Thursday, August 2, 2012

2012-2013 School Planning: Planning to Plan

Thank you 'berry' much for trading planning time for time with me!
August is upon us, which mean the traditional academic year is just around the corner.

Oh my!  That mean this homeschooling mama must get her thoughts and plans in order.  Good thing two of my "students" are asleep right now and one (my sleepless one!) is happily listening to an audiobook, so that I begin to do just that.

As I do, I must admit that I miss the full days of child-free planning time I had a classroom teacher.  This post-kiddo-bedtime thing just does not work as well for me. I like to do my planning in large chunks of time without interruption.  Doing so at this hour just causes me to stay up too late and, consequently, to be a less-than-stellar mom in the morning... So, it seems I have only one choice:  change my habits.  Stop wishing for what isn't.  Learn to plan in lesser chunks of time.  Love the present for what it is.

This choice is not such a bad one.  In fact, I can easily stop wishing for traditional teacher planning time.  That would mean going in for an in-service and missing the learning and lulls that my children and I have been experiencing together all summer.  No, thank you!  The importance of each minute we spend together far outweighs the need for me to hole up somewhere sans children for hours of academic year planning. I would not trade berry picking, beach time, picnics in the yard, playdates, free concerts by the sea... or even just hanging at home together for required planning time.

Unfortunately, it does not completely erase my need to look ahead toward autumn. My brain just cannot ignore the fact that I changed the calendar page the other day.  In fact, I am having a difficult time being fully present with the kiddoes as the words of a poster I once saw echo in my mind: prior planning prevents poor performance. 

If I do not get to delineating a few frameworks and deciding upon some key resources and tools for the 2012-2013, neither the children nor I are likely to achieve very much in the coming year. Honoring our true north as we continue the homeschool journey we initiated some years ago will be that much easier if we bundle helpful gear into our packs for the year. So, what to do?

  • Honor the hours of these summer days when I can be present with my children without being distracted by an excess of work and appointments.
  • Remain ready to take advantage of ten minutes here or fifteen minutes there to ready some of our supplies for the year.
  • Once the kiddoes are asleep, utilize longer stretches of time to reflect upon the past year and prepare for the coming one without doing so for so long that I see the night begin to turn to dawn.
In other words, plan in baby steps. For as the old saying goes, a journey of a thousand miles starts with one step. So, too, the planning of a rich school year can be done in small increments.  At least, I hope so!

How do you approach homeschool planning?  Or, if you are not a homeschooler, how do you approach planning for the fall in general?

Note: It would appear that as I have been taking my planning in bits, I have sharing it that way as well.  The other portions of our planning to date can be found by scrolling through School Planning 2012-2013.


Gina said...

So glad to have found your blog! I am looking forward to homeschooling my son after teaching elementary school prior to his adoption. I love the way you are approaching this in the present, being grateful for the moments that you have at home. I, too, miss preparing for my classroom full of students, but I'm looking forward to having my son to teach over the years. :)

Julie said...

Feeling the planning bug, like you! I have to plan in big chunks otherwise I forget what I'm going or things end up less than cohesive.
My kids are 9, 11, 14 and they LOVE to hang out with on Sunday afternoons while they head to the garage to putter around, I hole up inside, in the silence, and plan away!
Other times, I will write a 'planning plan' and list on a calendar a few things each day that I want to review, look into, etc.

martianne said...


I use my kids-are-with-Daddy time to try to unbury our house! One day, that task will be done and I can savor long stretches of planning time. :)

Funny that you mention planning plan on a calendar. I have been doing that this week!

Thanks for responding. I didn't see a way to click your name to lead me to your user profile or blog, so I cannot click over to leave this reply there. Sorry!

Martianne said...


Thanks for sharing. Best wishes as you start on your journey with your son! May it be fruitful and blessed.


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