As I work with students, I have noticed that the use of planners has started to become less frequent. When I was young planners were the go-to organization tool for students. I think that the shift away from paper planners is a result of more assignments being put online.  Online systems are a great way for students to track their homework, but they have limitations. There is a strategic advantage to using a planner in conjunction with online systems.

  1. Planners are customizable, online systems are often fixed, and students cannot add reminders or break down large projects.

  2. Planners help students turn lists into plans. Students can take their online assignments and create daily, weekly, monthly, and semester plans that supplement their online systems.  When students create a plan they can manage their time and energy levels more effectively, transition from task to task, and avoid procrastination.

  3. Planners also help students see the future because they make time visible.  Time is a very elusive concept for the human brain. Planners make time tangible for students because it helps them know what needs to get done in relation to future events. This process helps students who tend to procrastinate and students who tend to have anxiety about assignments.

  4. Planners give students a place to coordinate their assignments. Many schools have multiple online systems that students must check. The use of a planner helps consolidate these tasks into a manageable location. Planners can help students reduce the number of missing or late assignments.

I recommend this planner for middle and high school students and this planner for college students. For digital options, I suggest that students use Google Calendar.