I’ve always believed that we should strive to help our students to understand how to plan and take control of their work. An AP course is one step away from college where they will encounter both a lot of work and a lot of freedom. The process of having students create a schedule also helps them to look at the full scope of the project before getting started.
While students often have to make adjustments to their schedule, I find that they like the ownership and control that creating a schedule gives them, and they learn a lot from the process.
I do often need to step in and help them to make their schedule more specific or to help them break each piece down into smaller steps, as at the beginning they often want to simply write a date and say complete piece number one and so forth.
The second sheet I use about half way through their time to create their concentration as a check in and reflection. This again makes them look at the whole scope of the project, and reevalute if neede