Tell us about how you planned out your year.
Did you use a planner? homemade or bought?
Did it work the whole year or was it a flop?
Did you plan it out in one sitting or did you fly by the seat of your pants?
A little bit of all of the above! It was our first year so I fully intended to change things up, and I did, repeatedly.
I started using outlines from Donna Young's website...then pieced together curriculum that I changed multiple times. I had a purchased teachers planner (I had intended to be a ps teacher!) so I used that for a while, AND I typed up weekly lists for the kids. Then I fell behind so we just used the planner, then I used the planner and wrote daily lists for the kids each morning, then I ditched the planner and just wrote daily lists, then I started writing in a notebook and continuing with the daily lists (so I could try planning ahead again)...then I stopped writing the daily lists last week. And the kids are just checking it off in my notebook. This is my favorite so far, not sure how long that will last though, lol.
So, at this point, we have eight weeks to go and I have a basic idea of what I want them to get through. I just wrote it out the other day and broke it down into how many sections/chapters/lessons they need to get through each week for each main subject. Then I can just plan week by week. Then I plan to do some unit studies and fun games over the summer so we don't have that "summer slide" since I don't plan to do a two month review like they got in ps.
But mainly, I have been flying by the seat of my pants in this first "trial" year (that has turned into "I am never sending them back to school!").
We are doing 2nd grade and pre-K this year..
We started off doing unit studies with all other subjects incorporated in until Dec, but during our Christmas break I decided we needed to change things up and do.. block scheduling I guess? It has worked out pretty nicely for us thus far.. We will end close to the end of June.
As for a planner, etc. I have all my lesson plans typed out on my phone (I put together my own curriculum), and then transfer it to my written planner at the end of each day to keep record of what we have done.
I made a rough plan of my lessons, ideas, projects for Christmas through Spring break over Christmas, and then from Spring break through the end of the year over Spring break. Every Sunday I take time to cement plans and wrap up any loose ends for the week. :)
I made my own planner on excel, printed it out so I could pencil everything in, but also had it all typed in on excel as a general outline - which I never ended up going back to reference. The one I write is the one I used all year. If the curriculum had the entire schedule in it, I wrote it down. On other subjects I went to about Christmas to see if that was working for us. If it was, I kept using that routine, if it didn't I switched it up til I found something that fit. We ended up getting 2 weeks ahead in some subjects so I had to erase and rewrite a few of the subjects, but otherwise, we've stuck with it and its worked out great. I almost feel like I'm making the kids slow down sticking with the schedule at times though, so I think next year I'll only write down two weeks at a time so its easier to change things when it needs to be.
We do it a bit like KBM. We have a plan for the week, (actually we plan for a month) but I don't write it down until we've done it. Makes a nice section for my portfolio that way. We do have a syllabus from the very beginning with all of the books we intend to read, the science topics we intend to cover, etc but it's very loose (no dates at all). We have crossed off nearly all of the topics and books! YAY!
So this year I flew by the seat of my pants. I knew subjects and such, but I didn't plan as much as I probably should have. :( So I'm spending my time right now taking all the things they need to learn from Rebecca Rupp's Home Learning Year by Year, I wrote all those ideas on paper for all my kids, and now I'm typing them up. I think I might also consult the What Your ___ Grader Needs to Know, just to get a better feel for it all. I already have topics I want to study, things they've been asking about and things I just think they need to know more about (our family history and such), so then I'll figure out how all of that hits all of the points they need to know.
I use a notebook calendar that has a monthly overview and then breaks it down into weeks for my planning, and I use a desktop monthly calendar to keep track of what we did, how many days we've been going, and how many hours we worked.
I sort of used a planner. We have a boxed curriculum. I plan out 6 weeks in advance....that is how long our semesters go. I then block out a week off....and during that week I write out the next 6 weeks. We are going for 37 lessons this section because we have family comming and my kids didn't want to take time off before they got here and work while they are here. I did a little bribing. LOL I will work out the next 6 weeks sometime this week because our time off should be now and I don't want to do all that work while I have company. I have however scanned ALL seatwork through the end of this year for my oldest.
I use a planner for me and each of the kids have one as well. I also list the extra reading I want them doing in their planner....and they have to write their favorite and not favorite parts about their day. A little creative writting snuck in....and they don't realize it. LOL