As the year draws to a close, it was time for me to set up another Planner for the New Year.
I have tried many types of planners (Yearbook for the HomeKeeper, A Record of the Learning Lifestyle, Make Your Own Brain In A Binder, The Schoolhouse Planner, etc…) and they are really good (from simple and basic to more detailed). BUT they never seem to suit my needs fully. So I gave up and started to design my own.
First I had to decide what exactly I needed and will use. And after going through all those planners, I certainly knew what I needed, what I liked but never used and what was totally not useful to me. Then I got onto Microsoft Word and started designing.
It’s really easy – and fun might I add. Use the free clip art function to design your very own covers and sectional headers. Or print off pictures from your own photo album to personalise it even more! Use coloured paper to make it fancier.
I then laminate the front and back covers (makes it waterproof and smudgeproof!) and bind it all together. Voila! A Planner that no one else has! We own both a laminator and binding machine (basic models bought when Popular bookstore had its storewide 20% sale). But if you don’t own either, you can always visit photocopying shops that’ll do it for you for a small fee.
This is how my Planner is organised. But bear in mind I have only 6 sections or headers versus the multitudes the pre-printed planners usually have :
- Monthly Calendars
- Blog Stuff and
- Health Records
Monthly Calendars :
There are loads that can be printed and downloaded from the net free. I downloaded and customised mine from Free Monthly Calendar or Planner Printable Online. The function of this section was for me to record important events for the year. This is different from the wall calendar that records our usual appointments.
a) Lesson Planners : This is where I have my weekly lesson plans printed and filed so I have a record of what they have done and if I have been faithfully grading their work! Their yearly plans are in a Homeschool File of its own.
b) Homeschool Info : Websites, books, curriculum and other interesting nuggets pertaining to homeschooling are recorded here.
Menu Plans and Chore Lists are in this section.
Actually this is like a miscellanous section. Lol! Things like my goals, books read, wishlist can be found here. And for 2009, my Birth Plan* and Things-To-Do-List-Before-Baby-Gets-here list also goes in here too!
Blog Stuff :
Health Records :
Ah! I am most remiss in this section tho’ I really try hard to keep on top of it! I started this to remember the bouts of illnesses (serious ones) that the children get hit by. Like the recent rotavirus infection the toddler got.
This is also where I am supposed to record major health expenses – eye treatment, orthodontist, chiropractor, etc…But I have yet to be consistent So the records are obviously not up-to-date.
And that’s it. No need to have unused and wasted pages that other families need but we don’t. No need to figure out how to modify pre-printed pages to suit our requirements either.
Just in case you think I am brilliant I test drove the Planner for 6 months before settling on this current format. I tried various combinations : colours/fonts/forms/covers/etc…till I am finally happy with it now.
I strongly recommend having a Planner to get organised. But if you don’t have the energy nor interest in creating a Planner of your own, try checking out the Planners I mentioned or google for more options.
And if you are looking for a Chore Planner (which would go under the Homemaking section) to help you keep on top of the number of stuff you need to do (don’t we all?), you may want to look at Motivated Moms Planner with Scheduled Bible Reading thrown in! Click here to view more details.
Have A Blessed New Year!
* I’ll post my Birth Plan in a few weeks’ time for those who might be interested.
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For my personal musings, visit Building An Ark in Singapore.