Unit Study Theory 101 – Class 3

education3Welcome to the third and final class of Unit Study Theory 101.   For today’s class I will be answering the question, “How do you make weekly plans for unit studies?”  However, before we get to that, I’ll explain how my longer term plans are designed.

After years of having a messy planner, (erase marks, comments in the margins, and scribbled out assignments),  I gave up traditional planning and threw the planner away.   It seemed like we hardly ever “stuck” to the plan because life happened, we took advantage of unexpected learning opportunities , or  group activities would consume a day or two.   Sometimes assignments  took longer or went quicker than I expected them to.

Keeping a journal works much better.  I keep my journal in a binder.  The first page is this printable from Teacher Files (I changed the months to match our school year).  I fill in some of the  blanks as we start each month,  the rest gets filled in as it happens.  http://www.teacherfiles.com/downloads/Long%20Range%20Planner.pdf

Making a “possibility” list of topics and the subjects it will include for the current unit study is the next page in my binder.  I add  the start and finish dates as they happen, (or cross out what we didn’t do). The next page is where I record resources.  I print off themed notebooking pages for my journal (usually the same pages I print  for the kids notebooking/journaling assignments).  When the unit study is over, I begin a new possibility list for the next study .  This a simple way to keep track our learning.

I love sticky notes for weekly planning .  Usually  Saturday is the day I make the upcoming weeks plans.  I look over the special days list first to see what  I want to be included in our studies for the upcoming week.  I write that on a sticky note and place on the weekly chart.  Next, I put extra curricular activities on other sticky notes and add those to the chart.  Finally, I make  sticky notes for daily assignments (based off of my “possibility” list) to add to the chart.  At the end of each day, I move the notes to my journal to record later or move the sticky note to the next day if the assignment needs more time.  I found this chart at the $Tree for us to use this school year.  In the past, I made my own weekly charts on poster board.


Fridays are left blank on the planner.  This is the day to catch up on any uncompleted assignments or free study and group activities.

Other related posts :

The first class of Unit Study  101, click here  https://stilllearningsomethingnew.com/2013/07/22/unit-study-theory-101/

The second class of Unit Study 101   https://stilllearningsomethingnew.com/2013/07/25/unit-study-theory-101-class-2/

Listing of special days in August   https://stilllearningsomethingnew.com/2013/07/29/special-days-in-august/

About our homeschool Fridays https://stilllearningsomethingnew.com/2013/03/09/the-ifs-of-friday/

If you have questions or comments, please leave them for they may be helpful to others.

Happy planning!

betty jo


10 thoughts on “Unit Study Theory 101 – Class 3

    1. Betty Jo Post author

      Thanks, this was a bit difficult to write. I know how we do school and know it works for us, just putting it into words was tricky. I’m glad you could make sense of it.

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  3. Ann Contreras

    Enjoyed reading all 3 unit study theory. There was a lot of things I wanted to teach my children but felt the curriculum was in the way. And would like to get started. But i do have a question. How do you know what grade level your children are at? And for college how do you do transcripts? And for high school how do you make sure your children are earning the credits they need?
    You do such a wonderful job and pray you be my mentor and help me go in such a way I need to be. Thank you and keep up the good work.

    1. Betty Jo Post author

      I do not test the kids for grade level. For example, since this is Z’s 3rd year of full day education, we call it 3rd grade. As long as he is retaining skills and learning new ones and passing quizzes he’ll be passed to 4th. Same principles apply to the others. If you are wanting to test for grade level, much is available. Let me know, and I’ll get you the links. Transcripts – oh, how I fretted over this w/the oldest! And for no reason, the college was barely interested in them, they were much more concerned w/ his entry exam scores (which were good). http://letshomeschoolhighschool.com/ has some transcript forms that you can print out. But basically I listed all classes with the grades and credit earned. Since we didn’t use text books, I named the classes myself, but picked self explanatory titles. I don’t know if your state requires the same as KY for grad. requirements. KY requires a minimum of 22 to graduate broken down to 3 math, 4 language arts, 4 social studies, 3 science, 2 foreign lang., 0.5health, 0.5 PE, 1 arts, 7 electives , and 1 technology . The oldest ended up with 28 credits and my E will finish this year (senior) with 31. I do keep up with hours for the high schoolers: 1 credit = 120 hours. Do you have a FB account? I’d be happy to be “friends” and chat more about these things. Thanks for visiting the blog and posting your questions. I’m hoping to talk w/you again.

      1. aslmom

        Hi. Yes I do. My fb is Sy Hugo Contreras. Have more to ask but will wait. Time to get my kids ready for bed.
        Hold for now.

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