Are you looking for an online homeschool planner that makes your life easier? Homeschool Planet is an online planning system for homeschoolers that is designed to be flexible, customizable, and easy to use.
Here are the highlights:
- Manage all your work, homemaking, homeschooling, and more
- Set up classes and lesson plans for all the kids (they even have pre-made plans from popular curricula you can plug in)
- Manage workflow with ease, including assigning lessons, rescheduling, grading, communications, etc.
- Tracking and reporting features that help you stay on track and create a record (you can even create a transcript!)
- And much more!
Now I know why they called it Homeschool Planet. Because it’s epic! 🙌
8 Fantastic Features in Homeschool Planet
It would be difficult to explain all of the features of Homeschool Planet well in one blog post. There’s a LOT in there, you guys. I highly recommend signing up for their 30-day free trial and playing with it yourself, perhaps watching some of the tutorials to get started.)
However, because it’s what I always recommend to those looking for an online planner, I wanted to share some of the main features that stand out to me and give you my honest opinion about it.
Every year when I do homeschool planning, I start with a year-at-a-glance calendar to decide when start, stop, and check-in days are, when we’ll take time off, etc. It’s something I suggest you do as well when you start the year. I was pleased to see that Homeschool Planet helps you do that easily.
- Choose from semesters, quarters, etc., and even set the start dates for each one.
- Set which days you homeschool (We do Tuesday through Saturday)
- Choose which holidays to include in the calendar and block off known breaks.
The main calendar view is very helpful as well and will likely be your main working area every day in Homeschool Planet. You can view all student tasks or filter by certain students.
You can also view the calendar in days, weeks, or months, or view it as a scrolling list with checkboxes (in the Planner view). It even allows optional integration with Google, iCal, or any other standard web-based calendar!
There is so much flexibility in Homeschool Planet when it comes to lesson planning. You can create classes with detailed lesson plans (page numbers, etc.) or create lesson plans that assign types of work each day (read, narrate, maps, timeline, etc.). Whatever works for you!
Here are some other things you can do:
- Add assignments, field trips, appointments, PDFs, links, and more to lessons.
- Automatically assign lessons to your specified schedule and add reminders if desired.
- Color code by student, class, activity, category, and subject.
- Search classes, assignments, etc. by keyword.
The different ways you can set up a class lesson plan are pretty amazing. You can have it automatically fill in lessons based on your specifications and then go in and tweak each one at a more granular level if you want.
For example, I had two of my kids doing a curriculum together, but only one of the kids did all the assignments for that class. The other child just did the reading. I was able to easily set that up in Homeschool Planet!
Lesson Plan Marketplace
I wasn’t sure I’d care much about this feature, but after trying it out, I’m sold. The Lesson Plan Marketplace has over 2500 pre-made lesson plan plugins for popular homeschool curricula and they’re always adding more!
For a reasonable fee, you can purchase them and import them into your planner. The lessons will populate your planner once you set which days they’ll work in that class.
It is fantastic to be able to import lesson plans in just a click of a button. Then you can go tweak it however you want! Saves a ton of time and effort, especially for the lesson plans where you want details specified, like page numbers. You can also choose to use their suggested lesson frequency and grading if it’s available.
After you get your classes and lesson plans all set up, there are several features in Homeschool Planet to help you manage your work, assign tasks to others, and communicate with family members.
- Set reminders to notify people when assignments are due
- Daily or weekly digests can send them the week’s assignments
- Text your lists and messages to your students or other family members
- Your child can use their laptop or mobile device to see the day’s work and mark it off as they go
- Check progress as your students complete their work
- Have students track hours spent in the class each day or week, if needed
For younger children, those who do not have device access, or those who just prefer printed versions, you can print off their lesson plan for the day or week and they can work through them manually.
One thing I HATE about most paper planners is that I always feel like I’m erasing and re-writing things when the day doesn’t go as planned. Let’s face it… that happens a lot. Too often I just bail on the whole thing entirely.
One wonderful feature of Homeschool Planet is that it helps you reschedule assignments when needed and it’s EASY!
- You can drag and drop assignments in the calendar to quickly rearrange things.
- If needed, Homeschool Planet will prompt you and ask you what to do with missed assignments (screenshot below), or you can set it up to handle those automatically.
Look at the options they give you. It’s so helpful for handling those missed assignments and moving on with your day.
We don’t do grading in our homeschool until 9th grade. But guess what? My oldest is going into 9th grade and until recently I had NO idea how to do high school grading. Homeschool Planet makes that easy, too.
- Helps you define the categories and percentage of the final grade for the class (e.g. Homework 20%, Tests 40%, Projects 40%, etc.)
- View current grade based on graded assignments, and the final grade is calculated for you
- Lets you group classes for a grade, such as grouping Spelling, Literature, and Composition into a Language Arts grade.
- Grading helper shows you any missing grades.
Tracking & Reporting
There are several tracking and reporting options. Here are the ones I’d use the most:
- Incomplete assignment lists
- Tracking books and resources
- For high school, a report of hours tracked for classes where we are counting hours to determine credits
- Transcript builder for high school
Things That Made Me Say “Wow!”
- It’s a really extensive program, yet it’s easy to just jump in and start.
- The depth of features is remarkable. It’s worth spending time as you go to learn them all, watch the videos, play with things, etc.
- The Lesson Plan Marketplace is so valuable. If you want detailed lesson plans and they have a plan for your curriculum, it’s worth every penny to buy it and pre-fill it.
- As I head into the high school years, the transcript is something new to us. I love that Homeschool Planet provides tools for that.
- I’m amazed you get all of this for such a reasonable annual price.
- I can do loop scheduling! 🙌 This is a big part of how we do things, so I was stoked to figure out how to do it in HP.
- When you set up a class, click on the “More options” link
- Choose “My assignments follow a recurring pattern”
- Set which days you want to schedule the loop and it will rotate through it for you
- Add your tasks to the to-do list (as you can see below, I put 5 items on my oldest son’s loop schedule)
- If you want, each week you can edit the details for the looping items, such as specifying specific lessons/pages
Downsides to Homeschool Planet
Every planner has pros and cons. Here are some downsides I could see:
- If you don’t need/want detailed lesson plans or don’t do lesson plans at all, Homeschool Planet might be more than you need. (I would try it anyway and see. It could still help you with more general planning as well as moving into more accountability for work assigned to your high schoolers.)
- Although I found several curricula I use in the Lesson Plan Marketplace, some of my favorites are missing. Of course, I can build them myself, and they are always adding more.
- Their mobile view is pretty good, certainly for students needing to view and check off work, or for when I want a quick look at progress. But not all the features are available on mobile. An app would be a great addition.
- Even though it’s easy to jump in and start, it will still take you quite a bit of time to really explore the features, watch the tutorials, etc. I do recommend doing that in order to make the most of the program. But it will take perseverance if you’re a busy mom with a very short attention span, like me. 😆
Bottom Line on Homeschool Planet
Homeschool Planet gets an A+ in my book!
I would definitely recommend signing up for the free trial and seeing if it would work for you. Especially if you:
- Like detailed lesson plans but want it to be easier
- Are hoping for more structure in your homeschool planning and tracking
- Want to set up a workflow with your kids
- Would like ALL your work (home, homeschool, etc.) in one planner
- Are heading into the high school years
Learn More & Sign Up for a FREE 30-Day Trial!
Get started with Homeschool Planet by signing up for the FREE 30-day trial!
- Get all the features of the planner during the trial
- No credit card required
- Get a FREE lesson plan to import, too!
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