Lesson planning and record keeping is a challenge for most Montessori teachers and homeschoolers. I had a system I was comfortable with as a Montessori teacher but never developed a consistent system as a homeschooler, even though I homeschooled my two children through high school. But now I’ve found a system that I’m happy to use with my grandchildren … thanks to the Ultimate Montessori Planner by Renae from Every Star Is Different.
Disclosure: This post contains some affiliate links (at no cost to you). I was given a copy of the Ultimate Montessori Planner to write my review. All opinions are honest and my own.
Why I Need the Ultimate Montessori Planner
I’m a Montessori teacher for my 3 grandchildren, so it’s time for me to get organized. When I had one grandchild (my now-4½-year-old granddaughter, Zoey), I could just wing it. My daughter, Christina, and her husband, Tom, now have a 3-month-old son, Caleb, they’re planning to homeschool using Montessori principles. (I’m part of Caleb’s homeschool team.) Zoey also has a 6-month old sister, Sophia, who I take care of a few afternoons/evenings each week.
I can easily use this planner for babies through elementary-age kids. So, it’s perfect for me!
The Ultimate Montessori Planner
The Ultimate Montessori Planner is designed for preschool, elementary, and special needs. It has 68 pages and the flexibility to be personalized for your unique situation.
Here’s the table of contents:
- Montessori Preschool Monthly Planner
- Montessori Elementary Monthly Planner
- Unit Theme Planner
- Monthly Field Trip Planner
- Event Planner Sheet
- Preschool Lesson Planner Part 1
- Preschool Lesson Planner Part 2
- Elementary Lesson Planner Part 1
- Elementary Lesson Planner Part 2
- Language Goals Sheet
- Math Goals Sheet
- Science Goals Sheet
- Geography Goals Sheet
- Practical Life Goals Sheet
- Sensorial Goals Sheet
- Music Goals Sheet
- Art Goals Sheet
- Grace & Courtesy Goals Sheet
- Movement Goals Sheet
- Geometry Goals Sheet
- History Goals Sheet
- Three Period Lesson Notes
- Weekly Observations
- Reading Log
- Study Notes
- Teacher Preparation
- Food Preparation
- Snack Planner
- Meal Planner
- Favorite Online Resources
- Behavioral Incident Report
- Therapy Notes
- Mental Health Notes
- Physical Therapy Goals
- Speech Therapy Goals
- Occupational Therapy Goals
- Mental Health Goals
- Therapy Goals
How I Like to Use the Ultimate Montessori Planner for Multiple Ages
My Planning Spaces
I love to sit out on my balcony among the flowers to do an activity like lesson planning. My other favorite place to plan is at a restaurant during weekly goal meetings with my daughter, her husband, and Caleb. I’ll typically use a mixture of these two places to make planning most enjoyable.
How I’m Individualizing The Ultimate Montessori Planner
Even though the planner isn’t designed for infants and toddlers, it’s adaptable enough to be perfect for me to use for any level from infant through elementary.
To prepare my personalized planner, I printed out the cover page and added it to a ½” showcase binder. You can use a larger binder if you want to keep your yearly plans in one place. I like to have the month’s plans only except for the first three sections. That allows me to easily carry the planner with me when doing lessons. I can just scan any other pages I want to keep into albums on my iPhone at the end of the month.
These are the pages I’m using right now and the order in which I’m using them:
- Montessori Preschool Monthly Planner
- Unit Theme Planner (where I put my planned units for the year)
- Monthly Field Trip Planner (to include planned nature walks)
- Preschool Lesson Planner Part 1 (with language, math, science, and geography plans and materials needed)
- Preschool Lesson Planner Part 2 (with practical life, sensorial, music, and art plans and materials needed)
- Study Notes (with notes, quotes, and insights from Montessori books I plan to read again)
- Teacher Preparation (with sections for materials, lessons, environment, food, self, other … so important!)
- Favorite Online Resources (with places for website, login and password)
- Practical Life Goals Sheet (There are places for goal, starting date, and accomplished goal. I’m using these as goals for myself: for example, activities I want to do with my grandchildren rather than goals I want my grandchildren to accomplish. I have practical life goals for all 3 grandchildren on the same page. For the babies, it can mean showing how to hold a glass or spoon to feed themselves when they’re ready.)
- Grace and Courtesy Goals Sheet (I have grace and courtesy goals for all 3 grandchildren. For the babies, this can mean making an extra effort to model specific etiquette rules.)
- Movement Goals Sheet (I have movement goals for all 3 grandchildren. For the babies, this can mean changing a toy on the wooden baby gym to encourage a variety of arm movements.)
- Sensorial Goals Sheet (I have sensorial goals for all 3 grandchildren. For the babies, this can mean having various textures available in a basket for them to feel.)
- Language Goals Sheet (I have language goals for all 3 grandchildren. For the babies, a language basket with safe household objects and other common objects to use with the 3-period lesson can be rotated regularly. With babies, the 3-period lesson generally means using the first period only.)
- Music Goals Sheet (I have music goals for all 3 grandchildren. I play lots of music for the babies. This reminds me to do the activity songs, such as songs by Miss Nancy, my grandbabies’ favorite, and to play specific music for music appreciation!)
- Art Goals Sheet (I focus on rotating pictures by famous artists for the babies. I love to focus on a variety of art appreciation activities for Zoey.)
- Math Goals Sheet (This is for Zoey right now.)
- Geography Goals Sheet (This is for Zoey right now.)
- Science Goals Sheet (This is for Zoey right now.)
- Reading Log (for Zoey)
- Three Period Lesson Notes (This can be used for babies through preschoolers.)
- Weekly Observations (I love this form because it helps me keep observations in one place rather than having a variety of notes that can be misplaced.)
What Else I’m Adding
I like to have an editable scope and sequence, so I’m individualizing and printing out the free Word file for Zoey’s final primary year from Maitri Learning and adding it to my planning binder. For Zoey, Sophia, and Caleb, I’m using the online scope and sequence from Montessori Compass and The Montessori Foundation as references.
If I want to refer to a Montessori album for a particular lesson, I typically use the Montessori Print Shop primary teaching manuals and the KHT Montessori teachers manuals as refreshers for my Montessori training.
With my new planning and record-keeping system, I’m looking forward to having more fun than ever teaching my grandchildren!
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