There are a few times in the year that I like to regroup. August, at the beginning of the school year; Passover in the Spring, of course being the beginning of the biblical year; and December/ January, the Gregorian new year. These times just seem natural to me and I reevaluate where we are in school and what we need to do better. I "tighten up ship" so to say. This almost always involves me writing goals, schedules and to do lists for everyone in the house.
A good resource for a free planner I have found and use frequently is The Homeschool Mom . She has organizers for appointments, school assignments, lesson planning, record keeping, and family menu planning. This is a good planner for any homeschooler but especially good for an unschooler or an on the go type of schooler because it has pages that are helpful for keeping track of those hands-on educational activities that can be hard to document.
This is just one of many good, free planners out there and as a homeschooler whether you run a tight ship or homeschool on the fly it is important to plan your school year. It is also a good idea to document and keep samples of your children's work. Not only "in case" they are ever needed but more importantly to see how your child is progressing, to have records, for yourself, of what worked and what didn't, to improve and give our children the best education for them and direct them in the direction they are to go.
It is also encouraging in those times when we don't feel like we are accomplishing anything to be able to look back and see how far we and our children have come and how much they have done. Or challenging when we look back and see weak areas where we need to improve.
The Scriptures give us many examples of, and lessons in planning, from Yoseph and the famine, to our simply planning for the Sabbath each week. It is nice to have a plan of what lies ahead but also be flexible to unexpected changes or needs that may arise. It's always a good idea to plan in pencil.
Happy Planning and Happy Homeschooling!
*updated from Nov 28, 2014 post*