Schedules, appointments and lessons, oh my! Homeschool Planet will help the homeschooling mom keep all her ducks in a row. As a member of the Homeschool Review Crew I was recently given the chance to use their online planner. This if not your ordinary planner!
Over the past 20 years I’ve been using a basic fill-in-the-blank lesson plan binder for scheduling out homeschool lessons. With 4 (or more) students to track, we had to have some type of system in place. But I also needed an appointment calendar and a menu planner. And a bulletin board to post all those add-on items like shopping lists and volunteer commitments. Homeschool Planet promised to coordinate all these things. I had to try it!
First things first. To begin I had to register an account – there’s no charge for this and sign up was easy. Then I was able to poke around their site, making note of all the freebies they have available and the curriculum they have for sale at really good rates, and then . . . the planner.
After putting in my order I was able to begin immediately customizing. It only took minutes to get lessons entered – for subjects I teach to multiple children, I only had to enter once, choosing which students were assigned that lesson. In less than half an hour I had language lessons, math lessons, reading lessons, science lessons all entered. The best part was with the click of my mouse the calendar was updated and voila! Instant lesson plans!
What about when the schedule changes or an assignment is not completed? No problem! Entries are easily moved from one day to another. That has been one of my complaints of other online lesson planners I’ve tried. The rearranging was always difficult. Not so with Homeschool Planet. Shifting things forward is really easy.
But wait! I haven’t even told you the best part, yet. At least what I think is the best part. Homeschool Buyers Co-op also offers lesson plans for many popular resources that can be plugged automatically into your calendar. That’s right. Automatically means it shows up like magic. I chose to use the lesson plans that coordinate with Mystery of History (we already own this resource, but it is available for purchase) and it was super simple to just click the button and have the assignments loaded into my calendar. I was able to choose which students, and how many days per week we would need lessons, etc.
And there’s more! I can coordinate school lessons with outside activities and family commitments. I can view everyone at once, or each child individually. You can use it with your PC, Google Calendar, Kindle, Android – talk about versatility! Every person in the family can have their own log-in if you choose, that way you can sync everyone’s schedules and activities. Would that be terrific with a house full of teens?
What about when the schedule changes or an assignment is not completed? No problem! Entries are easily moved from one day to another. That has been one of my complaints of other online lesson planners I’ve tried. The rearranging was always difficult. Not so with Homeschool Planet. Shifting things forward is really easy. The planner is very customizable. I can move lessons around. Change appointments. Add new events. Color code people and events, change the background. Make it your ‘happy place.’ Everything is in one place.
There is an option to print your daily or weekly plan. This gives my child (or mom) a pen & paper checklist they can keep in their binder or on the fridge. I even have the schedule emailed to you (or your child!) Right now I receive daily and weekly reminders. I will be changing that to a weekly reminder now that we are getting into the groove of things.
While it has been easy to get things set up, the video tutorials have been a big help (I’m very visual that way.) I am now taking time to work with the widgets. There is a spot for everything, even book lists for the library and supply needs for my lessons and . . . I guess I could go on and on. Instead, you can try for yourself.
In June, I was able to sign up and receive free lesson plan that automatically filled in my planner calendar! I ordered the Mystery of History lesson plan but you can choose from many options. Once I chose how I wanted it to fit into our schedule (4 day week? 5 day week?) it literally took seconds for it to show up in my planner!
Homeschool Planet also offers amazing deals on curriculum of all sorts for all ages and all teaching styles. I am excited to see the Student IDs. I am looking to have these made for my kids since we can often get discounts at museums and events if they have a student ID. Have I told you about the field trips yet? Oh, yeah, there are virtual field trips available! We’ve toured the National Aquarium, and visted historic sites, right at our kitchen table, for free!
A plain ol’ pen-n-paper type of planner has been my tool of choice. I must say, although I am taking my time to get the hang of an online planner I am seeing the benefits of having a ‘command central’ of sorts right on the desktop of my computer. Because I do not carry a phone or device with me that connects to the internet, I still use my spiral bound daily planner, but Homeschool Planet is bringing me into the modern age!
See how my fellow Homeschool Review Crew families are using this terrific planner, just click on the image below.