Record keeping for unschoolers?

A lot of unschoolers and eclectic homeschoolers don't track their time or activities. If you're not doing grades, and you're not learning on a timetable, you may not feel like you need records at all.

Many "unschooly" families do keep records, though. Why? Some reasons:

  • Keeping a daily record is a way of reflecting on what you've learned. Your activities are still fresh in your mind, but you've had a little time for perspective.
  • It's fun to think back over your activities, to write down what you did, and to highlight the best parts of the day.
  • It encourages you. A list of past accomplishments can lead to new ideas, or just boost your morale on a bad day.
  • Your state, charter school, or college admissions board may require some kind of record keeping or reporting.

Homeschool Day Book is designed to be friendly to less-structured homeschoolers. There is very little overhead or setup required--you enter all your records on one screen (where the program starts). The idea of "subjects" in Homeschool Day Book is very flexible: "Books We Have Read" or "Field Trips" can be tracked just as easily as "Math Lessons". Activities can always involve more than one kid at a time, or cover more than one subject at once.

Curious? Click here to download a free trial version of the software (no obligation, fully featured, the only restriction is on the number of uses). You can also view screenshots and read more about features of the software here.

For more thoughts about unschooling and record keeping, here's a more detailed discussion from Karen Gibson. Karen wrote this in 1999 and didn't have the option of using Homeschool Day Book. Luckily, you do.