A Little Pop of Color Makes the Planning Go Down!

I couldn’t help but think of Mary Poppins when I looked at my planner as it started to come together.  She always had a way of making everything magical and exciting.  Even cleaning bedrooms and brushing the flue was a field day when Marry Poppins was around!  Song breaks out and everyone knows the words to these spontaneous jingles…Just a spoon full of sugar, or color, makes the medicine, or planning go down!  When I gazed at my planner and saw the colors blaring, I smiled with excitement of getting to check each little pretty square off.  Done.  Completed.  Homeschooling.  *Happy Dance!*

So here it is, and here’s how I did it!  I actually found a really cute blog of a teach who gave in and made a “Post-It Note Planbook.”  At first glance I thought, “Whoa, that’s way to complicated and detailed for me.  All I want is a printable page that I can fit BOTH boy’s plans on.”  Then I started looking closer and thinking about how I could make it work for my situation.

Here’s a snapshot of what her plan book looked like:

This is what Victoria over at Wise and Witty Teacher did for her planbook! Beautiful isn't it?

This is what Victoria over at Wise and Witty Teacher did for her planbook! Beautiful isn’t it?  See link above to visit her blog!

To get started, here’s the supplies you’ll need:

  • College Rule Notebook
  • 2 Black Sharpie (1 fine point, 1 standard tip)
  • Full sized Post-It Notes
  • 2-4 packages of 1 3/8 x 1 7/8in post it notes
  • Paper Cutter
  • Ruler

First I took a notebook that I purchased originally for my kids to use and started to play with placement.  It was clear from the start that using full sized Post-It Notes weren’t going to work for the whole planbook for me.  I decided to cut the Post-Its in half.  Still to wide for the lesson section but perfect for the top labels.  Each of the top end slots were smaller than those sections of Post-Its so I cut those down further to use in the day column.  That’s when I decided to pull out the left over Post-It Notes from the daily schedule my husband requested I put together.  Even those were too big so I cut those in half horizontally, sticky side to the left and they were perfect!  I could then fit two in each spot, side by side, that Victoria used.  As I laid them out, I marked with a pencil where each post it note came to then went back and used my ruler to draw lines with a standard tip Sharpie marker.

Once I confirmed that I could fit two horizontally halved mini Post-It Notes in each section, I drew in the lines with a standard tip Sharpie.

Once I confirmed that I could fit two horizontally halved mini Post-It Notes in each section, I drew in the lines with a standard tip Sharpie.

As you can see, I decided to run my days along the left side and my subjects along the top.  In the far left corner, I use that to count the week of school, complete with the month and dates of that week.  I kept her “Other” column.  I think that’ll work very well.  I use History and Science  to pull art, literature, penmanship and other lessons for.  Those lessons will go in the…wait for it, wait for it….”Other” column!  I ended up with five subjects total, two columns for each subject (minus spelling).

My next question was, how do I remember who’s lessons are on the left, who’s are on the right in each column.  That’s a tricky situation considering they are using all the same curriculum except for Math.  I simply level the lessons up to 5th grade or down to 2nd grade to fit their educational needs.  It could be tricky to tell.  All of a sudden I glanced over and noticed I had more than enough Post-It Note colors to give each boy their own color!  Ack!  I was so excited and proud of myself for coming up with that!  It’s the little things in life.  With the days, subjects and such arranged, I realized there was a little spot between the days and the first row of my oldest’s son’s column.  Attendance!  That’s what’s going to go there!  Aaaaaaaand!  There’s room at the bottom for notes!  No need for multiple sections in a binder, or like some people, multiple binders!

Each of my boys have a different color to easily tell one boy's plans from the other, since they are both in the same column.

Each of my boys have a different color to easily tell one boy’s plans from the other, since they are both in the same column.

As I stated before, my boys will be sharing some of the same curriculum: Sequential Spelling, Apologia Science and Story of the World for History.  There are some lessons that will be exactly the same.  I figured, why not save Post-It Notes and Sharpie ink by combining their lessons onto one piece of paper.  Maybe another color!  Yep!  I have enough!

On this page, boy of my boys will have the same Spelling and History lesson.  You can tell that by the centrally located lime green Post-It Note.

On this page, boy of my boys will have the same Spelling and History lesson. You can tell that by the centrally located lime green Post-It Note.

Anywhere there is a lime green Post-It, the boys will be doing the exact same thing!  That makes planning and making a mental note for what the day has for us a snap!  So now let’s look at a page that I have totally and completely finished!

Week 2 planning complete.

Week 2 planning complete.

Week 1 planning complete.

Week 1 planning complete.

So what do you think?  Could you do something like this?  Does this fit your planning style?  I love how fun it looks when I open it.  It gets me excited to dig in (as if I need any help with that!).  It’s so clean and organized too!  I love that I can make mistakes and still have a put together planbook.  I just remove the mistake and put a new Post-It in it’s place with the corrections made!

Cheers,
Andrea

 

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