If you’ve been in the homeschooling community for more than 5 minutes, you’ve likely heard of Apologia Educational Ministries.
Maybe you have even used some of their products.
What do you think of when you hear Apologia? I personally think of Science books.
Did you know they also have planners?? They have planners for moms and students. Apologia sent me a complimentary copy of The Ultimate Homeschool Planner with the orange cover so I could try it out and tell you all about it.
It also comes with a yellow or blue cover. When I say yellow, blue or orange, I don’t want to confuse you. It is not a solid color. They have a design and they are all beautiful!
For example, the orange cover looks like this:
They are all pretty, so you really can’t go wrong!!
When you first open it, you see a pocket that can hold any loose papers you may need. There is another pocket in the back as well.
The pockets are nice for when you get soccer schedules. I put the schedule in the pocket until o had the time to put all the games into the planner.
The first page is multiple years at a glance to help you plan ahead. The planner I got went from 2013-2017.
After the table of contents, there is a 12 page user’s guide which explains how to use the planner in the most efficient way.
The author suggests that at the beginning of each year you have a “yearly planning retreat”. This is a time you set aside for yourself to plan out your year. She suggests you leave the house. Go to a coffee shop or the library.
Once the year has started, she further suggests you have monthly and weekly planning sessions and she goes over how to do that and what to do during those planning sessions.
These suggestions were a bit overwhelming for me at first, because I’m not a huge planner. The idea of sitting down for 4-8 hours and planning out my school year seems daunting. I know lots of homeschool moms do that. (The more organized ones) I’ve just never been that mom. I want to be, though, so it’s nice to see it all laid out with an explanation on how to do it.
This planner has given me the motivation I needed to be more organized in my homeschool! That’s a major win!
Okay… There is also a one-year planning grid so you can list out all the days you will be doing school for the year. And plan out your vacations, birthdays or whatever other days you may need to know about ahead of time where you won’t be doing school.
Before the actual planner pages, there are a few pages where you can write down character and academic goals for each child. And then there is a page to write down family priorities (think academic goals, character goals, etc.), as well as a page to write down resources you will use during the school year. This is a good place to write down website usernames and passwords for online curriculum you will use!
Next is the monthly and weekly planning pages. I like to have both because I do like to see my month all at once.
On the weekly planning pages, there are a couple of examples in the user’s guide as to how to organize it. You can list your students and then list what they will do for each subject or you can list each day of the week and then list what will be done by each child on that day. It really just depends on how you like to plan out your week.
How I use it
I decide to do it by the day. So, I listed Monday through Friday down the left hand side and then listed my children at the top.
On Mondays, we go to a tutorial where my kids take classes and I teach classes. So, there is nothing to plan for our family on that day. Instead, I used that day to write out what I would be doing in the classes I teach. This worked out really well to keep me organized!!
I’m happy to keep using this planner. I like online things, but there’s nothing like having a pen and paper and planning things out. I prefer handwritten planners for sure. I still want reminders for appointments and such to come through on my phone, but I like my homeschool stuff to be something I can hold in my hand. :)
Information at a glance:
What is it? A planner for your homeschool and family life – The Ultimate Homeschool Planner
For whom? Homeschool moms and dads
How much is it? $29