The Best Homeschool Planner For Your Personality Type

Have you ever tried your friend’s favorite homeschool planner or planning method and it was a total flop for you?

It’s not because there’s something wrong with you. More likely, it was a process or a planner that just wasn’t a good fit for the way your brain works.

The Best Homeschool Planner for Your Personality Type Pam Barnhill Homeschool Solutions

Personality typing á la Myers-Briggs is an attempt to describe different ways our brains are wired: what sort of information we prioritize and how we prefer to make decisions. Our personality type certainly affects the kind of planner that works for us.

After all, we all know different planners and different planning methods work for different people.

However, that doesn’t mean you have to trial and error every method yourself to find a perfect fit.

When you know your personality, you can zone in on what’s most likely to work for you and you can also have more clarity and insight about how to customize your homeschool planner to work for you.

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If you don’t know your Myers-Briggs personality type, take the test at 16 Personalities. If you’ve taken the test but aren’t sure the answer is right, read about how to find your personality type here.

Based on my research about personality types, always applying it to our real lives as homeschooling moms is a useful starting point for not only finding the right homeschool planner for your personality but working your homeschool planner in the most effective way for your type.

ISTJ – the responsible homeschool mom ISTJ Type Homeschool Mom The Best Homeschool Planner for Your Personality Type Pam Barnhill Homeschool Solutions

The ISTJ homeschool mom has a strong desire to do the right thing and keep track of the details. She will want a record-keeping system and a structured plan. Her planning strength is her reliability and consistency.

She needs a traditional school planner with lessons laid out in a way that feels familiar to her will be the best approach. She will want to see the structure of her curriculum as well as her day and be able to mark off visible progress. Digital archiving might appeal to her desire to keep memories without keeping clutter.

 

ESTJ – the down-to-earth homeschool mom ESTJ Type Homeschool Mom The Best Homeschool Planner for Your Personality Type Pam Barnhill Homeschool Solutions

The ESTJ homeschool mom is practical, realistic, and driven. She doesn’t like to get off course or off topic and she always has a goal she wants to achieve.

The ESTJ is a natural planner and will know what she likes in a planner, be it digital or paper. She needs to beware of overplanning or overloading the schedule and also aware of letting the plan become the master rather than the tool. Including her purpose for homeschooling on her planner where she can see it often will be beneficial.

ISFJ – the nurturing homeschool momISFJ Type Homeschool Mom The Best Homeschool Planner for Your Personality Type Pam Barnhill Homeschool Solutions

The ISFJ homeschool mom is supportive and nurturing, always seeing what each individual needs in the given moment and doing her best to give it.

Because she prefers a supportive role but is good with details, an ISFJ is better at implementing someone else’s plan than creating one herself. She needs to find a trusted source for a plan and remember she can adapt it to fit her kids’ (and her own) needs. She will prefer a clear-cut plan rather than a loose big-picture concept.

ESFJ – the companionable homeschool mom ESFJ Type Homeschool Mom The Best Homeschool Planner for Your Personality Type Pam Barnhill Homeschool Solutions

The ESFJ homeschool mom loves the all-together lifestyle homeschooling provides and wants to take advantage of teachable moments and relationship building.

An ESFJ will likely love to plan, particularly on paper with a creative flair. She will need a way to juggle the details of her active attention and schedule. A routine flow-chart or loop schedule will help her balance working toward goals and taking advantage of the in-the-moment opportunities she sees.

ESTP – the adventurous homeschool mom ESTP Type Homeschool Mom The Best Homeschool Planner for Your Personality Type Pam Barnhill Homeschool Solutions

An ESTP homeschool mom is enthusiastic about learning and loves to provide interest-based learning, experiences, and projects. She will ensure her children never think learning is boring.

An ESTP will prefer to have overarching topics or themes and leave room for exploring resources and experiences and projects. Using a planner to fill in such learning after-the-fact will work better than trying to plan it out beforehand. Evaluating the progress and current needs every month or term will help an ESTP keep on track and fill in the gaps.

ISTP – the DIY homeschool mom ISTP Type Homeschool Mom The Best Homeschool Planner for Your Personality Type Pam Barnhill Homeschool Solutions

The ISTP homeschool mom is less authoritarian and naturally flexible. She won’t mind dirty kids or messy science experiments. She loves to see her children explore the natural world.

 

 

 

The ISTP might want to try planning alongside each child, taking into account their interests and ideas about structure. Because she’s less assertive, getting the kids on board with the learning process will be crucial. She will need a planner that leaves room for acknowledging self-direction and project-based learning.

ESFP – the in-the-moment homeschool mom ESFP Type Homeschool Mom The Best Homeschool Planner for Your Personality Type Pam Barnhill Homeschool Solutions

The ESFP homeschool mom is friendly, outgoing, and attentive. She can set up beautiful learning environments or experiences (like poetry teas or art centers) naturally and flawlessly.

An ESFP will need help creating a plan. She will do best with a ready-to-go plan from a trusted source that leaves plenty of free time and also wiggle room for outside activities and spontaneity. A pen-and-paper approach with short daily lists for the essentials only will most likely serve her best.

ISFP – the generous homeschool mom ISFP Type Homeschool Mom The Best Homeschool Planner for Your Personality Type Pam Barnhill Homeschool Solutions

The ISFP is quiet yet responsive, enjoying a learning lifestyle with her kids without being overbearing.

An ISFP will need her routines spelled out in her plans, but yet have room in the day for taking advantage of teachable moments and projects. The style of her planner will matter – she should make sure it visually appeals to her.

INFJ – the understanding homeschool momINFJ Type Homeschool Mom The Best Homeschool Planner for Your Personality Type Pam Barnhill Homeschool Solutions

The INFJ homeschool mom listens well and is committed to her vision of a harmonious lifestyle full of love and understanding. Although she’s easily overwhelmed with details, she craves structured routine.

An INFJ needs to make sure her ideas get out of her head onto paper so she can think through what needs to be done with less overwhelming perfectionism. Having a big-picture plan she can adapt on a daily or weekly basis will likely work well for her.

