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Schoolhouse Review: The Ultimate Homeschool Planner by Apologia

Do you love planning? I do. I enjoy sitting with a hot cup of coffee, a stack of the kids’ curricula, a nice fine point, blue pen (yes blue is important because it’s my favorite color) or sharpened pencil, and a planner. Especially a pretty planner like the The Ultimate Homeschool Planner a planning system designed by Debra Bell from Apologia Educational Ministries!
Apologia Educational Ministries Review by Homeschooling6
What I received: The Ultimate Homeschool Planner – Blue ($29.99), also available in a pretty pale yellow and orange.

This planner is not only pretty but packed with 283 pages of goodness. The cover is a pliable plastic so it won’t rip or tear from the rest of the spiral bound book making it a pretty sturdy planner.
If you have half a dozen kids like I do you’ll love that this planner fits up to 6 kiddos!

The first 17 pages include lots of mommy help:

How to use The Ultimate Homeschool Planning System (great tips and ideas within these 4 pages)

Yearly Planning Retreat (shows you how to plan out your year)
Monthly Planning Sessions (even includes scheduling down time)
Weekly Planning Breaks
Monday Morning Tutorials and Friday Afternoon Reviews (encourages to meet with your children)

Once you’ve read the ‘How To’ section you are ready to use the One Year Planning Grid, fill out the Character & Academic Goals page, write your family’s priorities, and lastly the Pre-Planning Guide.

The One Year Planning Grid lets you see at a glance if you are staying on track, need to make changes (so please use pencil in this area, not a pretty blue pen), and just know where you’re at. It’s a two page spread with the months July-June going across the top.
The Ultimate Homeschool Planner
For me, the planning grid was a bit overwhelming so instead I only marked vacation days and winter/summer breaks.

Also included are blank monthly pages. I love all the space. I don’t have to write super small.
The Ultimate Homeschool Planner
Before the Week of pages are your ‘Battle Plan’ pages. Now how many planners do you have that encouraged mom to write their Battle Plan Verse?!?!
The Ultimate Homeschool Planner
Again, I love all the space that this planner provides. Pages 50-257 which is over 200 pages for your scheduling pleasure (wink)!
The Ultimate Homeschool Planner
In the back of the planner there is a section to record grades, pages to record what your child has read and field trips or outside activities, high school planning guide, and teaching tips.
The Ultimate Homeschool Planner
As you can see this almost 300 page planner is chalk full of encouragement, tips, and pretty too. So much more than just a planner and I don’t think I’ve mentioned that there are scripture verses sprinkled throughout the planner too.

Using The Ultimate Homeschool Planner: I will admit I was a bit overwhelmed at first but once I sat down and realized that this is my planner and to make it my own (and of course put some relaxing classical music on) I was fine.
The Ultimate Homeschool Planner
Once I read the introduction and How to pages I went to work with scheduling our year. I didn’t fill in the days of the month. Instead I just chunked out the weeks in pencil that I thought we’d take off. As much as I like using my pen (because of the smoothness) I didn’t use it for the One Year Planning Grid.

Next I went to work with the monthly and weekly planning. It’s great to have everything in one place right down to what read aloud books we’ll be using.

Now I open my planner and see what appointments I have which is great to remind my hubby that next week we’ll be seeing the dentist. No more telling him a few days before.

There are sections that I don’t see myself using like the grading pages and the Reading List for the kids but I do appreciate that they are there just in case I change my mind.

Final thoughts: if you’re like me and prefer using pen and paper to schedule out your days instead of the computer than this just might be the planner for you. If you don’t have 6 kiddos than that leaves even more room to write what you want to accomplish.

It really is a beautiful planner.
The Ultimate Homeschool Planner
If you have time, please click on the banner below to read what my Crew Mates have to say about this awesome planner!
Exploring Creation Field Trip Journal Review
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