Thursday, April 11, 2013

Apologia Ultimate Planner~review

I was given the opportunity to use and review several of Apologia's planner.  I received The Ultimate Homeschool Planner ($28.00), The Ultimate Weekly Planner for Teens ($19.00), and The Ultimate Daily Planner for Students ($19.00) all designed by Debra Bell.

Now in all fairness I have a different homeschool planner that I use and like.  I have been using it for several years and it is very hard to teach this ::ahem:: pushing forty dog new tricks.  That said I have been intrigued by the Apologia line of planners for some time and it was a great opportunity to look them over.
•Durable, yet flexible plastic covers (mom planner has folder pockets inside front and back cover)
•Year at a glance all the way up through 2016!  I don't even want to think that far in advance but it is nice to see it.
•Bright engaging colors
•study aids in the student planners
•open ended calendars (no big deal if you take a week off you don't waste a page)
•reading lists for the college bound

To highlight some of the above points with more detail.  The plastic covers are perfect at protecting the planners from coffee cup rings.  All three planners are spiral bound and these durable covers help keep the interior pages protected from squishing in back packs or shuffling in piles.
The study aids in the student planners are awesome.  Plenty of informational tips on how to study, use the planner and be successful.  I noticed in the student planner there is even a log for the Presidential Active Lifestyle Award.  In the teen planner there is a very well laid out high school section.  College admissions timelines, high school checklist, and reading list.  Over 25 pages of study tips!

I handed the teen planner over to my teen...the first one complained that there was not enough space each day to jot down what she needed to do.  I have to agree with her as the student planner are half the size of the mom planner.  She did like the time on task wheels and felt it helped her stay on track to see how much time she was actually spending doing her assignments.  The second teen I handed it to felt it was reinventing the wheel because the curriculum she uses all ready is set up planner style.  So not a huge hit with my teens.  I could see how it would be very practical for a teen in a traditional school setting or with co-op classes.

I entered a week for my ten year old in the planner and sent him off.  He really wasn't interested either! He has very little free work that I am not sitting with or near him for.  Again that is just our homeschooling style and the planner just made more work for me.  But in a different style homeschool, or a traditional setting I could see how this would be handy.

The big mom planner was nice.  I enjoyed having space for each kid, but again I found there to not be enough space for each days assignments.  Only five lines per day per student was a bit tight for us.  I found myself not writing stuff down because I was out of room.  I absolutely love the fact that these three planners are designed to work together.  Had I started my year fresh when I received them and was able to follow the wonderful yearly planning advice by Debra Bell I may have had a better love for these planners.  Like anything I find that some people like the things I don't and disagree with the things I love. There you have it.  These are great planners but just not my style.

No comments: