Thursday, June 6, 2019

Hey Mama! Homeschool Planner {review}

It's that time of the year again. As the formal homeschool year winds down, I'm already thinking about next year. I can't shut my mind off when it comes to homeschooling. If I'm not actively homeschooling, I'm reading, researching, and planning. Luckily, we were given the opportunity to review the new Hey, Mama! Homeschool Planner for 2019/20 Year. Published by The Old Schoolhouse® and written by Gena Suarez, this is a great planner for a variety of moms!

Hey Mama! Planner

This is a simple, but gorgeous planner designed for an average homeschool family (of up to 5 students) following a traditional school calendar.

It includes a "year at a glance" calendar for 2019, 2020 and 2021, followed by twelve sets of devotionals, monthly note pages, and monthly calendars. These run from July 2019 to June 2020. This accommodates a summer or fall start the best, because even those who start their formal academic year in August or September typically count all the educational activities and experiences (camps, VBS, family trips) that happen during the summer.

While the notes page and calendar are a great place to write down monthly goals, objectives and appointments, the Hey Mama! devotional from Gena Suarez shares encouragement, verses and gentle reminders for the homeschool mama's heart!

Hey Mama! Planner

Following the monthly calendars, you will find the core planner pages. The weekly pages are undated, which is nice, because if you take a week off for break, you can pick back up without "losing" space in your planner. The five columns are labeled Child 1, Child 2 . . . Child 5.  You could choose to write their names underneath.  The seven rows are all blank, so you can label by subject or book, or day of the week, or however you choose.  I only have four children, and only three will be formal school age next year, so I could use at least one of the Child columns for Family Subjects like nature study, picture study, folk songs, etc.

Hey Mama! Planner

Although the very front of the planner has a transcript form, most of the planning and record-keeping forms are in the back of the planner.  Enough forms for five children, each set of forms starts with a lined page for your own notes/thoughts, a Curriculum Planning page, attendance form, Books Read This Year, Yearly Goals, First Semester Goals, and Second Semester Goals.  The goal pages go beyond educational goals--they include spiritual, life skills, financial and more! This allows you to really think about your child as a whole person and what their future may look like. The separate goal pages are great for allowing you to assess progress mid-year.  An older student should be involved in setting and assessing goals, so this is a great way to teach them how to prioritize and reassess as necessary!

For the unschooling/relaxed homeschool family, you may just choose to write down what you did after the fact as a form of record-keeping. The planner is flexible and can be used however suits your needs. Larger families will probably find it hard to personalize, as will those who start in January or other non-traditional months, since the planner is dated. Otherwise, I think it can be personalized to many homeschooling situations.

Homeschooling comes with a lot of planning and record-keeping.  Depending on the level of record-keeping required in your state, the planner can be used as part of your legal documentation, as a supplement to a portfolio assessment, or just for your own records. Some moms need a planner to keep them on track, and some just like jotting down notes afterwards for their own satisfaction. However you need to use it is up to you, but the Hey Mama! planner can help with a variety of situations!

As of now, they have sold approximately 98% of the print planners, and will not be printing more once they are sold out, so if you are interested, now is the time to buy one!

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