Monday, November 3, 2014

Homeschool Lesson Planner

When I first started out on the homeschooling adventure, I planned every day's lessons and activities. I enjoy lesson planning-super nerd here! After the newbie-ness wore off I soon realized that with a special needs child I could not plan more than 1 month in advance. Some super homeschooler moms like to plan a whole year out, but I can't because of my child's disabilities. One day my daughter can remember how to do addition and subtraction, but then the next day she has completely forgotten everything (including spelling her name). I have to give a lot of grace and patience with teaching new materials or topics.

I hate, absolutely can't stand, planning lessons and then having to erase my hard work because my daughter is in a funk and can't concentrate. I have googled hundreds of lesson planning ideas and lesson plan books, but they are either too expensive or I have to write out the lesson plan and then when my daughter gets in a funk I have to erase it with what we actually accomplished that day.

I found one super neat-o idea from a school teacher. I copied her idea to fit with my special needs homeschooling.

Click here for the original idea.

I took her idea and personalized our own notebook to our homeschooling needs.

If we are having a rough day, I can move the lesson to another day or just write what we did accomplish on a fun shaped sticky note. I DO NOT have to re-write out new lesson plans for the day!

 I like to write out all the books that we use or will use during the school year. If we have another first grader that comes into our family, I do not want to have to plan 1st grade all over again. I can just use this same notebook.

I like to keep a record of grades and a checklist of assignments that we do weekly. If the "schooling police" come and check on our homeschool, I want to show them the progress that we've made during the year. This step is not necessary in my state, but I like to err on the side of caution...or maybe I just like giving grades :).

There is one tiny con to this method: it takes a long time to create. It took about 3 hours to trace the lines for 36 weeks of school and write the days of the week and the subjects, and making the tabs for the 36 weeks of school. I didn't mind taking a long time creating this lesson planner because I like to do craft projects. I broke the time up into little chunks throughout the week to give myself a break from tracing.

I have enjoyed this lesson planner throughout our first couple of months homeschooling 1st grade. I love the idea of using sticky notes! When my daughter is having a rough day when can move over the sticky note to another day. I am now beginning to make 2nd grade's lesson planner. Although if you do not want to make one for each grade than you could just make one and replace your sticky notes with the new materials for the new school year. 

If you are not into making your own lesson planner, click here for a free sticky note lesson planner template that you can customize and print out. You can whole punch the printouts and place your lesson planner in a binder. I found this template after I started making the 2nd grade lesson planner-oh, well maybe I will use it for the 3rd grade.

Alright homeschool parents, what do you use to help plan you child's school lessons? Do you have any good resources that you're willing to share?


  1. I do homeschol but loosly follow the cirriculum lesson plan schedule from the cirriculum we use. I have heard that the book "Managers of Their Home" by Steve and Terri Maxwell is really good.

  2. Here is the link:

  3. Wow, That's a great resource. Thanks for sharing!