ENFP – the creative homeschool momENFP Type Homeschool Mom The Best Homeschool Planner for Your Personality Type Pam Barnhill Homeschool Solutions

The ENFP homeschool mom loves to say yes to fun – and often has a hard time with the mundane details of life at home. She is asily distracted.

An ENFP needs a clearly written plan to help her stay on track, but it needs to be full of variety and allow room for adaption and flexibility. Her homeschool planner will not be stark or utilitarian, but creative, full, and connected to her vision. It might look all-over-the-place to another type, but because that’s how her brain works, it will work for her.

INFP – the tuned-in homeschool momINFP Type Homeschool Mom The Best Homeschool Planner for Your Personality Type Pam Barnhill Homeschool Solutions

The INFP homeschool mom is perceptive, understanding, and sensitive. She will keep a peaceful atmosphere and a deep connection with her children.

An INFP will avoid decision-making be easily overwhelmed so she needs a planning mentor, whether in person or online, to help her stay on track. She might be drawn to adopting a technologically savvy homeschool planner, but she should avoid any planner that offers too many options or is visually cluttered.

ENFJ – the enthusiastic homeschool momThe ENFJ Homeschool Mom Best Homeschool Planner for Your Personality Type Pam Barnhill Homeschool Solutions

The ENFJ homeschool mom loves to connect with her children and big ideas. The more often she can connect her children to big ideas, the happier she will be.

An ENFJ will need to make her planner personal and flexible. She will love to adapt based on each child’s current needs. Having a big picture that she applies and adapts daily will feel best to her. Leaving space and time to journal about the day in the evening will help her connect reality to her ideals.

INTJ – the determined homeschool momINTJ Type Homeschool Mom The Best Homeschool Planner for Your Personality Type Pam Barnhill Homeschool Solutions

The INTJ homeschool mom will have her own (highly-researched, well-thought-out) way of doing whatever she sets her mind to. Planning, for her, is the easy and fun part; doing the plan each and every day is draining and difficult.

An INTJ desires the most effective homeschool planner, so she will customize either a paper or digital (or combo) solution to fit exactly what she wants. It will be focused on her priorities and have zero fluff. Planning incrementally rather than all-at-once is a good way for her to keep perspective and enjoyment in the process.

ENTJ – the decisive homeschool momENTJ Type Homeschool Mom The Best Homeschool Planner for Your Personality Type Pam Barnhill Homeschool Solutions

The ENTJ does not believe in impossible once she’s decided to do something. She makes things happen, always in line with her guiding principles.

An ENTJ will have a streamlined, effective, thorough planning system. She needs to remember to take time to pause regularly and evaluate the situation so she’s making appropriate decisions and not letting her grand plan railroad everyone else.

ENTP – the unconventional homeschool momENTP Type Homeschool Mom The Best Homeschool Planner for Your Personality Type Pam Barnhill Homeschool Solutions

The ENTP homeschool mom has confidence and energy to spare; she will model and expect independence and unconventional approaches. She is good at seizing opportunities, but not good about following through on details.

An ENTP needs a firm conviction about her purpose and goal so that she can improvise in the day-to-day. It might look random and disjointed to others, but if she stays true to her core mission, she’ll stay on target. Having a set of big-picture, weekly or monthly goals rather than detail-specifics THEN tracking their actual work according to those goals after the fact will help her stay on track while winging it.

INTP – the intellectual homeschool momINTP Type Homeschool Mom The Best Homeschool Planner for Your Personality Type Pam Barnhill Homeschool Solutions

The INTP values her own knowledge base, ensuring it’s wide and deep. She finds ideas fascinating and loves to follow rabbit trails and work out theories.

An INTP’s homeschool planner is simple: it’s a book list. Read books. Discuss. Because she has a hard time with physical details, she needs to think more about giving her things and books convenient homes than about keeping a homeschool planner. A simple, unfussy, flexible bullet journal will serve her purposes nicely.

So what personality type are you? Do you have a planner that fits? Let’s chat in the comments!

Want to know more? Check out Mystie’s post on homeschool personalities, which includes a free one-page printable reference sheet. Learn more about how your personality affects your homeschool!

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  • Jennie says:

    Hi, I’m INFJ, and your planner suggestion is quite accurate. I’ve recently discover I need an overall plan/direction for the year and then to assess my plan each week/day.
    I use a bujo dusty to do this, it’s quite new to me but is working wonders! I live the flexibility of it, but am still able to make clear plans when I need them.
    Jennie ?

    • Jennie says:

      How my predictive text changed ‘planner’ to ‘dusty’, I do not know!!

      • Sara says:

        I’m so glad you added this! I’m also an infj and I thought “I’ve never heard of a bujo dusty! I should go look that up!” Ha! Silly auto incorrect.

        • Meghan says:

          Ha! I wasn’t about to google Bujo dusty too!

    • Dawn Garrett says:

      I’m an INFJ too … having a curriculum that is pretty organized but that I make the final decisions on (daily/weekly) has been key!

      I’m also trying to do a bujo, but my J is the weakest ever – so I’m not very good with keeping up on it! I just keep trying <3

    • Tina says:

      Another INFJ-A here. This was spot on for me. I use google calendar to track all of our appointments and family commitments (the big picture). I also use a bullet journal insert inside of my traveler’s notebook. This way I can do our weekly planning and notes and make quick adjustments on the fly without having to open the computer. I was never able to find a planner that worked for me, and always had so much wasted space in them.

    • Laura says:

      Another INFJ here! I agree that Mystie’s assessment was spot-on.

      I use a weekly planning sheet and checklist I make in MS Word to make sure I’m hitting the essentials every week. I leave plenty of room to add in extra stuff or make notes about what we read, which math activities we did, etc. I love that I can change the documents when our focus shifts.

      I also really like using curriculum that includes detailed plans. It removes a lot of the stress for me, since I can look at an activity and make only one decision: yes or no.

