1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.
  2. Hi Guest, welcome to the TES Community!

    Connect with like-minded education professionals and have your say on the issues that matter to you.

    Don't forget to look at the how to guide.

    Dismiss Notice

Student Planners - paper or online?

Discussion in 'Secondary' started by huwlj3, Apr 29, 2020.

  1. huwlj3

    huwlj3 New commenter

    Hi all. I have been tasked with a new student planner for our students from September 2020. Currently pupils use the planner mainly to record homework, but also to communicate between school and home e.g. "Please excuse Johnny from PE today..." or "Johnny's dog ate his homework...". In them is a staff list, copy of the code of conduct, ICT acceptable use policy etc. I would like to move to an online planner, we currently use SIMS, we pay for the parent app etc.but do not use it. Pardon my lack of knowledge but is there something in SIMS we could use as a planner for pupils or a further app they provide? If not, can you suggest an online planner you use? Many thanks in advance.
  2. muso2

    muso2 Occasional commenter Community helper

    So would students need to always have an online device with them to record homework?
  3. Corvuscorax

    Corvuscorax Star commenter

    working online all the time has very negative effect on development of the ability to organise, and planners are to help with organisation. Why would being online be helpful or convenient at all?Also, very bad for the environment, as you will end up having multiple copies printed on on random bits of paper rather than one copy kept for a year.
    huwlj3 likes this.
  4. Corvuscorax

    Corvuscorax Star commenter

    And in this day of EVERY SINGLE THING school related being done on line, how much time are we all swatting every day trouble shooting and finding workarounds for the constant stream of glitches and failures? Failure to up load, failure to save, failure to be visible in a legible format failure to down load, failure of password, failure of internet altogether.....
    ajrowing and huwlj3 like this.
  5. huwlj3

    huwlj3 New commenter

    No, homework can be recorded by the teacher through SIMS Engagement.
  6. Corvuscorax

    Corvuscorax Star commenter

    students need to record their own homework, even if it is recorded online by the teacher as well, how are they going to do that in lessons? Also, how are they going to read it if they don't have access to a device?
    agathamorse and huwlj3 like this.
  7. frustum

    frustum Star commenter

    Child's school issued a planner last year, but then put everything on Show My Homework, so it was only used rarely (and they eventually stopped demanding that we sign an empty planner every week). This year they gave them a smaller one (although it would be helpful if they'd redone the information pages rather than just shrinking them to a barely readable size). They're a "no mobiles" school, and that doesn't seem to be a problem. I don't know whether they have pupils who can't access the internet at home and what they do for them (other than a homework club).
    One disadvantage of electronic over paper: students can't add their own tasks - eg things they need to do for out-of-school activities, or (shock, horror) going back over something they struggled with.
  8. Jonntyboy

    Jonntyboy Lead commenter

    I wouldn't go with an online planner, ever: we use the hardback, spiral-bound planners, and though for certain students they would be better made of kevlar, in the main they work very well for all the jobs they do. Every teacher, in every class, won't start a lesson till all the kids have planners on desks (or in rare circumstances are going to fetch them) and though we do use SMHW, it's as an extra that helps but doesn't substitute for the students themselves jotting HW in planners. Plus, you can keep immediate track of behaviour issues on the day, individual needs, special circumstances, messages from home, toilet requests etc. - and for me at least using them has never been disruptive nor taken more than a couple of minutes every so often. I wouldn't be without the system.

    Also, getting the kids used to actually opening a book and looking in it regularly can't be bad: despite so many electronic devices, do we really want future generation to be completely penless or bookless? The pleasure of owning, holding and reading a book, and being able to go back a page or two to refer or re-read, is one that I don't think we have a right to deny them, even if it may always only be appreciated by a minority in the future.

    ACOYEAR8 Star commenter

    Totally agree with real-you can-touch-it planners. Our school re-branded them as " learning handbooks". We all, inc students call them planners still although the planning element is gone since we now have a homework delivery platform. I'm off to have a herbal beverage experience.
    Jonntyboy and huwlj3 like this.
  10. davidGGlines

    davidGGlines New commenter

    We have narrowed the list to 3 apps for now: iStudiez Pro, Power Planner or Egenda (School Planner & Assistant). But there're still doubts as for their necessity. Some teachers prefer paper notes only, so we can't agree on the most appropriate way for students to manage their tasks and get the most suitable homework help planner.
  11. ACOYEAR8

    ACOYEAR8 Star commenter

    SMHW does all the planning for them in our school. They still need something physical to record passwords etc....... also a grasp of the day of the week helps...could do with a reminder of that myself.
    Jonntyboy likes this.
  12. Bps_9123

    Bps_9123 New commenter

    Read this and it will help you massivley:
  13. Bps_9123

    Bps_9123 New commenter

    Read this if you have time:
  14. Jonntyboy

    Jonntyboy Lead commenter

    Thanks for that input. I've now read it. It appears at least to me that the problems at the place mentioned were down to the school's organisation and interaction with the students, not the planners!

    "Students were meant to get them out at the start of each lesson, but invariably did not do so. Even for the students who remembered their planner, some of the instructions were quite long because it’s never as simple as “do the worksheet”, is it?

    Staff would have to write off between five and ten minutes of each lesson to simply get homework written down in planners."

    That wouldn't - and doesn't - happen at our school! We use planners and SMHW and they work amazingly well together. It's about how you organize things and what your expectations are. I doubt we'll change anytime soon, partly for the reasons I noted in my earlier post.
  15. caterpillartobutterfly

    caterpillartobutterfly Star commenter

    Are you using Teams or google classroom at the moment?
    Can staff upload homework assignments there? And add any announcements needed

Share This Page