After trying so many different printable lesson planning pages, and even making my own, I discovered I needed a better way. I began looking at lesson planners & stumbled upon The Ultimate Homeschool Planner by Debra Bell, published by Apologia Press. I purchased one & gave it a try. I began by doing almost every activity listed in the planner, such as a "planning retreat," figuring out my children's different learning styles (and they are all very different!), filling in character goals, and so much more. I quickly got bogged down by all the different things I felt required to do. Then I realized, this planner was just a guide to help me. That discovery was very liberating. I'm now in my second school year using The Ultimate Homeschool Planner, and I have ceased looking for the perfect planner. Now I simply use the parts that I feel are helpful to me and let the rest go.
While I like most things about this planner, the truth is I don't like everything about it. The planner contains so many calendars that I feel bogged down by trying to use them all, so I just don't. I use only the ones that work for me and leave the rest alone.
The records pages are less than ideal, as I would like a block in which to write down each test or quiz grade in a particular subject. But there's simply not room enough to house them all on the pages provided. I'm still working on my own printable pages, although I have searched for record books online & came up empty. So if you have found one of these, please don't hesitate to let me know!
I like the informational pages, as well as the tips & tricks shared in the planner. They're very helpful, especially if you're just starting out! My favorite part of the planner is the weekly lesson planner. This is the "meat" of it for me. I do have to share spaces for subjects, for example, English & Spelling always share a space -- and I haven't caught them fighting yet!
Because it has room for 6 students, and I only teach 2 grades, I find it very easy to write in all of the things that I need to squeeze into the week. If you have more students, you may find it helpful to set up your planner much like they did (examples are included). Their method didn't work for me, so I set mine up differently. I discuss just how I do things in my video.
I found The Ultimate Homeschool Planner to be just what I needed to stay organized in my homeshool. Maybe you will, too!