Life is very different now than it was for me when I started homeschooling. I can’t imagine my life without apps like instagram, facebook and twitter because I can keep in touch with family and friends. What has not changed with the digital age of smart phones and tablets are the benefits of using a homeschool paper planner.
Unlike apps, there are 3 reasons lesson planning with a homeschool paper planner sticks.
1. The physical act of writing cements plans.
Living in an age of instant replies and notifications, information is, well – instant gratification.
Lesson plans, detailed or not, take time to mull over and goals can change within the same week depending on how your children progress. And no, you don’t need to use dated lesson planning pages and worry about erasing. The pages I created for my homeschool planner are undated because I don’t believe in erasing.
I do believe that the time it takes me to sit down and write about what my children need to focus on for the week cements my plans. When I slow down and avoid getting caught up in the digital world of information instantly it helps me to remember which skills my kids are working on.
2. There is no loading time or getting sidetracked.
Waiting on apps that have crashed, trying to load from a cloud or a device that needs to recharge aggravate me when I am ready to start in the morning. Did I mention constant updates to sections of digital planners that I do not need or use wastes precious time?
Paper planners are ready instantly and I am not tempted to check email, facebook or instagram while I am teaching. Being device-free, I can plug into the needs of my children. Whether I want to simply doodle, jot down notes about my boys’ academic progress or list a new curriculum resource I am eye-balling, my paper planner can be laid out to fit my teaching and personality style. It is hard to get that same personal feeling from a digital planner.
3. Lesson plans and goals stay real.
Too, when I first started homeschooling and was using a digital planner, I realized how “happy” I was to type away and fill in all kinds of objectives, goals and lessons for the day.
All my finely tuned lesson plans looked polished and professional in digital format, but it wasn’t practical or achievable. I had to remind myself that I’m not trying to mimic public school even in how I lesson plan. The overflowing amount of digitally planned lessons, which no child could possibly complete, only made me feel more behind instead of going at my family’s pace.
I learned another valuable point. Writing, while I slowly lingered over deciding which activity to do for the day reined in my tendency to over plan. Instead of conforming to a digital format laid out for a variety of circumstances, I created a unique curriculum planner that would fit my present circumstances.
It’s hard to beat an individualized planner, which allows you to lay it out almost perfect for your unique circumstances. No program can fit exactly what you want, but hand-picked pages in a paper planner can.
For a hands-on and visual teacher, it is a very satisfying feeling to be able cross off a list, hold a tangible item and highlight what she finds important.
What is the Secret to Timeless Homeschooling?
Each year, I have created my own planner cover and personalized it, my own lesson planning pages, my own objectives form and a place for a scope and sequence, which turned into the 7 Step Homeschool Planner.
Too, I just can’t get past the idea that digital planners are a one-size-fits-all type of mentality that I don’t want to be forced into. Your homeschool journey is just as unique as you are and your journey changes each year. Customizing a paper planner to fit your needs makes your planner one of a kind. Your planner then is as unique as your homeschool journey.
Learning balance between the digital and paper world has been the key to timeless homeschooling. Taking the best of what works digitally like getting short-term and long-term reminders on my devices, syncing devices between family members and compact storage along with the creativity and focus sparked by writing in a beautiful paper planner brings the best of both worlds together.