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Wordless Wednesday

Making My Homeschool Lesson Planner*

*This post is my Back to School Prep: Part 2, I just couldn't fit all that text in the header!

Lesson planner 5

Good morning, my friends!

Over the weekend I put together a lesson planner for myself, and I thought you all might like to see it. :) I started with a dark blue, 3-ring binder, which I embellished with pretty paper, ribbon and stickers.

Lesson planner 4

Back when the boys were little we called our homeschool, "The Little Acorns Homeschool" (because tall oaks from little acorns grow, of course), and our "symbol" was a combination of oak leaves (one for each parent) and acorns (one for each boy). So I decided to use some pretty stickers I had on hand for the front label ... I'm feeling a bit nostalgic since this is the last year I'll be homeschooling all three boys. 

Now for a look inside ...

Lesson planner 2

Inside the front cover I keep loose papers to file, and on the right is a colorful class chore chart. I must admit I'm not exactly sure how I'll use it, but a package of 25 was only $2 at Michaels so I couldn't pass it up ... 

Lesson planner 1

(I have a soft spot for owls, too.)

I then added some tabs to my lesson planner:

General information: ed. plans, curriculum orders, class information, etc.

Family Living & Learning: family activities and adventures, field trips, and faith @ home, etc.

Then, a tab for each of my boys ...

And finally, the lesson planner itself, a set of weekly planning pages.

Now this is how I plan to use it.

I am keeping ALL my weekly planning pages in this master binder, but each week I will move JUST the pages that are meant for that one specific week to my Home Management Binder ...

Lesson planner 6

They'll be in the front section, directly behind the yellow daybook pages and blue master to-do-list. At the end of the week I'll swap out the "used" pages for a new set.

The weekly lesson planning pages are organized like this:

(2 sheets of paper = 4 sides)

Page 1, side A: Cover page - Monday's date, any events "of note"

9/3 ~ Labor Day, Lessons resume, (Not) Back-to-School Picnic, Nativity of Mary, first Pats game, first CCD class

Page 1, side B: Specific lessons and goals for each student that week (the page is divided into three sections)

Math, English, Science, Social Studies, Nature, Faith, etc.

Page 2, side A: Brainstorming page for seasonal/liturgical themes/ideas, recipes, field trips, activities, etc.

Discuss chores/allowance, First Day breakfast, create Mary garden/serve blueberry cake, wash our homeschool "bus," Intro to Animal Study: hang classification chart, organize subject cards, etc. ...

Page 2, side B: WeekEnd Journal (my summary of the week)

e.g. "Our first week "back to homeschool" was ..."

So after I write the summary, I'll file away those completed pages and grab next week's pages from the lesson planner ... and start all over again! I could of course, not move pages at all, and just use the lesson planner as it is, but I'm trying to streamline my planning tools as much as possible. So the HMN is really my planning "hub" these days.

Now, I do have all the weekly pages written out as far as possible ... the cover pages are all marked with events of note and the brainstorming pages are full of timely ideas for that week. I'll update that information as events arise and ideas form. The "weekly goals" and "weekend summaries" are more timely of course, and will be filled in at the start of, and end of, the week, respectively.

Does any of that make sense or am I talking in circles, lol? I'm wrapping this post up in the very early morning hours and my caffeine level is not up to snuff yet!

Before I go though, let me show you the "autumnal" cover I made up for my HMN:

HMN fall cover

It makes me very happy. :)

Well my friends, I'm going to sign off for now and jump-start my day. It's raining here in Massachusetts this morning, and it's just so lovely. We have all the windows open ... and the sound of the rain is so soothing and the coolness of the air is so refreshing. I can say all this of course, because I'm not rushing through this rain or sitting in traffic, so I'm taking a moment to count my blessings and savor the comforts and joys of my line of work. :)

So please have yourselves a good day, and thanks so much for stopping by ... I'll see you here again very soon!