My children have watched me use planners in my daily life forever, and they’ve seen me design and share planners with others throughout their lives. It shouldn’t have surprised me, then, that they were curious about planners and asked me to make one for them.
Great idea, kids. GREAT idea! Another great idea? Let’s make it together!
I asked them what their “perfect planner” would look like and the requests came rolling in. They wanted stickers, a place to paste pictures, something they could decorate and personalize. And of course, it needed to help them track important things in their lives: homework, school events, activities, and get-togethers with friends. As their mom, I wanted a planner that was simple and easy for them to use. High quality, good paper, and plenty of writing space were also high on my list.
With the help of my three little ones, we’re thrilled to introduce you to our newest product, the 2021-2022 Kids Planner! We are so excited to bring this planner out into the world. It’s great for any kid, whether you’re 6 or 96. Want to see my kids’ reaction to seeing their new planner? Watch here!
Now that you have the perfect planner option for your child to start school, you might be wondering about the best way to teach them how to use it. Learning to use a planner is a valuable skill to teach your children – one that is not only important during their school-age years, but one that will carry them throughout their lives!
Want to teach your child how to use a planner? Here are five tips for teaching children to use a planner.
Choose a great planner!
We love the Kids Planner we’ve created but any planner will work as a first start. You can even involve your child in choosing their perfect planner! A few things to look for when helping your child choose a planner (these suggestions came straight from my own kiddos!):
— Flexible format that allows your child to make it their own
— A place to decorate, add stickers, doodle, and personalize!
— Plenty of space for your child to write down tasks and track important things in their life
— High-quality paper and materials
— Durability is of the utmost importance!
Show your kids how you use your planner!
Your kids watch you plan, so it’s important that you model how to take ownership of your personal responsibilities, goal setting, experience, and satisfaction. This is a tool to help them prepare for real life. By all means, set expectations for and encourage them… but this tool is theirs. Don’t try to force it. Let them have fun with it, and enjoy watching their planning style evolve as the year goes on.
Teach your child that writing things down helps you remember them!
One thing we know for sure: writing things down helps you remember them. Share a few basics for what to include in their planner, depending on your child’s age! For some children this might be assignments, homework due dates, or tests. Encourage them to create their own system by asking what helps them be successful. Then, don’t be afraid to check in and help them hold themselves accountable to their planner.
Encourage your child to make their planner their own.
This is where we let go and let be! Tell your child not to be afraid to write it, even make a mess of it! Tell them to have fun setting goals and planning their life, but not to forget have more fun living it. Encourage using the planner however they’d like to use it. There is no wrong way to use a planner – draw pictures! Write down memories. Use stickers and photos to decorate the pages and fun markers and pens to doodle in the margins. Jot down encouraging notes, whatever makes sense to your child!
Just start! The most important thing is to get your kids started by teaching planning as a habit.
Get your child a planner and just start! Consistency is key here so figure out a way to help them build the habit of using their planner. As a busy mama myself, I never want to encourage adding one more thing to your already full plate. So involve your children in your own planning habits and routines. That might mean including them in your weekly planning sessions or having a regular family planner meeting. One final tip, save their planners as a record of the year. It’s so fun to look back on them!
Did your children use a planner? What other kids’ tools and resources would you like to see? We’d love to hear more as we decide what’s next in our Kids Collection! Shoot us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.