    • schaden says:

      I lost my son in a hardware store. I don't have words for that type of panic. It was maybe 5 minutes… but I remember running to the parking lot because I would throw myself at the car he was taken to. Instead he was behind some cabinets in kitchenware. I'm not sure if God has ever hit me in the head with ice, but I always laugh that God has to send me NEON SIGNS for me to notice what he's been telling me for a month. God really does care

    • Meg says:

      This is me also. I struggle between using my planner, that i love, and planning out a big picture. I wish i could enjoy making spreadsheets! I write things out but they dont feel … i dont know? Do able, or like they make sense. I love the core we use, and it is laid out for me. I really dont like piecing everything else in because we dont hit it all. I just need someone to take my thoughts ive written and plan it out for me! Haha *in my dreams* 🙂

  • Tracey says:

    I’m an infp. I was wondering if you had any concrete suggestions for a planner. Your suggestion is leaving me with no direction at all. And I’m not criticizing. Maybe there’s something I’m missing. I’m genuinely asking for help.

    • Sophie says:

      Ha I’m also an Infp and I was thinking the same thing. This helps me in no way. Is it saying the schedule doesn’t matter cause I’m not gonna follow it anyway unless I get someone to make sure I do? Cause that might be true hahaha

      • Ginger says:

        I’m an INFP also and totally get both of your comments. I think the recommendation here is to get another homeschooling mom, or one program online, to just tell us what to do. — Like a preset curriculum and daily schedule that we can print out and follow (and tweak as needed) instead of being overwhelmed by getting a blank planner for the year and filling it in ourselves. Because choosing curriculum for each subject area and making up schedules exhausts us INFPs! We will be great at following a schedule, once we have one!

  • mystie@simplyconvivial.com says:

    Hi Tracey! Do you prefer gadgets & apps or pen & paper?

    I have a lot of posts on using Evernote as a homeschool planner if you like technology: https://www.simplyconvivial.com/2015/how-to-make-homeschool-lesson-plans-in-evernote – Evernote is simple and uncluttered, but a blank canvas, so the tutorials will help.

    If you like pen and paper, check out Anne Bogel’s bullet journalling (she’s an INFP): http://modernmrsdarcy.com/bullet-journal-tips/

    Then you’ll probably want to find plans and lists elsewhere instead of making your own from scratch – Motivated Moms, Ambleside Online or another curriculum set – you’ll do better following a pre-decided list of things to do or books to read than create & follow your own from scratch. Even better: find a friend to do it also so you have a relational connection over the plan.

    • Amy says:

      The fact that Mystie notes that INFPs would do better following a pre-decided list is accurate for me. I’m in my fifth year of homeschooling and have fought myself often wondering why I cannot just get these great ideas out of my head and on paper. I do not like a lot of options and I seek out like minded lists or curriculum to follow. I’m great at adjusting the list and then making it my own for our family. And in our homeschool my two school age kids have spiral notebooks where I write down what they do every day. It keeps me on track.

      As for myself I haven’t found the right planner yet, but am working with a bullet journal for a reading journal. I tend to keep my planner (traditional planner in binder) for record keeping. I’ve even tried the index cards for simple things to do around the house. Actually a spiral notebook could be used for bullet journaling as well. I just gave myself an idea! LOL

      Thanks for the post!

    • Jackie B. says:

      INFP-T here. I feel silly for asking, but how does a bullet journal differ from making a checklist in a spiral notebook? I tend to be a bandwagon junkie – so am hesitant to try one. I’m worrried that all the blank space would freak me out. Making new plans is definitely not my specialty (though I do best with a flexible routine) and I’m really particular about keeping things visually appealing – if a page starts to become a mess of scribbles, it’s probably getting ripped out.

      Thank you so much for your suggestions!

    • Anna says:

      Some thoughts from my experience as an INFP (even those with the same personality type will differ on things 🙂 ):

      I do tend to be easily overwhelmed, but that is often when
      I start looking at what “everyone else” is doing and comparing myself with them. If I lessen the outside distractions and stay tuned in to myself and my own kids and plan accordingly, I feel much more peaceful. Any kind of comparing or feeling of competition is stressful for me.

      Accountability for a few easily-overlooked subjects with a friend or group (art and nature study in our case) is good, but I haven’t felt the need check in with someone else for my whole plan – unless you count sharing my plans and progress on my blog, I suppose. 😉 We INFP’s can be quite determined when we feel strongly about something – but that can also make it hard to open up when we are struggling. 🙁

      Bullet journaling was good for keeping notes and ideas all in one place, but having to write out everything (days of the week, etc.) made doing it consistently a struggle. I bought myself a pretty planner this year (because pretty helps) in the hopes that I will be more consistent with planning. For my kids, I print out master checklists before each 12-week term (I use Amblesde Online as a base and adjust it for our family) and then use spiral notebooks to write out their assignments each evening.

      • Rebecca says:

        Thanks Mystie! I always feel like I have to have this huge detailed plan (which I spend way too much time developing and then don’t follow).

        I’m an INFP. What has really worked for me is a consistent Morning Time routine- which I developed from your Free Morning Time Binder e -book. I have a basket with the living that books I use for History, Science, Music, Art, etc. and just rotate through them each week. Along with our poetry and read-aloud novel. I put all the supplies I’ll need in that basket so it is there for me. I try to remember on Sunday Night to print out handwriting worksheets for the week.

        I like making spreadsheets, but the truth is that I read my own handwriting better than a printout, my eyes skip things on the printout every time. When I write it out, I automatically emphasize the important stuff in the way I write it, and my eyes don’t skip over important bits!

        While the girls do their handwriting, I make their checklist for the day in a spiral notebook (I think I also got this idea from you?)

        That way, I have wiggle room. If I want to do music today and history tomorrow I can, as long as we get to each subject once per week (exceptions are math, Handwriting, Spanish, and Reading& Writing, which I try to make sure we do daily)

        I also use Ambleside as a resource for supplement books ideas for my differently aged children. (Ages 14-8)

  • Heather says:

    I’m an INFJ, and I love a written, big-picture plan! I too have had success with the BUJO! Mystie, I love all of these personality posts!

  • Kelly says:

    I’m an INFJ also and I’m trying to find out what a BUJO is!! ? Is this an acronym for Bullet Journal or a specific product?

    • mystie@simplyconvivial.com says:

      Yes, BuJo = Bullet Journal 🙂

      • Kelly says:

        Does anyone have links to examples of their favorite bullet journals?

        • Nellie says:

          Hi Kelly,
          If you have an instagram account, search both bujo and bullet journal. You’ll find SO MUCH you’ll never need to look anywhere else!

      • Brandi says:

        Hi. I’ve been following your blog quite a while. My personality type is INFJ-T. And i keep getting lost and overwhelmed with planning. I get great ideas but then the details burn me out and I get overwhelmed and drown after kicking away too long. What is a bullet journal and any ideas on what might help? I started Evernote recently and that’s been a huge help as well as your brain dump ideas! I can’t tell you how much I appreciate your posts!!

        • Lynette says:

          Brandi, you took the words out of my mouth. I feel exactly like that and even though we’ve been doing this for 9 months I’m totally drowning. I just can’t figure out a routine or a curriculum. I really need to start somewhere…

        • Amy says:

          I’ve entered out last few weeks into Evernote as we’re “behind” in the lessons in our curriculum. I wanted to make sure I touched the absolutely necessary things. I’m liking Evernote. Surprisingly, as I’m a pen and paper girl. We’re using Simply Charlotte Mason next year and I want all those lessons plans in one location. Not sure if Evernote will be the right way to go with so much info.

          I’m reading a lot about the Bullet Journal being a good option for our personalities. But unless I’m missing something, I loathe a Bullet Journal. I want all my pages preprinted not something I have to create each time.

    • Amy says:

      Me too, to both, lol

  • Julie says:

    Nailed it! Love honing in on how I work and figuring out how to juggle all of this with peace Rather than comparison etc! Love it. Thanks.

  • I am an ESFP and wondering what the best planner is for me. I have tried several that other moms raved about, but just didn’t work for me.

    Thank you for this article!

    • mystie@simplyconvivial.com says:

      Which ones have you tried? The hardest part of a planner working for anyone is actually looking at it daily and keeping it up – but that would be particularly true for ESFPs. What type is your husband? Maybe you could have a daily or weekly mini-meeting/date over coffee to go over calendar/plans to help you stay on track? If you can find some relational accountability somehow, you’ll have better success.

      Also, you’ll want a pretty planner that matches your style, your look – it has to feel like a visual fit for you. Have you looked at Erin Condren planners?

  • Emily says:

    INTJ. I have tried a few homschool planners, but I keep coming back to the Simple Plan planner from Mardel. Definitely to-the-point with no fluff, so I guess I am staying true to my personality 😉 I also use a BUJO for my personal planning. I have it down to a pretty fuss-free style with bullet points rather than all the pretty styles some people enjoy getting into.

  • Amanda says:

    Thanks for this great post, Mystie! I’m an INFJ (pretty sure you know that already ;)) and I think this is a good description, though I don’t get overwhelmed with details. But having a place to keep them all organized has been key for me. I’ve never used a bullet journal, but am using a Happy Planner this year, and so far I am really liking it. It has three sections for each day of the week–one where I log our school to-dos (my to dos in that area), one where I log errands, phone calls that need to be made, etc, and one where I log our meal plan and what I need to pull from the freezer, etc. Each night I review the day and make sure I’ve got my ducks in row for the next day. So far, so good.

    • Melody says:

      I’m an INFJ-T too, and last week I found the Happy Planner! Finally, I have planner peace ?. I am going to combine everything into one place (family, household, & homeschool), and use one planner to rule them all!

  • Herbwifemama says:

    Hmm, I’m an INFJ, and the bullet journaling has never appealed to me, but hearing from all these other INFJs has me rethinking it a bit. It hasn’t appealed to me because it’s a new thing to learn, and I’m so overwhelmed with the details of my life (heh) that I haven’t really had mind-space to learn a new thing. But if it could help me plan my days better, I’m willing to give it a shot. Is there a place I can learn more about it in a non overwhelming, simple way?

    • Herbwifemama says:

      I should also say what I use that’s working. I have two planners: one for school and one for everything else. I use the Well Planned Day planners- the homeschool one for school, and the On the Go planner for everything else. I am trying the new Prayer version this year instead of the On the Go, so we’ll see how that goes. I often also have a to do list, which is kind of like a bullet journal. 🙂

    • Trish B says:

      Fellow INFJ here. I found the video on this page really helpful to get me started on using a bujo. Short and sweet.
      http://bulletjournal.com/

      • Dawn Garrett says:

        I agree, Trish. I started with those videos, too. There are a lot of instagram and pinterest resources, too. The BuJo is so flexible!

        • Trish B says:

          I used to buy all kinds of planners and then never really used them. Especially the dated ones. Missing a day (or 10) really messed me up. I find the bujo soooo freeing. If I miss a day it’s no big deal. I just pick up where I left off.

    • Dawn Garrett says:

      I use a very simple layout and just try to do basics to remind me of what to do. I don’t change it up all the time, I like the consistencey (J, anyone?) and make other kinds of lists. I like a little bit of flexibility and spontenaity in my standard form 😉

    • Tina says:

      @herbwifemama I kept getting pulled to the bujo, but was put off by all the artsy ones. I finally googled “simple bullet journal for homeschool” or something like that, and found a number of posts that I was finally able to adapt it to something I could use for myself.

    • Paige says:

      Herbwifemama I am feeling the same way right now. I am an INFJ as well. I’m so overwhelmed that I don’t have the brain power to add anything else that makes me have to learn something new. I just watched the video linked below about bullet journaling and I just kept thinking that there is no way I’ll follow through with that at all!

      I’m using a spiral notebook for my sons school work and that does work for me. It’s cleaning and planning my days and weeks for me that are killing me. I’ve spent more money on planners than I want to admit. I’m not buying another one. I just printed a planner with over 300 pages and I’ve not picked it up in 2 weeks. I don’t know what to do to get myself back on track right now.

      Just wanted to say you are not alone.

  • Lauren says:

    So good. Nailed me again. (INTJ) I have actually just recently found my happy place by adapting Mardel’s simple homeschool planner to fit my needs (integrating it with Pam’s Plan Your Year) and backing up records digitally (with inspiration from Mystie’s Evernote tutorials). I can’t get away from my love of pen-to-paper planning, but I also want to be prepared for all the contingencies, hence the digital back up. So yeah…you totally described me. 🙂 And thanks to you both for providing awesome tools!!

  • Laura says:

    ISFJ-fits me to a T!

    • Sue says:

      What planner works for you Laura? I’m
      Homeschooling kindergarten now and will be starting grade 1 in the fall. I am also an ISFJ.

  • Charity says:

    I don’t have a planner for homeschool that I’m happy with. I try to function with the Well Planned Day, but I easily get overwhelmed when a child is “behind” according to the planner. This post has helped me so much. I just had such a “light bulb moment!” I finally see the why I struggle and also found the why I keep looking for a printed up lesson plan for my children instead of a planner!! I am ISFJ…I am not creative, but I now have some ideas that may better suit my personality and take the frustration out of my head. For my personal life I use the Mom Agenda planner. I am a column and a category planner. I use a block for business, one for house chores, and one I label as this and that. The box labeled ‘kids’ is where I put there info is someone is grounded or has extra tech time, etc… It’s plain enough I can washi, or leave simply as it is when I feel minimalistic. If anyone can suggest a planner for my personality type I am all ears!
    I really enjoy your info and have grown so much because of it!!
    One thankful mama from Oklahoma?

  • Lisa says:

    Hi! I am looking for planner guidance for an ISFP-T personality type. Thanks!

    • mystie@simplyconvivial.com says:

      You’ll want the visual look and feel of the planner to match your personal style, and you’ll want something that spells out details for you so you don’t have to think through “what do I need to do?” every day. So you might use pre-prepared plans or you might copy someone else’s lists and plans (like AO or My Father’s World for homeschool or Motivated Moms or Flylady for housekeeping) into your pretty planner.

  • mmelabonte@gmail.com says:

    Yes! I’ve been thinking I must be an INTP, and I already have… a bullet journal. 😉 Which I love, and I first heard about from Mystie. So thanks!

  • Trish B says:

    I’ve been homeschooling for a long time (1999). I had felt for years that I was just a scatter brain because I couldn’t seem to get it together like all the other moms. I had great plans but never could follow them through. Knowing that I am easily overwhelmed because of my personality type (INFJ) has made a huge difference this past year. I’m still in the thick of things with 16, 14, 12, and 8 yo boys. 2 introverts and 2 extroverts.

    This year I’ve been using Pam’s Plan Your Year for my big picture, a spiral bound notebook for the boys daily lessons plans (flexibility), and a bullet journal for my stuff. It’s been working great!! Less is better in my case. 🙂

  • Emily says:

    Totally on the money for this INFP! I am easily overwhelmed by lots of tabs and calendars and designs. I’ve found it works for me to have a clean notebook and just bullet what we’re doing that day! Low pressure, low clutter, easy one the brain!

  • Rachel Neely says:

    I’m an ISTJ, and true-to-form, I use the teacher’s planner from SchoolhouseTeachers.com! I need an overall plan and a daily list to follow. All in pencil, though so that I can adjust as needed. Although, I have a yearly list, I only plan a month at a time. This planner is perfect for that or as a daily log, instead.

  • Tahara says:

    I scrolled through the comments to see if anyone has my same personality type to get ideas of what would work, but I don’t see anyone with my type…I am ENFP, and could really use some ideas 🙂

    • mystie@simplyconvivial.com says:

      Hi! You might want to visit MacKenzie Monroe, another ENFP who does artsy, fun bullet journalling and also uses various planners: http://boldturquoise.com/

  • Marla says:

    Another INFP with an opinion. I find the best option is to focus on an overall schedule and routine. I have systems for everything in my life. A system for laundry, a system for dinner, a system for each subject. All the systems and subjects need their own space in the day. This takes away the need for so many everyday decisions and leaves the space in your brain for the bigger ones. I use no planner, no bullett journal, no spiral notebooks. We don’t need any of that, because what we need to do and when we do it is built into our days. My children have a simple list of what subjects to do each day. Assignments are streamlined, read this many pages or for this long…this saves mom from having to look at all the books everyday and write down chapters or page numbers. I write a list only when there is a big change in routine or schedule. They k ow what books to use because they are the ones on their school shelf. I just wanted to share, because I know what overwhelm feels like, and I thought these ideas may be more helpful to an INFP than trying to find a planner…I have never found a planner that simplified my life…and isn’t that a planners job? I have been doing life this way for years, and feel it is a tangible, permanent solution.

    • Rebecca says:

      This is my experience as well. Mystie’s Morning Routine Binder is the best “planner” for me. I have to have the same routine every day. If I have to keep checking the planner for what to do next, it won’t happen!

    • Julie says:

      Marla! Thank you for this. I can’t wait to streamline our days more, using your ideas.

  • Amy says:

    ENFP here, and I do things virtually the same as Marla just posted. It is the only thing that I find works for me.
    The only difference that I can think of is that I give younger children their checklist every Monday and it is for entire week.
    My older children are in charge of their own schedules. I only interfere if there is a change. we work towards independent learning.
    I get overwhelmed when a system is not working.
    I spend a lot of time tweaking my weaker systems. I like to design space and move furniture to make my systems work better. I love it when the mundane details just work like a machine with bare effort on my part.
    This makes it so I can drop everything for something spectacular or interesting.

  • Julie says:

    Thank you, Mystie! You totally nailed me as an ISFJ and I just had a big “aha” moment as to why I’ve stuck with a group like Classical Conversations year after year. So many of my friends do their own, more free-spirited approach and I’ve wanted to be more like them, but realize now that my personality needs a plan (thankfully this also suits my kids best). Like you said, I do love freedom to tailor CC to my kids and draw in great read-alouds. So I use my Bullet Journal to adapt our weekly plan. Love all your reader comments!

    • Angela Zepf says:

      My brother just sent me a book on classical education. This is our first year of homeschooling and trying to figure out what works for us

  • Melissa says:

    YES!!! ENFP over here! I did NOT write out a clear plan this year and we have gotten SO off-track. I struggle with the day-to-day priority subjects and sometimes get caught up in the more creative lessons. This is inspiring me to write out my plan for this second half of the year so we have something to hold me accountable. Thanks for this!

    • Stacey A. Golightly says:

      So what have you used?

