Hey, homeschoolers! In this post, I’m going to share the homeschool planner I use now to manage our family’s schedules. It’s ridiculously simple and customizable.
Want to jump straight to the planner and avoid all my noise. Here you go.
I’ve Tried Every Homeschool Planner There Is
During my first year of homeschooling, I created the most impressive and overcomplicated file-folder system to organize every day and week of our entire school year. After a few months when that was a bust I swapped to the most complex binder planning system ever seen. When that bombed I swapped to fancy planners. Then I switched to printable planners that I could print as needed.
Here’s the thing – I absolutely suck at using a planner, and I’ve tried (and failed) every planner ever recommended. That first month is beautifully fleshed out and then I never use it again. It collects dust and I’m no more organized as a homeschooling mother.
Not only is it disheartening but I have constantly wondered what’s wrong with me. Is it ADHD? Anxiety? Am I lazy?
Let’s all just acknowledge that I’ll never be the Instagram/Pinterest mom of my dreams.
My Failed Attempt to Craft the Perfect Homeschool Planner
I even spent 2018 trying to plan out THE PERFECT planner for homeschoolers that I could offer here. Something that would really encompass what everyone needs. I researched, I asked around, I dug through the internet.
Spoiler alert, it’s not possible. Not without endless customization possibilities. It’s almost as if, while we all homeschool, we’re also all totally different people with different needs. Shocking.
I Swapped to Digital Homeschool Planners
This year I gave up and went digital, utilizing the gorgeous Trello system that everyone talks so highly of. Then I gave up again and swapped to something simple… Google Sheets. It’s easy, doable, FREE, and super customizable. Technically Trello is free too, but I got too hung up on pretty visuals that I was procrastinating.
Use This Homeschool Planner in The Following Ways (Or None of Them, I Don’t Care)
It turns out if I can change things and update things, I’m more likely to stick to a schedule. This is a stark contrast to penning everything out or printing a schedule for a year just to toss it because it didn’t make sense six months in. It’s not permanent.
Writing things out for the whole year, where I can easily glance at it all in one spot is a great way to track overall progress. This is why The Group Schedule and The Student Schedules are set up for the whole year as opposed to just a week or a month.
Here’s a breakdown of the different parts of this planner and how to use them:
The Daily Schedule is where I’m keeping track of our day-to-day obligations a week at a time.
My kids and I all have various Zoom class schedules throughout the week. It’s super chaotic to track so I try to get everything posted into Google Sheets. The biggest perk of using this system is being able to pop the kids’ Zoom links right into the schedule and then share it with them.
I created this as a morning, afternoon, and evening loop schedule for the core version of this shareable planner.
This is where I’m keeping track of our group activities. We watch documentaries together as part of our school work. I use this space to mark the documentary resources we’ll be utilizing. We also do all of our science work together as well as our History Quest activities.
If you’d like each of your students to have their own standalone schedule, you can make a copy for each kid. With Google being the gold standard in free online organization, each of my kids has their own Gmail account through the school district that they use for Google Classrooms and Canvas. Their familiarity with Google makes it crazy-easy to share Sheets. Both of my big kids are trained on how to view and understand their schedule.
+The Printable Weekly Schedule and Monthly Schedule
The printable pages are how I prepare progress each month. My family utilizes a homeschool resource center during the standard educational year. We turn in progress reports to our advisor by the last day of each month. I actually prefer backward planning in a lot of ways. It feels good, almost like a gratitude journal, or a “what we accomplished” journal. I record everything we’ve as we’ve done it throughout each week and then print it out at the end of the month!