as for planning... i use the new york state learning standards guidelines
for middle school. i figure out what is required for students between 6th
and 8th grades, and make a three semester plan of basically what they'll get
at each grade level. each summer i work out the bugs of old lessons and
incorporate the new lessons. the concepts i teach pretty much stay the same
year to year at each grade level. if for somreason we didn't get to
something, for example, gesture drawing in 7th grade, i just add that to my
8th grade curric for the following year.