Unschooling, Strewing and Unplanning

The other night I turned off my computer for the day, and settled down with my family to watch a movie… at least I tried to watch. My mind kept straying from Beauty and the Beast to Evernote. Then just as the beast demanded Belle join him for dinner, I had this ‘great’ idea’. Great? I don’t know what you’ll think of it, but it made me feel excited. I couldn’t wait to try it out. I reached for my computer, turned it on again and began experimenting.

So what is this fabulous idea? It’s all to do with unschooling planning. Unschooling planning? Yes, I know: Those two words don’t belong together. I don’t actually plan what my girls do each day. They just follow their interests and one thing leads to another… Learning is a wonderful adventure. But there are times when planning is required.

Whenever we apply to reregister as homeschoolers, I have to provide the education authorities with a learning program for my children, that covers the school syllabus. So how do I provide such a plan when we don’t actually know what we’ll be doing from one week to another? That’s where Evernote comes in. I thought of a way I can use Evernote to write a plan (I could call it an unplan!) which can be used for registration purposes, as well as be useful for us.

Now this is only an idea. I haven’t actually used it for homeschool registration so I don’t know if it will be acceptable. But I have used it with my girls and they like it.

I still haven’t told you how my idea works. I could just write about it but I thought it would be easier to explain my idea in a video. So that’s what I’ve done. I spent yesterday afternoon making another screencast tutorial. Shall I admit my tongue got into a twist so often it took me an awfully long time to record just what I wanted to say? I think I got there in the end, but it’s certainly not the best video ever!

In the video I chat about unschooling, strewing, unplanning, registration and Evernote, as I show you my idea in action. As usual, time flew by and the minutes mounted up. I considered chopping out some of the video. But in the end, I just left it as it is. Please feel free to fast forward if it gets boring!

Thank you to anyone who takes the time to watch my video. And please stop by and share any ideas of your own.

So onto the video…
Evernote 5: Unschooling, Strewing and Unplanning

Since writing this post, we’ve had a homeschool registration visit. The Authorised Person who came to see us was very impressed with my Evernote records. She liked my unplanning notebook. This idea worked!

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  1. Reply

    Hi Sue
    You have some really good ideas, thank you.
    God bless

    1. Reply


      Thank you for your encouraging comment. So kind of you to stop by!

  2. Reply

    Hi Sue,

    I have really enjoyed learning about the way you use Evernote in your homeschool. I am a sporadic Evernote user and eventually will move to paper (I think better that way) but you've got great ideas about how to organize all that unschooling goodness your girls are learning!

    All the best!


    1. Reply


      'Unschooling goodness'… that's a lovely way to describe all those learning experiences. I like that!

      I like paper sometimes too. Usually I use a real notebook to jot down ideas on the go. I have a number of them… in my bag, on my desk, by my bed. Paper is good too!

      Thank you so much for your comment!

    2. Reply

      Hi Sue,

      I also use a notebook to track our daily "goodness." I don't like to have to boot up the computer every time inspiration hits for new ideas. In regards to Evernote, do you log in your notebook then upload to Evernote? I was thinking this would be a good way for me to be able to organize myself.

      Your idea to use Evernote as a strewing resource is genius!!! I've been playing around with it and I can see how this would work for our family too.

      Thanks for sharing!


    3. Reply


      I usually use my hand written notebooks for blog post and other writing ideas and anything else I want to remember, but I try to do the homeschool records straight to the computer to save time. I keep my laptop turned on all day and open it whenever I want to record something. I used to think it was easier to have a notebook on the arm of a chair for written notes. I could grab the notebook quickly…except when it got misplaced, and sometimes I couldn't find my pen. So far I haven't lost my computer! I don't think it really matters what system we use as long as it works for us. Evernote will only work if we find an effective way to add notes on a regular basis.

      I am so glad you can use the strewing idea. I keep thinking of new resources to add. It's fun to share ideas!

  3. Reply

    I really like this way of planning. I do something similar using my blog (draft posts) to record links and books etc. I then copy and paste it into an email to my children. Evernote looks a much better option and would be perfect for the way we homeschool (project based schooling). Thank you for sharing, you have a lovely melodic voice which is very easy to listen to!!

    1. Reply

      I have also sent my children links via email. And using a blog is a great idea too. I think you would like Evernote as well! Thank you so much for your kind words about my voice. When I listen to my videos I find myself very annoying. It's good to know I don't sound so bad to other people! I appreciate your comment. Thank you for stopping by!

  4. Reply

    Strewing sounds like something, the Owlets and I could find pleasure in. I like listening to your viedeos.

    1. Reply


      You and the owlets are true unschoolers! Unschooling has nothing to do with school really. It's just about loving learning and enjoying life. You do that all the time. I think it's very kind of you to watch my videos. Thank you!

  5. Reply

    Hi Sue,

    Well I'm late to the Evernote party but have been reading and watching all that you've done! Brilliant, just brilliant! Thank you for taking the time to post it. Have you guys seen http://thekidshouldseethis.com/ it's my go to strew…honestly I get lost for hours! 😉

    1. Reply

      Sprocket & Bliss,

      You are never too late for Evernote. The party continues! I love Evernote as you've probably gathered. I keep thinking of new ways to use it. I'm so glad you like it too. I had a look at 'the kids should see this' website. I think I'm going to get lost for hours too! Thanks so much for sharing the link and also for stopping by to say hello!

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