Homeschool Planning: How I Plan Out Our Homeschool Year

We’re 3 days into our first grade year!  So far, so good!

(The Princess even surprised us by losing her first tooth today 🙂  We almost thought she’d eaten it, but thankfully I found it next to her hamburger, lol.)

Anyway, I thought I’d share with you how I go about planning out our homeschool year….

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Everyone plans differently.  Some prefer paper, while others prefer to plan electronically.  Me?  I do both!

I start with my computer and make an overview of our entire year.  (Yes, even technology-challenged me can do this!)  Here’s how:

  • Open an Excel document.
  • Down the left-hand side I enter all of the subjects we want to cover for the year.  Across the top, I fill in the week #.  Next line down goes the day of the week.  Next line down is for the actual date.  Finally, one more line down, is the number of the day of school we’re on (in our state it’s mandatory to attend 180 days of school so I like to keep track of that.)  Oh, and below that, I highlight a row to fill in any holidays.
  • Between each week, I leave a column where I repeat the subjects, and fill it in with a color so that I can easily see the break for each week.

It looks like this:

 

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*Just a note, the pink highlight is the break between weeks.  The yellow is only there because school has already started for us now and that’s how I keep track of what we’ve done, filling it in with color to mark it as completed.

 

All I have to do then is fill in an overview of what we’ll be doing each day for the entire year. Yes, really!  Hear me out; it’s not as difficult as it sounds.  Now, this isn’t the time to look and see that on Friday, January 8th we’ll be building a model of the Eiffel Tower made completely from cheese. No. Rather, it’s just a very general overview. For example, our geography book this year just happens to have 36 weeks worth of lessons, so, in my computer overview schedule I just write that we’re covering week one’s lessons in the week one spots.

Some things don’t work out so nicely like that and you have to do a little bit of math to figure out how to schedule them. Most everything I’ve used, though, has been 36 weeks or thereabouts, so it hasn’t been too much of a pain.

When my yearly overview is done, I wait. Yep. I wait until it’s nearly time for school to start, and then I fill in my first week’s lesson plan. This is the time that I take a closer look at what we’ll need for each lesson and what it is we’ll be covering. I fill it all into my handy-dandy planner:

A Simple Plan Homeschool Planner, by Mardel

A Simple Plan Homeschool Planner, by Mardel

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I only plan one week at a time this way.  My yearly overview has made this so simple to do now.  I just check the computer to see what I need to fill in for each day.  Then, I look at each subject individually to see if I need to gather any extras and also to make sure I understand what it is I’ll be teaching!  (So far for kindergarten and now first grade this hasn’t been too difficult–thankfully, lol.)  Any extras and any appointments we have that week are written down in the margin on the right-hand side of the page, and I also make a special note at the bottom of that day’s date.

As we go through the day and complete items, I color-fill the blocks on my computer and mark them off in my paper planner.  (Yes, I do both…I’m a better-safe-than-sorry kinda girl and I do it *just in case* something awful would happen to my laptop.  Just in case.)

And that’s pretty much it!  Pretty simple, and other than a little bit of time to figure out the yearly overview, it makes our homeschool planning a breeze!

Hopefully it will be helpful to someone else out there 🙂  If you have any questions or would like to share how you do your homeschool planning, please comment below!  I’d love to hear from you!

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