Different People, Different Planning Needs
Planbook Plus has a few features that when used together, create an extremely flexible and powerful lesson planning tool. To get the most out of that power and flexibility, it helps to begin that journey heading in the right direction. This article will explain the best initial setup for a few teaching scenarios to get the most out of your evaluation of Planbook Plus.
There are two primary factors that affect your initial setup of Planbook Plus.
- How many classes or groups of students you plan for?
- How many different subjects you plan for?
Here are some typical combinations.
- Example 1 – An elementary education teacher teaches one group of students multiple subjects.
- Example 2 – A secondary education teacher teaches one subject to three separate classes or periods.
- Example 3 – A kindergarten teacher may teach multiple classes of students and teach multiple subjects.
Planbook Plus works best when you create a planbook for each subject (or course). In this example, we will setup Planbook Plus for a teacher that teaches multiple subjects to the same group of students.
First, let’s start by creating a planbook for each subject.
Steps to create a planbook
From the main menu, click the My Planbooks menu item, then click the Add Planbook sub-menu.
Enter a Name and a Start Date for the planbook. The Start Date should generally be the first day of school. Then click the Create button. The other fields can be changed later and are not required for the initial setup.
That’s all there is to adding a planbook!
Back to Example 2
Back to Example 3
Example #1 Continued
Now repeat this process for each subject. When you have created all of your planbooks, your Planbook Search screen should look similar this.
Now you are ready for lesson planning. Check out this article on Getting Started, which covers entering lesson plans, and using the Calendar and Timeline views. Be sure to add lessons to multiple planbooks and see the impact on the Calendar View.
In this example, we will discuss how to setup Planbook Plus for a course that you teach several times a day.
Follow the steps in Example #1 to create one planbook for a course you teach multiple times a day.
Using Lesson Plan Time
Many teachers prefer to use the starting time and ending time fields for each lesson in a planbook. When you set the time, the Calendar view orders the lesson plans chronologically. This feature is great if the lesson is exclusively taught at that time. However, what do you do if you teach a lesson multiple times a day? You have two good options.
- Option 1 – Leave time values blank, and reference that lesson plan for both periods.
- Option 2 – Specifically set multiple times per lesson plan by sharing the lesson plan across planbooks.
If you leave the time fields blank, the lesson plan will appear at the bottom of your calendar view.
In the calendar view, a lesson can be shared with another planbook. This is extremely valuable if you would like to reuse the same lesson plan for several periods (or sections). It is also valuable for sharing lessons between AM and PM kindergarten classes.
In the calendar view, locate the lesson to share. Click the arrow icon and click the Link Lesson option.
Select the other planbooks to share with and, if necessary, change the date for the shared lesson plan.
Note. It is possible to select a date that does not correspond with a classes A/B or rotation schedule. In this case the lesson plan is scheduled for the first date that works with that planbook’s schedule.
Once a lesson is shared with another planbook, when it is edited, those edits are reflected in all planbooks. However, how each shared lesson fits into the context (dates and times, units and sequencing) of a planbook is specific to each planbook.
In this example, we will discuss how to setup Planbook Plus for a set of subjects that you teach multiple times a day, like AM and PM kindergarten classes.
First, follow the steps in Example #1 above to create one planbook for each subject you teach. By separating each subject into its own planbook, you can easily plan one subject using the Weekly Planner, yet view that subject along with others in the Calendar View.
Scheduling the AM and PM classes for kindergarten is what differentiates this kind of planning from other scenarios like teaching multiple periods during the day. If you need to set times for both AM and PM classes, or need to establish different lesson plans for AM and PM classes, you will have to use two sets of planbooks: one set for the AM class and one set for the PM class.
If you do establish a set of planbooks for each of the AM and PM classes, then you may choose to use the Link Lesson feature. For any given lesson on the Calendar view, click the arrow icon and click the Link Lesson option.
By linking the lessons, you edit and maintain only one lesson plan in Plan book Plus. By using separate sets of planbooks, you have the choice of assigning any lesson plan for each day, each class. Below is a view of the Calendar after linking and reusing the same lesson for the PM class. Notice the link icon indicating it is a linked lesson.
These three examples should help the majority of you get Planbook Plus set up properly so that you can better evaluate and use Planbook Plus. If you do not fall into one of these three examples, please contact us via e-mail at email@example.com or post to our support forums here. We would love to hear your feedback.