  • Missye says:

    ENFP here! OK, so basically I don’t like to plan because I come up with several and then can’t seem to follow through with any of them. I have tried planners in the past, but have found them too regimented and it becomes another hassle to deal with. I get lost in the details even though I am intrigued by categories and the appearance of organization. I have a bit of shiny object syndrome. Is there any hope for a distracted homeschool mom of middle schoolers like me to find a planner to keep me on track?

    • Heidi says:

      ENFP here with a major shiny object syndrome! I kinda disagree with the description, only because it says the planner won’t be stark or utilitarian but creative and full. I waste SO much time trying to find the perfect creative…and then don’t use it. I’m beginning to think the no planner/system method Marla mentions above is best. INFPs share the same cognitive functions as ENFPs…just with an introverted preference. So in stead of Ne, Fi, Te, Si…INFPs are Fi, Ne, Si, Te.

      • Missye says:

        I think I agree about what Marla does. That’s what I used to do; block out times on a white board every morning with just subjects. When they were younger I printed out weekly checklists. Unfortunately, my follow through is not so great as I easily get bored or distracted and the kids would just skip around instead of following the order. I am a CC mom because of the built in accountability although the work load can be a little overwhelming with a houseful of distractos! I made an individual calendar for each child with their schedules permanently put on it and then laminated it so they could fill in the blanks with their own schedule using a wet erase. They aren’t utilizing it, so I think I will have to go back to creating a routine of subject order blocks. They are going to have to learn to fill out a planner guide required by CC starting in high school. Hoping some of these planner ideas might help them as well. I’m sticking to my spiral notebook for just writing down my ideas or lists.

      • Betsy says:

        I’m an ENFP/J (depends on the day I take the test!)–but I’d like to echo that ENFP’s don’t necessarily have creative-looking planners. I think that creative drive we share easily manifests itself in different outlets. My planners have always been stark–I was a “minimalist BuJo” user and then went back to a boring planner. I have a notebook I fill with all manner of info, but it’s all text and boring-looking. That being said, having systems in place and have the hard landscape of the day on paper allows my creativity to flourish in other ways (making up random cheers for math class, for instance). In fact, my planner by itself would probably look like I’m a different personality type when it’s really just freeing me up to BE my personality type :-). And i should add that for YEARS (15?), I haven’t been satisfied with the all-in-one planners because they’re too restrictive for the way I want to use my planner at any given time :-).

  • Katrina Breit says:

    I can relate to Trish B’s post though I’m in my 9th year as a homeschool Mom of 4. I am pretty sure I am an INFJ but sometimes the test will say I am an ISFJ so I’m going to read up on that today to compare the two. I’m leaning to INFJ though …. Bujos overwhelm me with the blank space; there are too many decisions to set them up and I don’t like making my own pages. So, since many INFJs like Bujos it begs the question why I buy one and then stare at it across the room with a scowl on my face. On the flip side, too many parts and pieces or places to keep information also do me in. I ADORE Evernote; the scatter brained piles-of-notes-papers-and-links loves being able to put them into EN when I’m overwhelmed. The Erin Condren planners are appealing in layout and color; I like the moveable dry erase inserts (i.e. meal planner) and the page layouts. The colors inspire and cheer me also! I use a jar full of colored pens and Sharpies every day when I’m working with my kids so I know that color and cheer are important to me (but no pattern or clutter!). Colorful simplicity is my style with the fewest number of moving parts possible. As far as homeschool plans go I have 1,000 GREAT ideas; I know how to choose resources; I can generate excellent output opportunities for the kids in my mind. But, sit me down to get it on paper and I FAIL. Then, I grieve. Sigh. It’s taken me a long time to figure this out ….. I KNOW that flexible structure is a big help but it can’t be a homeschool plan that schedules ALL subjects (i.e. Heart of Dakota or even My Father’s World). ANYTHING that integrates multiple subjects gives me fits because I cannot keep all of the parts moving in sync across all ages/grades. Simply Charlotte Mason’s style appeals to me as does the layout of their planner for homeschool. **Off to compare INFJ to ISFJ. I’m still so fuzzy on what each letter represents; except for the I. I’ve got that one down pat. :).

    • Katrina Breit says:

      Oh how I wish I could edit my post ….. This sentence needs fixed: I ADORE Evernote; this scatter- brained-piles-of-notes-papers-and-links woman loves being able to put all of that info. into EN when I’m overwhelmed. 🙂 Something like that …. AND there really are NO kids IN MY MIND :).

    • Emily Ekegren says:

      Katrina! I have so much in common with you. I’m also wavering between the N/S. I have started so many “amazing” curriculums, to also fail. I’ve tried a million planners, to never use them more than 6 months. I like to use lots of pens and Sharpies with no system. Bujos completely overwhelm me. Simple and colorful is what I like, too. I have found that undated planners are good for me. I’m thinking about piecing one together and having it bound, maybe quarterly instead of a year. I also like all-in-one planning. Homeschooling, cleaning, exercise, meals, life… it needs to all be in one spot. Good luck, girl!

  • Lisa says:

    Hi there! I’m in the minority it looks like…I am an ESFJ. I have never tried loop scheduling, but do use paper and love to plan. Are there any others out there like me? What works for you?

  • Ann-Marie says:

    Hi Lisa…I am also an ESFJ 🙂 I took this test about 15 years ago and just re-took it with the same results. I would love to hear more suggestions, Mystie, if you had them about planners. I am definitely a paper and pretty pen planner kind of gal! I have tried looping and it works well when I remember to do it. This past year I have been having a hard time juggling and balancing the details as well as schedules. I tend to have more planners that I use. I have tried bujo and like it, but, need to have more than one going at a time to feel organized {maybe one home and one hs}. I would also love to hear what others have to say as I would love to get more organized!

    • Lisa says:

      Hi Ann-Marie! I’m glad I’m not alone?! I have a 9th grade daughter. Would loop scheduling work for high school, too? I took the Myers-Briggs in the 80’s. I can not remember my type, but it was different than what I am now. It sounds completely accurate, as well as Mystie’s summary of the “Homeschool Mom”type. Very cool.

