Tonight I thought I would share a little bit about how I plan for a new year, or rather how I am currently planning (it changes every year). I shared some basic info on how I was handing planning in my previous post, but I thought I might use this time to share with you exactly how I am getting things done right now.
As I stated in my first planning post, I am planning in 6 week terms. My goal is to start the year with 3 terms worth of lessons mapped out, as well as all the papers, copies, etc. organized into term folders for future use. It’s all about simplification folks! I am not going to lie, it’s been a lot of work. But it is going to save me so much time weekly/daily and that’s a good reason for me! I would much rather plan and prep for a week every 6 weeks than every single weekend. I started out with a form I found at Donna Young’s site and tweaked it to fit my needs and preferences.
Anyhow, here is an example of the form I started out with:
^ week Lesson plan Log -
And here is what I ended up with:
Math Lesson plan term
Unfortunately you can’t see my beautiful font on these pages, because it did not transfer when I uploaded the document, but you get the idea. SO I go through each book and lay things out with a daily schedule. I then print these pages and put them behind the correct term’s tab in my record binder. I also printed off a copy of the first term’s plans to place in my son’s binder. This is what he will refer to when he looks through his binder and fills out his daily assignment sheet at the beginning of the day. (You can find that form in my previous post, More about starting a new school year – part 1.) So I have done that for each and every subject we are doing this year, except Tapestry of Grace, which I made a custom form for and has both boys’ work on one page. I am still trying to decide how I am going to work with the TOG plans for their work binders, since we do a lot of our Tapestry activities as a group. Oh yes, and I still have to make a spelling lesson plan for Drew, then I will be done with this phase of my planning. In case you were curious, here is a blank form I made to use for TOG lesson planning:
TOG Weekly block planner
I have made lots of forms in my homeschooling journey, but this has to be one of my favorite so far. It is typeable and has all the info I need in one place. Anyhow, this is what I use to plan all our TOG related work for every week. There are 2 pages because we are doing the curriculum half pace for now, so I stretch 1 week plan out over 2 weeks.
I plan on writing another post this week on how I go about planning my TOG in such a way that I don’t forget things or schedule too much work in one day, so stay tuned for that!
Anyhow, after going through this process with all our subjects for the coming year, I have a great road map that shows me exactly what I need to prepare for the coming term and put into the kid’s binders for them to work through. I will also be using the plans on these pages to pre-prepare (is that a real word) by getting papers ready and organized for upcoming terms.
Just a few sidenotes – in case you were not already aware – I love forms!! But I am never happy with just using someone else’s forms as they are, so I tweak and I modify until they are exactly what I want. Yes, I
waste spend a great deal of time doing this. It makes me happy, what else can I say?
Secondly, this is my first time ever attempting to plan so far ahead. Mostly just because I am not a schedule-it, plan-it, prep-it ahead of time kind of person. I like to fly by the seat of my pants whenever possible. But I am become painfully aware that when you homeschool, and have 4 kids, this is not always the best way to do things. It’s not an easy change for me, but I know it will be worth it. The hardest part will be sticking to the plan as much as possible, at least when it is in my control to do so. Life happens!
So I hope I haven’t bored you to tears with all me detailed explanations, or confused you. I just thought it would make for an interesting read. I really enjoy reading how other homeschool families make it work and I hope you will, too!
See you soon!