Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Homeschool Buyers Co-op: Homeschool Planet {Schoolhouse Review Crew}

If I haven't told you before, I am a planner. It's almost my favorite part of homeschooling! I like to plan out the entire year...only to watch the plans crumble as the year progresses, usually. I'll also admit that I usually prefer to plan on paper. Enter Homeschool Planet, from the Homeschool Buyers Co-op! It's radically changed my planning methods.

When I logged in the first time, I was able to set up profiles for each member of my family. I entered basic information for each: name, grade (for the boys), email address, with an option to add a cell phone number. There is the option to have an email sent daily, or digest weekly, which includes each individual's assignments, and activities. For my students, there is also an attendance tab. There is also an option for each person to have the ability to log in. You can even upload a profile photo.
I do have ours set up so that Botanist Boy receives daily and weekly emails. Since Little Bit recently turned 13, he now has an email address, as well, so I can have an email sent to him.
Here you can see what the attendance record looks like. 
After creating the profiles for each family member, I started in on the calendar. School assignments can be added, of course. You can also add other activities, such as church related ones, Scouts, homeschool co-op, chores, or appointments. They can be marked for a certain time, or for all day/no specific time.
They can even be color-coded. That makes for a colorful calendar! You can change the themes of the calendar itself, as well: different background colors and images. For now, I am using the purple with horses. Another thing I really like is that I can import my Google calendar, or my Yahoo calendar. I was even able to import the calendar for the bloggers of the SDA Homeschoolers blog with whom I write. Oh, and my birthday calendar has been imported as well.
I like the widgets in the right hand column, as well as along the bottom. You can choose the widget which displays a daily Bible verse, or quote, the local weather, to do list, or shopping list. I like using the shopping list, because then you can email it to yourself (or hubby!), or send it as a text message. It is so handy!
You can create a list of resources, then include those resources when you create your assignments. You can list textbooks, workbooks, even websites. You can also upload your own resources, such as pdfs or word docs now.
What if something comes up, and your student isn't able to complete the day's assignments? There is a handy rescheduling form. You can choose to mark it as complete, or to shift that one day's assignment forward, adding it to the next day's assignment, or shift the assignment forward, as well as shifting all scheduled assignments forward one day.
Another view you can have is a view of the planner, which shows your week or day at a glance. It looks the same as what you would receive via email.

You can also create reports: assignment lists, grades, transcripts, class notes and class hours. There is so much here, so much this program can do; I am still discovering what's here, and learning what it's capable of doing. Check out the thirty-day free trial, to try it out for yourself!

Time sensitive! Currently you can get a free 3-month membership, through Homeschool Giveaways. Offer ends Friday, July 17, at 11:59 pm ET.

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Homeschool Planet Review

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