Disclaimer: I received compensation to write this review, but these thoughts are all my own. In fact, I plan to keep using the Homeschool Planet Online Planner as we move on to a new year of homeschooling.
I recently brought my youngest back home from public school, midyear. She thrives on routine and order, but she's also gone through a stressful half a year, so I've been looking for something that I can easily plan (since this was so sudden!) and something that is flexible enough to reorder as needed. I've found the Homeschool Planet Online Planner to be such an essential homeschool mom help for me as I jump back in to homeschooling the rest of first grade!
I believe these lower grades should be enjoyable, helping our kiddos develop a love of learning. So, when we decided to bring my daughter back home, I spent the first weeks helping her relax back into learning. We homeschooled kindergarten, and, since she now knew the opposite (the school experience), she was eager to get back into the homeschool-type of learning instead. Tracking homeschool learning is a breeze with Homeschool Planet Online Planner.
After-the-Fact Homeschool Tracking
Even though we were not doing a full first grade schedule like her (impossibly long) public school day, we could write things we learned in the seven subjects required in the state of Illinois.
I call this method "after-the-fact" tracking or planning. It is just right for homeschool tracking for the younger grades. Here's an example: if we ended up reading books with a certain science topic, that would be our day's science. Or, if we played a game with two dice I can mark it as math practice as we learn number bonds. Climbing on the swing set is gym class.
Using the Homeschool Planet Online Planner to track after-the-fact works so well. I can go in and type of what we did each day for the subjects. Even weeks later, I can go back and see this homeschool documentation, even though in our memories it was a "fun day" reading and playing together. If needed, I can also print each week out.
Homeschool Tracking Homeschooling Time Online
Some states require parents to track how many days or specific hours in a day are spent homeschooling. Illinois doesn't, but I did want to see how long we spending on various activities. This is easy to set up with Homeschool Planet. When I set up a class, I could specify for each subject whether or not I wanted to track it by time, even splitting that into a set time for the whole subject or times for the individual assignments under that subject. On this same page, I was able to set a general time (20 mins for math, 30 mins for read aloud, 5 minutes for read to mom, etc.) so that if I forgot to go back and type in the actual time, at least the general amount of time is tracked each day.
My daughter loves that she can follow along with our daily plan by checking off each assignment as we finish.
Even though I'm determined to make the rest of first grade as stress free as possible, my daughter is so eager to get to work that she plans to finish a math book that we have, as well as a phonic/reading book, both before Memorial Day (when school ends).
The Homeschool Planet Online Planner helps out again. She was excited to see the printed "to do" lists. (She must take after me in liking organization.) She said, "Let's do everything in the order on the sheet!" and was happy to check it off when we finished each item. (And I can always change the order of subjects on the computer to meet what I want!)
Using the Homeschool Planet Online Planner
As can be expected for a homeschool planner, it's easy to set up classes and assignments. It helps me add a general assignment each day (and can automatically add lesson numbers to the subsequent days, if we want) or I can type a specific assignment for each day. I went through the books we have and put in the lessons remaining. Then, I can work with the drag and drop planning page to put the specific assignments in order over the remaining days of school.
Being flexible is also a key part of the Homeschool Planet Online Planner. When I log in the next morning, if there is a subject that I did not mark as finished from the day before, an alert will come up. It'll ask me what I want to do: delete the assignment, mark it finished, or move it to today. What a great way to flexibly adjust plans to meet the needs of my kids and the time we have (or don't have) for finishing subjects each day.
See the Homeschool Planet Online Planner in Action
I made a short video review sharing some in use shots of the planner! I should mention that Homeschool Planet has tons of help videos to help you get started. I feel like I have so much to learn about this powerful homeschool resource.
Homeschool Planned for You
Homeschool planning gets even easier when you are planning out a homeschool year with Homeschool Planet. The Homeschool Planet Lesson Plan Marketplace is filled with some of the most popular publishers on the homeschool curricula market.
For example, the publishers listed below sell ready-to-go lesson plans that are so easy to integrate straight into the online planner:
- All About Reading & Spelling
- Master Books
- Notgrass History
- Math Mammoth
- The Art Of Problem Solving
- Teaching Textbooks
- And many more!
Although I have been working with just a portion of a school year, I set up a science class with my daughter using one of the workbook lesson plans included in the marketplace to see how it worked. It was so easy. I selected how many lessons a day or week and which days, and then the class was ready to track. My daughter enjoyed the lessons, too.
More Homeschool Planning Help
The Homeschool Planet Online Planner has so many features that I have not found yet, especially because I'm just using it with my first grader right now. Here are some of the great things I know it has that I have not even played around yet.
- Grading, report cards, and transcripts
- Ability to add resources to a lesson plan, such as books, media, links to a website or YouTube video, or details about manipulatives that may be needed
- Ability to schedule not just classes and assignments but also chores, field trips, sports practice, doctor appointments, and music classes
- Separate login for each student or family member. You choose what they can view and edit.
I am so excited to have found this online planner. It is something I wish I'd found earlier to use with my older children. Now I'm glad to use it with my youngest.
You may wonder why I don't use it with my two other kids for now. This year is weird to me. My oldest is half-time in the high school, and sets up his own "unschool" lessons with my husband's guidance during the rest of the day. My second child is in public school fifth grade and may return to school next year for sixth. Boohoo!
Want to Try the Homeschool Planet Online Planner?
You can give the Homeschool Planet Online Planner completely for free for 30 day (valid through June 30, 2023). This 30-day free full version trial is completely free. No credit card information is required. Get access to all the features Homeschool Planet offers. In addition, with this free trial, readers will be able to pick the lesson plan of their choice from our vast collection of integrated publishers.
I know when you give this a try you will love it as much as I do! Check it out!