Sunday, January 18, 2015

Homeschool Planet - Home and School Mosaics Review

Homeschool Planet - an online planner that's out of this world!

Visit Homeschool Planet here.  To find out the latest about Homeschool Planet visit them on Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube

Over at Home and School Mosaics I was given the opportunity to use Homeschool Planet free for a time to provide this review.  I am not obligated to provide a positive review.  I did not and will not receive further compensation for this review.  All thoughts and opinions are my own.

Like many of my readers I'm always looking for a way to be better organized.   I've tried different planners, schedules, and calendars over the years, and I was was very interested in trying Homeschool Planet to see if it was just another planner or perhaps the best planning system I've ever used.   Here's what I found.

Check out all of the features and things you can do with this online planner:
  • Customize your planner with your own e-mail, school information, school year and vacation dates and chosen holidays.  
  • Plan all of  the lessons, homework, projects, quizzes, tests and other items for your kids all in one place.  
  • Pick your favorite colorful theme to make your calendar/planner fit your personality and add customizable widgets to add more features.

Homeschool Planet also allows you to compile a number of Reports to have ready access to summaries of a number of handy details.  Here are the available report options:

  • Assignment Lists
  • Class Notes
  • Grade Reports
  • Class Hours
  • Transcripts  

One of my favorite features is the ability to print in Economy mode since I'm an ink saver.   Of course, I really like the look of the calendar, planner and more printed in Color Print mode.  

  • You'll find a Calendar view which shows one person or everyone at one time and a Planner view with a list of everything to be done.  Each person and activity can even be color-coded, and font size is adjustable for easy reading.  

  • An Automatic Rescheduling feature allows you to move assignments when days are missed or cancelled. 
  • Separate log-ins can be set for each child with assignments to check off.  

  • Daily Digest emails to each person on the planner can be scheduled for another reminder of assignments and activities. 
  • Lesson plans can be entered which may include assignments, web links, and notes.  
  • Attendance and Grading can be tracked and Transcripts created.  
  • Family To Do Lists and Shopping Lists can be generated.  Why not send that shopping list to your spouse's phone?  
  • Widgets are also available to add a search feature, quotes, and text message capabilities. 
  • You can view and edit your calendars on phones and tablets with the Mobile version.  

You can even view Google Calendar, Apple iCal and other online calendars inside Homeschool Planet or view Homeschool Planet in those applications.  

Best planner or back to the old ways?
I really like all of the personalization options this planner offers.  If I'm going to spend time with something online it might as well be something with a pleasant appearance.  Of course, I had to choose one of the purple options.  The calendar and planner features are great.  I have no doubt that this is a fabulous option for many homeschool families, but it wasn't quite what we need at this time.  I love all the different ways that it can be used, but we don't really follow specific lesson plans or focus on grading in our homeschool.  We have a fairly relaxed schedule most of the time.  I do keep track of a number of things on a calendar or planner, but I found that a number of the features available were not things that we would use.   I will very likely continue to use the calendar/planner parts of the program to keep things more organized.  Since we are rural and have limited options for internet connections, the plan we are using for wifi is one which is charged by the data used.  Therefore, we do try to avoid extra applications and online games which eat up our monthly allotted data.  Day-to-day use of this planner might also be an issue for us for that reason.  I'm thinking that weekly and monthly use of the Homeschool Planet calendar/planner will be more likely for us, but if we had several kids to plan around and a tighter schedule I would definitely be using this. Bottom line --excellent program!  I really appreciated the time, effort, and service provided by the folks at Homeschool Planet.

Requirements to use the online calendar/planner:
The only requirements to use the program are a web browser and a broadband Internet connection.  If you have access to high-speed internet on a fairly current browser you'll be able to use this planner.  It's fairly simple and quick to set up.  Why not sign up to try this online planner free for 30 days by clicking here?

Pricing Options:
There are a couple of payment options which include $65 for a 1 year subscription or a month-to-month option which costs $6.95 monthly.

Just a few more things:

  • If you set up a 30-day trial and then want to continue there will be 365 days added to your account when you pay for your subscription.
  • You are able to access your subscription within 15 minutes after confirming your order.  
  • Oh, by the way, that information you entered during your trial period will be saved so you can continue to use it.  
  • If you change your mind within 30 days you will receive a refund for the purchase price.

What about your sensitive personal information?  The folks at Homeschool Planet encrypt your personal information and perform nightly backups of all of your information to keep you protected.  Voila--peace of mind!

Stop by Home and School Mosaics to see what the rest of the team thought by clicking here.

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