Finally, a Planbook for the 21st Century Teacher (Update)

page1-1001-full.jpg

Let me say that as I write this, my wife is gleefully entering her first week into Planbook. Periodically, I hear an “oo” and am informed of another feature that simply makes sense for the modern teacher.

Planbook is a digital lesson book. Actually, it is a digital organizer for teachers. Jeff Hellman was frustrated with the limitations of a paper planbook, so he created a program that includes document and link integration, lets you publish to the web with customizable themes, and will print your plans in a traditional format.

I was using a blog as the information center for my English classes the last couple of years. It made managing my disorganized students a reasonable task. If they lost something, I told them to go to my blog and click on the link. If they missed a day, I sent them to the blog before arranging their makeup work. Planbook gives you the same opportunities but integrates it into your organizational system. That’s one less step each day in your routine.

When it comes time to share your plans, you can publish them or print them. You choose the information you want published and tell Planbook to send it to your website, iWeb, or a folder. The publishable plans can be accessed through a master list or a calendar. Links are sorted on a sidebar by date. Jeff provides guidelines for creating personal themes and has published several user-created themes on his site. If you need to give a copy of your plans to your administration or a sub, you can print a daily plan. Want to look at an overview of your week? Print a weekly plan (for us digital immigrants who sometimes need to scratch at something when we plan). You can even publish lists of attached files and links.

Here’s the cherry on top: Jeff is asking a reasonable price for the program. Individuals pay $30, but if you can get ten teachers together, the price drops to $10. For my faculty (140 teachers), the per teacher cost would be $2.14. That’s a pretty small investment for such a powerful organizational tool. It’s out for Mac now, and Jeff is shooting for a Windows XP/Vista version this month.

Update:  Jeff’s released the Windows Beta.  See comments for details!

Planbook (Via TUAW)

Comments on this post

  1. Dale Basler said on September 1, 2007 at 11:23 am

    This looks promising. I’ve been using Google Calendar but this takes the idea to the next level. Awesome!

  2. Jeff said on September 3, 2007 at 10:04 pm

    Hi=

    Thanks for the wonderful review!

    Just to let you know, I released both an update on the Mac side of things (1.0.6) and the first Windows beta today! You can grab the latest Mac version at http://www.hellmansoft.com or sign up to be a Windows beta tester at:

    http://groups.google.com/group/planbook-for-windows/

    Thanks again!

    Jeff

  3. Jeff Hellman said on April 10, 2008 at 1:24 pm

    Hi again-

    Just a quick update- Planbook 1.1 for Mac was released a couple of days ago and has loads of new features including a user-definable work week, rotating schedules, custom text-fields, text snippets, autosave and backup, among others.

    You can grab it, and check out the new web site at: http://www.hellmansoft.com.

    Thanks-
    Jeff

  4. Juan Rivera said on May 9, 2008 at 12:35 pm

    How can I download Planbook for windows?

Leave a Reply

Trackbacks and Pingbacks on this post

  1. […] I was a classroom teacher?  In bloglines this morning I find that Jim Coe of Bionic Teaching has a nice review of the program. Listen to this […]

TrackBack URL