I have never been good at planning. I can never seem to get all of the readings, assignments and extras down on paper in an organized, make sense kind of manner. I do better with mental plans. I can organize the world and it’s many facets all in my head but you ask me to put it on paper and I transform into a confused mess.
I realized last year, in Emma’s grade 9 year, that I had to change some things, for her sake and mine. Things weren’t running that smoothly and I didn’t have a clue as to what she was doing–or what I was doing, for that matter. I didn’t have assignments properly planned out, I just gave them to her wiggly niggly whenever I thought it would be a good time for her to do something. I just pulled out an assignment out of my mental planning hat and then go on my way.
I can’t be doing that for her grade 10 year, the years of college transcripts–at least I don’t think I can. I need to be more organized. Actually, my brain is pleading for me to be more organized. It is getting a bit crowded up there at this moment. The thought of cramming even more up there, especially on a regular basis, makes me cringe. I (it) needs a break.
That, then, leads me to the second dilemma: How do I plan the year? Do I do it in microcosm bits that determines every little piece of our year? Or do I wing it only on paper? Do I do it as I have attempted in other years? The cave-man method, on paper? Or do I brave the new electronic world and attempt to master planning with the computer? So many questions and each question brings it’s own set of fears and headaches.
I started out doing this on paper, like I usually do, then I converted to the computer. Gasp! I know, scary, isn’t it?
I really have no idea what I am doing. I have no idea if this is going to work. I have no idea if the kids and I are even going to be able to use it. All I know is that it looks pretty. The basis of every good plan.
I was perusing The Well-Trained Mind forums on the weekend and came upon a few posts about planning with OneNote Now, I had known about EverNote but every time I read about how to actually set it all up I broke into a nasty case of hives. But OneNote didn’t seem to do that for me. What was even better was that my handy dandy new computer, the one that I only use for internet use, actually has OneNote installed in it. Wahoo!
So I printed off the threads from the WTM forum and went to work to figure this all out. It wasn’t that hard. I have some pretty pages made up just begging to be used.
So far I have a notebook for me, Emma and Caleb. Tessa doesn’t really need a notebook yet because I am still able to keep her plans in my head. My notebook has pages for history, Emma, Caleb, Home Ec, Health (or the politically correct term, wellness. Wellness? Who thinks up these terms anyway?) and our daily schedule. In order for it to be a respectable notebook I should put in some more notepages but I can’t think of any right at the moment. I am sure it will evolve as time moves on.
So that is what I am doing right now; playing with my notebook, shuffling around the notepages and seeing how pretty I can get them.
Funny thing, though, this electronic planning hasn’t lessened the stuff in my brain. It is still as full as it was before.