Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Plan and Document your Homeschool (and have fun while doing it!)

We have (Finally!) got a rhythm and a plan going for our school year that works for us and that we are actually getting done on a consistent basis- rather than just theoretically thinking will work. I have a daily minimum Three Rs (reading, writing and arithmetic) that Cole needs to get down and more than enough extras to plug in when we can. There are so many things I want to do and learn with my boys but I have definitely found just because I have the idea and desire doesn't mean it's going to happen. I need a plan and I'm also finding, I need a planner. I have always loved the idea of physical, write in planners but have never really found them realistic enough to need on a regular basis for my day to day life. So much of my daily life is just routine chores and tasks, there's really no reason to have them written down in a book, no matter how cute it is (believe me, I've tried to justify it many times to myself!). But I am finding that school plans are so much more likely to be executed if I have thought and written them out in advance, rather than waiting for an idea to pop into my head and then having to go gather up all the supplies, etc. 

But then it comes down to which planner to use, because there are about 100 just homeschooling planners alone. Well Sarah Janisse Brown of Thinking Tree Books was so generous to send me a copy of her planner, The Eclectic Homeschooler's Plan Book-A 180 Day Plan to give a try out in my homeschool planning endeavors.

 I love how open ended all of the Thinking Tree products are- you can really customize them to exactly what your family needs to get out of them! The cover alone is a motivating start with it's bright and engaging hand drawn pictures and a soft to the touch matte finish. This is a thick book with a nice, large format to fit a lot of plans into. With the signature Thinking Tree flair, these aren't just ordinary black and white pages, but all of your planning boxes are set against a fun floral and swirls pattern to color in. 

I think when homeschooling older and a little bit more independent learners, this book would be a great for fit for the daily spiral notebook assignment checklist method Sarah Mackenzie encourages in this post. This is really a funner and slightly more detailed version of just that idea. I think I am personally going to be using this planner slightly more out of the box while my kids are younger and document weekly projects, achievements and just fun moments I want to remember from our schooling journey. I think it will be really neat to have a written record of all the highlights of our early learning years! 

There is also a neat bonus feature sprinkled through out the book: There is a Plans & Perspective page to journal a little more long term goals and visions and a correlating Remember... page to document stand out school experiences. This is a well made, beautiful book that is straight forward enough in it's format that I think you could use it in a multitude of ways.

I am loving our experience with Thinking Tree books so far and can't wait to share some more of these treasures with you. Being a Charlotte Mason inspired Mama, I am especially excited to dive into the Timeline of History and Picturing the Past art study books. 

I received this book from The Thinking Tree LLC.

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