I have an unplanning notebook. It’s filled with all kinds of interesting resources. Whenever my girls are looking for something to do, I say, “Why don’t you take a look in the unplanning notebook? I put some new things in there the other day.”
An unplanning notebook can be a simple exercise book filled with handwritten notes. But mine’s an Evernote notebook. I like using Evernote because I can clip articles and images and links directly into it from the Internet. It’s easy to follow those links straight back to the original source which is very useful when we want to watch a video or visit a website or buy a book.
My unplanning notebook has more than one use. It’s good for strewing, but it’s also useful for homeschool record-keeping purposes. If we want to be legally registered as homeschoolers, I have to provide the education department with a detailed plan of what I intend to ‘teach’ my children over the next couple of years. How do I write such a plan when I don’t know what my girls will be learning from week to week? Do I write a plan I know we’ll never use? Or will my unplanning notebook satisfy the education department?
A couple of years ago, I started keeping an unplanning notebook, and when our Authorised Person (AP) came to visit us at registration time, I presented her with it. (I told her it was our ‘planning notebook’. She wouldn’t have understood what an unplanning notebook is!) There were hundreds of notes in my notebook covering all the Key Learning Areas of the school syllabus.
“These are the resources we’ll be using,” I said. “We’ll be dipping into this notebook for the next two years.”
Was our AP happy with my unplanning notebook? Oh yes, she was!
But what if my girls aren’t interested in any of the resources in that notebook? Do I have to insist they use them because I told our AP that this is our plan for the next registration period? No. I have provided them with the opportunity to learn what is required by the education department. That’s all I have to do.
I talk about unplanning notebooks, strewing, and record-keeping in this week’s video, Unplanning Notebooks for Strewing and Unschool Record-Keeping. I expand on the details I have shared in this post. I hope you’ll watch!
You might also like to watch my video Unschooling, Strewing, and Unplanning
As I said in this week’s video, please watch this old video with a non-critical eye!