I needed to add to my older learners planner.  This first page is a general Yearly Curriculum Planning Chart I created for Highschool ( my Middle School learner has one too, its just entitled "Yearly Curriculum Planning- Middle School".  Its just a basic chart separated into Semesters ( which we are now using *first time this year, since starting homeschooling) that shows what programs and plans I have for start and end dates for specific programs and curricula.  This page gives me a broadened view of our whole year.

Other pages I have in this section (for the highschooler) is the Four Year High School Plan, again that can be found from New Beginnings.  this helps me to spread out the courses of study into a more specific plan of attack for the four years of learning. I am able to keep track on this page of what I need to purchase~ credits and course descriptions as well. here is the link to the specific page I am referring to, it is found on the left hand side of the Home Page under More Curriculum Forms. Here you will find also reading logs, attendance forms and much more.
Note:* In an effort to help the boys become much more independent I decided not to add their reading logs in here, since this is more a planner for me. They will be responsible for their own reading logs this year.

Section 5: Record Keeping
 Record Keeping:
This is the last section of my planner.  I added a Field Trip Log ( from Donna and also I added a Community Service Record that I found as a sample from The Master Planner that I really liked.

Grade Tracker Page
And then finally I added to my highs school learners planner the grade tracker page. This I made copies of from the Daily Log Book I purchased from NARS. I really liked it and find this will be just fine for us for tracking his grades and the Daily Log Book will be good for my teen to jot down what he has down and the time spent on each subject. Here is a link to where you can see samples of this book. You can see this page if you scroll down to page 60 - 61 in the handbook.
Here is where you can purchase the Daily Log for your own learner.

I hope some have found this information helpful. Our week starts this week, so we will be really busy learning some new programs and picking up where we left off with the old ones. I'll be sure to share how that is going as our week moves along.


Blossom said...

Very nice! A custom planner ... a good idea. That way you know what you need will be there and not what you don't :)
Looks good!

MissMOE said...

great post. I just made my own planner for the first time this year after spending years trying to make others work for me.

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