      • Ann-Marie says:

        Lisa, I too have a 9th grader and have not been able to do much in the looping area as everything seems to need to be done most of the time…but I am working on that 😉 That is the thing about us ESFJers,,, we seem to be working on things alot! I use looping mainly in Morning Time and that helps quite a bit with me not getting overwhelmed about getting everything done. We’ve been homeschooling for 10 years now and I also have two younger children. I need to loop more than I do because now that we’ve added high school, it seems to have upped the stress level for me thinking and planning our days. I read the ISFJ description and there are days that seems appealing to, but, when push comes to shove then I tend to put my own spin on it and not completely do something that has been laid out word for word…but it still does appeal to me 🙂

        • Ann-Marie says:

          Mystie, thanks so much for this wonderful post and place to chat with like minded mommas!

  • Erika says:

    I’d love some suggestions for a planner for an ENFJ 🙂

    Pretty much nailed me to a T with what I need in a planner, but would love some actual planner suggestions – please !! Thanks 🙂

  • Lacey says:

    Misty,
    Thanks for the wonderful post. I’m an ESFJ here and always on the look out for a wonderful planner. Who has some suggestions?

    🙂

  • Tessa W says:

    Intj here. I made my own weekly inserts for my Franklin covey binder and it is truly simple with no distractions. Place for appointments and place for task list. I also put a weekly homeschool layout in my divider that I can adapt as the week progresses and toss for an fresh one at the end. I also have a “bullet journal” filled with more detailed notes and lists attend brainstorming and it is not fancy at all. Mostly just bullet point notes. Guess I’m a pretty typical intj 🙂
    I’m going to check out that Simple Planner thst other intj commenter have mentioned. Maybe get some inspiration. And maybe I should write about my own system in more details too because I know how much I love to hear about other systems.

  • Angela Zepf says:

    ISFJ
    Trying to figure out the best planner!

  • mystie@simplyconvivial.com says:

    A lot of times it’s not that there’s one planner out there that will suddenly make planning work, it’s learning and building the habits of *using* a planner than will make nearly any planner work. Here’s a post I wrote on the habits that make a planner work:

    https://www.simplifiedorganization.com/2016/productive-habits/

  • Alex says:

    I LOVE This! thank you SO much!!! Can you tell me an ENFJ homeschooling mom to follow? What is Sarah Mackenzie? (because I know she is an extravert & love following her too! 😉 I have been so blessed by all of your posts – thank you for all that you do & inspire me to! (I have a 3 & 1 y/o boys & am getting excited to start 🙂

  • mystie@simplyconvivial.com says:

    Yes, Sarah Mackenzie is an ENFJ.

    I have a fun video chat about planning & planners with Dawn Hanigan (I think she’s either an ISFJ or an INFP) and Jennifer Mackintosh (she’s into temperaments more than MBTI, but I’m guessing either ESFJ or ENFJ). You can find that here: https://www.simplifiedorganization.com/letstalkplanning/

  • Amy Koski says:

    I am an ESTJ, have never used a “planner” per se, but love the idea! Supposedly it says I will know it when I see it. Any ideas on which would work well for me? I have a High schooler, a middle, and K and a 1st. Thanks!

  • Christine says:

    What pen and paper planner do you recommend for estj??

  • Heather says:

    Yesssssssssss… INTP here, and this may be the little push I need to try a bullet journal.

    Meanwhile… Mystie, where can I read more about the “hard time with physical details”? What a chord that one struck with me!

  • Colleen says:

    I have completed the test twice and both times the results were ISTJ-A. I’m not sure what the -A means, but I’ll keep reading.
    I actually found the description of the INTJ to be an exact fit for me. I have made my own planning pages for a couple of years because I want exactly what I want and nothing else 🙂 It drives me crazy to have anything on the page that I don’t want or need. Additionally I found the statement about the daily drain funny, because I swear I can feel the energy being sucked out of me one large drop at a time!
    Thanks for everything that you do Mystie and Pam!

  • LibbyJane says:

    Woah, this is awesome! Great to read all people’s solutions.
    An ENFP, I have used a heavily altered Franklin Covey planner for years, with a bullet journal and populated with elements from Simplified Organization. My Franklin Covey just fell apart, and since I make all the components myself I decided to make a more traveller’s style notebook and to hold my same system.
    I derail myself by giving up, or getting distracted, or just blowing the plans off if I can find a more fun plan, so it’s keeping the planner simple and relevant, and using it that’s key for me!
    I love the ideas around using routines as plans…

  • Chasity says:

    I am an ENTP and the style of planning recommended has been what has worked best! I’ve tried all other kinds of planning and have found them boring or tedious, but having my big picture goals and “winging it” has done the trick. Our study time is so much less stressful and my children and I are thriving on it. It must seem crazy and dis-jointed to some friends, though.

  • Jenn says:

    ISTP…suggestions welcome, please!! I didn’t use a planner at all this year, but I only had 1 child to teach. Next year, we add here brother, and eventually 2 more!

  • Tina Kaye says:

    INTJ here. You are so right! I’ve used several planners that almost worked, but my own custom sheets made in Excel always end up working best for us. I also find planning easy, and sticking to the plan challenging. In the last 15 years of homeschooling, I’ve finally learned that I need to dial it back a bit and leave room for flexibility and spontaneity.

  • Stacey says:

    ENFP here. I used My Student Logbook last year and loved it. I had one for each student and one for myself. Like someone mentioned above in the comments, I have tried to streamline what they need to do: xx pages of math; 15 min of vocab; etc. So they have a checklist to do every day and I have a checklist of the subjects they need me to do with them every day. Student Logbooks are great for those of us with a serious aversion to monotonous daily tasks (I tried the Sarah Mackenzie spiral notebook approach: but good heavens, I don’t want to actually write the words “Math” and “Vocabulary” in each student’s book EVERY DAY (or week)! Torture! All of you guys who write out everything every week/day are ultra-patient saints in my book!) With the logbooks, you fill out the list once, and they re-use it every week. Even better, the dates are pre-printed. Yay! And then, when the part of our ENFP personality that craves variety, or sees a way to improve the day or modify the subjects, needs to change that list: easy. Change the list and they will continue to use the new list until you feel the need to change it again.

