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How to Plan Your Homeschool with a Combination of Technology and Paper

How to Plan Your Homeschool with a Combination of Technology and Paper
Raise your hand if you are a pencil and paper sort of person. You know the kind that despises ebooks and hates online planning. Me too!

Now, raise your hand if you also hate having to change plans once they are written and would ideally like to be able to reuse a lesson plan without rewriting. Me too! 

Well, if you are a weird mix of homeschool planning, I have finally found what seems to be the most flexible way to plan your homeschool lessons! And you are never behind because there are no dates!

Let me tell you, I have tried everything. I tried an app, I tried writing every thing on a calendar, I tried a paper planner, I tried my favorite online organizer (Trello), and I was still left feeling annoyed when I got what I perceived to be behind. So I came up with a new combination of paper planning and online organization.

The key to this method of planning is the technology in the Rocketbook! And not dating anything. That's important too. Don't wall yourself in with dates because then you will feel behind. 

Easily plan a year of reusable homeschool curriculum by utilizing a Rocketbook.

Supplies for Rocketbook Homeschool Planning

How to Use a Rocketbook to Plan Your Homeschool

Now that you have gathered your supplies you are ready to start! Be forewarned, this is not a super speedy way to plan (not that I think any of them are); just give yourself plenty of time. 

If you haven't used a Rocketbook prepare to be amazed! It functions as a regular notebook, but once you finish writing on a page you use the free phone app to scan the page and send it to your email or various other places. Then you wipe the page clean with the included microfiber cloth and a little water, and you can reuse. It is a never ending notebook! 

For planning purposes, I think it is easiest to start with a curriculum that is fairly straightforward as to what constitutes a lesson. For me, this was my youngest's handwriting. 1 page was basically a lesson. So, I chose a color, because pretty colors make everything more fun, and just wrote in my rocket book each lesson. I didn't list them across the page, but rather wrote them in one column going down the page leaving enough room on the left side to note the date and amount of time spent on the lesson. 

Once you are through the whole curriculum, scan the Rocketbook pages. I send them directly to Trello where I can organize them, but you can also email them to yourself or just send them wherever you like. Now you can print them for use over and over; this is where a lot of the value comes in!

See, now you are all ready if you have multiple kids or future kids use the same curriculum. You have the lessons down and can just reprint.

Or maybe you are like me and want your teens to be more self sufficient. Print them their own copy to use and mark off when they finish. That way you can see exactly what they have done, and they can see what each assignment will take and plan accordingly. Either way, you just have to write it once! 

Plan Your Whole Homeschool Year

Now that you have one subject done, repeat for the next and the next until you have all the subjects for all the kids planned! 

Print each and place in a binder with a divider label with the child's name and subject. I also like to leave an 'other' tab for each child with notebook paper where I can write down unplanned learning like sports we decide to sign up for or random classes and field trips we add. This way you always have a place to make notes.

In the front I keep a log of all our read alouds because we don't want to miss out on those hours! I also like to keep a loose schedule of what subjects the kids need to do each day. You can print copies of those below. 

How to Use Your Rocketbook Homeschool Plan

I mentioned below how important it is to not date your lesson plans! The only ones I have dated are co-op days because that is basically how I identify them with the date and topic. By not dating each lesson you have the freedom to just do the next thing and not feel like you are always trying to catch up!

Once a lesson is done simply write the date and how long the student spent on it (at least if you calculate hours like we have to in Missouri). If you miss a day, no problem, just do it the next day. 

Once we get to the end of the page, I total the hours for that page at the bottom. This makes it easier to flip through and get an estimate of finished hours every once in a while, so I know if we need to be packing in a bit more school, or maybe we can have an extra day off. No matter what I do calculate hours every quarter and keep that in the front of my binder, so I know roughly where each child is as far as hours go. 

If you don't finish a subject just move those unfinished pages to the next year's binder or print new ones. The Rocketbook makes this style of planning so much more efficient and flexible.

For me this has been an amazing way to plan. I need a plan or I kind of just do whatever I want, and I if I am going to undertake something, especially something major like homeschooling, I want to be prepared. I can't trust myself to plan each week or month because things always distract me! This way, I can plan all my lessons, at least the core ones, and not feel behind if we miss a day. Plus I can reuse my plans for future kids by simply reprinting! And I can make my kids personalized planners by hitting print and placing in binders. So easy! Rocketbook planning is a huge homeschool win for me!

Printable Homeschool Planning Pages

I mentioned earlier on, three other pages I use in my planner to keep me organized. They include a read aloud log, an overview of the curriculum that may kids are using, and a daily curriculum plan (use one per kid). You can download these below if you wish to use them. 

Free Printable Homeschool Planner Pages

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