One of our goals here at A Plan in Place is to encourage independent learning. While that will of course look very different among each family and each of your children, the big picture is the same. We feel that putting a homeschool planner in the hands of each of your children is a great start to the path of independence and accountability. And, let’s face it, the added bonus of efficient planning, organization, and record keeping all in one place is a bonus for mom too! If any of these are going on in your homeschool, it could be that your homeschool student needs a planner.
Here are just 4 signs your homeschool student needs a planner!
1) They can’t start school without you
This is big one! While I dream of well organized mornings where I am 100% ready to tackle the day with them, I found that many times I am distracted by a ringing telephone, a knock at the door, or a surprise visit from my mother in law. It became important to me very early on that my boys could get started without me. From their very early homeschooling years, they knew to start on the shelf with their planner. Even if I don’t have every part filled out there is always enough to get them going on something.
2) If you are busy, they aren’t working
Even though I hope to be fully available to my kids, there are those times when there are phone calls to make, letters to write, work to be done, and laundry to be hung. I think I should be able to step away and have them stay on track. The accountability that goes with seeing what they have accomplished (items crossed off on their planner) can really help with this area. Just checking in with them to see where they are and having a visual snapshot will make it crystal clear.
3) They have pieces of paper everywhere
Spelling lists, incomplete writing assignments, book notes, tests, and papers everywhere are a definite sign that they need some help organizing. I have two pockets in each of my boys’ planners and it has helped to tame the paper clutter substantially. I use the pockets for the papers I want to keep such as tests, final writing assignments and anything else that will represent work completed. I also put into the back incomplete assignments so they always know where they are.
4) You don’t feel like they ever get anything accomplished
If you are like me, sometimes at the end of the day you might ask…”What have you been doing all day?” However, when I look at their planner and their work for the day either listed or checked off, it usually gives us both a great sense of accomplishment. The flip side, but just as important, is the fact that it can show some real inconsistencies. You can use the boxes for the assignments to log the amount of time spent and quickly and easily see where adjustments need to be made. This has really helped us to see all that is being accomplished or the reasons it isn’t.
If you are finding yourself frustrated and wanting to help your homeschool student get on track and stay on track, consider a customized homeschool planner just for them. See how empowering them can foster and improve independence and steer them on the right track to becoming more responsible. After all, I was given some advice once that I will never forget…
“Remember you aren’t just raising children, you are raising future adults.”