Whether you do your yearly planning at “back to homeschool” time or if you plan your year in January it is very important to step back and first look at goals on the big scale. Especially once your students are in high school it is important to keep track of all the comings and goings that happen in your home. Having an academic calendar gives you boundaries and helps keep your students accountable for completing their schoolwork.
Determine Your Planning Calendar
A calendar can be a major tool in helping you keep your goals there for you to see and also to organize yourself to get started.Keep in mind the kind of homeschooler you are all along this process. Do you choose to homeschool year-round? You might even choose to follow the typical public school calendar. Homeschooling brings with it the freedom to plan out your year in a way that works best for your own family.
Steps to a Great Planning Calendar
Create a Course-List
First, consider this-What is each student’s course list for the year? This should include what they need to study to satisfy the yearly requirements for their grade but also it should definitely include some things that they may want to study and learn about. We should encourage their innate desire to learn by making sure they can have some choice in what they learn about. A credit planner like this free one should help with this process.
Create a Practical Plan
With these in mind, you should now be able to build your yearly homeschool calendar and create a plan. There are some planners and calendars made just for homeschooling but your calendar could be as simple as a notebook or three-ring binder. You might also consider an online planner. There are a lot of helpful tools to do this on Google plus. There is really no need to spend a lot of money on it unless you think it could help assist you with your planning and simplify it. This particular one- The Sanity Saver Homeschool Planner has all kinds of tools and resources to simplify the planning for you. Another consideration, now that your students are teens, it might be a good idea for them to have their own planner to keep up with tasks and stay accountable.
Create a Yearly Calendar
Next, it is a good idea to go through your calendar and pencil in any birthdays, holidays, vacations, and special days that you would like to free up. When doing this you need to consider that if your state requires 180 official homeschool days, that you ensure that those days are accounted for and built into your homeschool calendar. Sports are another consideration in planning your schedule. Participation in sports is increasing for homeschooled students-High School Homeschool Athletics Info By State.If your student is planning on attending college do not forget to add to your calendar the dates of future Pre ACT/ACT/SAT tests in your area along with test prep.
At this point, you have either already ordered or are in the process of ordering the curriculum that you plan to use and also the supplies needed for each class. If you still need help deciding on a curriculum our Homeschool High School Curriculum Directory or our Homeschool Curriculum Guides should help! Once you decide which curriculum works for your student it is a good idea to separate the days you have chosen into quarters and create goals for each quarter and then divide the content for each curriculum into four parts.
After looking at it all with a wide view of the whole year it is a good idea to start breaking it all down into-
Monthly goals and activities
Daily- the small steps to achieving long term goals