    I also find it very helpful to use a company that provides an IG for the subjects that just have too many paths to go down. I find a company I like and generally stick with their choices. I personally use Bible Road Trip for Bible and Sonlight for History/Lit. Then, on my list it says Sonlight and Bible Road Trip; I just do those subjects for a certain amount of minutes, and I do whatever is the next thing to do in their IGs. Trying to pick my own materials for these fascinating subjects was causing me to drown in overwhelm. I couldn’t even really use a curriculum that gave me a list of books to pick from. I tried. I got overwhelmed! 😉

    Now, for getting specific assignments that aren’t so streamlined out of my head and into a plan, I’m still looking for my sweet spot. I am thinking of trying Homeschool Planet. I can’t say yet if it will work.

    My biggest issue is that we need to track hours. I can accomplish 1,000 hours of learning (our state requirement) without a problem – our checklist is just a spring board into all sorts of other fun learning. The checklist is there to make sure we get the basics done; life provides so many opportunities for learning beyond the basics. But I have a desperately difficult time getting it all logged onto a formal record. This is where my “scattered” aversion to the mundane really rears its ugly head!

    For personal life, I have recently gotten a My Happy Planner and loved it. I don’t beautify it or use the stickers. But I love that I can rearrange the pages. I added notes to the back with categories so I can brain dump in a somewhat organized way (i.e. page is labeled: fun outings. This is for all the times I think: “We should do that sometime,” and for all the times we think, “What’s something fun we could do?”) I also have a brain dump/to-do list page that I insert in the middle of each week. I move it to the next week as needed. Previous planners would have me going back 3 months to re-read the notes I took when I got that “terrific” idea that one time. Because I’ve added note pages, I removed several months and put them on different rings to keep my planner size manageable. I also love the vertical layout to the individual days. Helps me visually block the morning, afternoon/evening, and that day’s must-dos. It really does feel like it “fits” my personality!

    • Patricia says:

      Oh my goodness thank you! I just needed someone to tell me what to go look at that My student logbook is perfect! Ordering a few of those!

  • Crystal says:

    It was very difficult to find my personality type, to see if what jives for them jives for me. This topic almost needs to be split into links for each personality type, so that type can have comments sections all to themselves.
    There’s enough moms could add to make this topic it’s own site IMHO.
    Reviewing planners by various kinds of personality types, not just the Myers-Brigg. Articles from moms and links what other moms have done.
    I’m ENFP, by the way. I’m also Social Global. So I like talking and getting a baseline this or that to start with, then tweak it. Other times, I just use the big picture idea and do it totally another way. Not crafty either- as some other ENFPs have said. Like my planners plan for the fact I find visual candy way too distracting.
    Thank you so much for the time you put in into not just helping, but building community.

  • Amber says:

    I tested ISTJ, but I feel like the ESTJ fits me more. I am definitely more of an introvert than extrovert, but people usually are surprised by that fact lol. In terms of homeschooling, I tried and didn’t like using a fully planned out curriculum. I didn’t like feeling guilty if I don’t cover every single point. I liked adding in books I found on what we were covering and that meant a bit over overkill lol!! I learned I like to have more control over what we are using and our plan. I do find loose guidelines helpful for some of our subjects, but not all. Though this doesng help my feeling of “are they missing something?”. For a planner, I discovered an evergreen Homeschool Planner by Bloomington Design on Etsy that suits my needs very well. It is a PDF file. I print out the sections I like to use in planner and put them in a binder. I don’t like having sections in a planner that I don’t use (unused sections would make me feel like I had to use them). For planning, I pencil my plan two weeks in advance, this gives me the freedom to erase and pencil in something else if our week or day changes. I do like checking the boxes on each subject once we complete it ?

  • Samantha says:

    I’m an ENTJ determined homeschool mom. What a description! I design my own curriculum pulling from the best resources I have thoroughly researched. Then I plan them thoroughly using the technique from Mardel’s planner. But I use an Erin Condren because the coil and paper quality are so much better and I love the colors and pretty quotes. So, yeah, you nailed me! Lol Thanks for a great read. ?

  • Dessie Kline says:

    ISTJ here…and I’m feeling like I probably need to make my own planner. 🙂 I want something uncluttered that opens up and has my boy on one side of the page and my girl on the other, so I can see our day/week in one shot. I wish I could just make my image in my head appear as a planner. 😉

  • Amy says:

    So…what planner layout does a INFJ-T homeschool mom need?

  • ChristineH says:

    I’m so confused about what will work for me. According to 19Personalities, I am a ISFJ-T. When I read the descriptions above, I think I’m a cross between ISFJ and INTJ leaning more toward INTJ.

    I love planning. I make elaborate detailed plans and can never ever stick to any pre-made plan because I tweak them so much that those plans are unrecognizable. I have trouble implementing my own plans, though. This part: “Planning, for her, is the easy and fun part; doing the plan each and every day is draining and difficult.” is exactly me. I’ve tried digitally planning as well as paper/pen. I prefer the tactile feel of paper/pen. I do drool over pretty planners such as Jen Mackintosh. When I try to create my own planning pages, I always make them colorful, cheerful, and motivating.

    So any ideas of where that puts me? What kind of planner would work best for me? And get me from beautifully self-created lesson plans to implementation?

    • ChristineH says:

      I wanted to add that I’ve taken/read several personality profiles and ISFJ-T does seem to fit me more. I don’t know if that piece of info is helpful. 🙂

  • Tina says:

    I came up as an ESFP-A. The description on the personality page does not seem to match, but the description on the Pam’s page does. What kind of planner goes with this?

  • Megan says:

    I scored a ESTJ and I totally made my own planner last year because I couldn’t find one that was exactly what I wanted. So I guess “know what you want” is accurate to the point that there are none good enough and I had to make my own! (That’s slightly embarrassing if I were the type to get embarrassed by my own quirks ??‍♀️)

  • Rose says:

    INFP here, so do you have recommendations like use xyz planner for your personality?

  • Rose says:

    Editing to add I’m about 50/50 I/E so I read both INFP and ENFP and together they are exactly right

  • Joy Bush says:

    ESFJ – what type do you recommend & where can I get it?

  • Stacey A. Golightly says:

    So, for the ENFP OR INFP… what planners fit for them?

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