Homework

Homework is my nemeses. I have to grade it. I have to make sure it gets done and turned back in. Enough! This year I only give students reading homework nightly and told them at the beginning of the school year that I wouldn’t nag them and that they needed to be responsible for doing their homework one their own. I was not going to call home or take recess or write them up. If they wanted to go diving into the treasure chest that it needed to be done nightly.  And guess what they all stepped up. They did it nightly. They give me their homework graphs every morning to sign and didn’t complain when someone else in the group gets rewarded first way before them.

Parents are allows coming to me with stories about their child spending more than two hours a night doing homework. They are aware for the importance of why they need to do the work nightly but don’t understand why so much is coming home.  Some of the work may be from things that should have been completed in class that just didn’t get done and other is the assigned homework.
Interestingly, there is a growing voice that says that homework should be from what was taught two or three days ago.  I really like this idea because homework is to be independent practice (i.e., things that students can do on their own without help or the student has demonstrated mastery in class but you just want to make sure that they’ve got it).  How do you use homework? What strategies have you found work best to ensure that students do the work nightly and turn it in?

Ways to Make Homework Meaningful
  • Homework can keep concepts fresh in student’s mind and indicate when reteaching is necessary.
  • Homework should never be very difficult and should only require materials that are generally available in the home.
  • Tailoring homework assignments to students’ learning style strengths can immediately lead to better results.
  • Never let students believe that homework is assigned as busywork. Give them a clear purpose for why it needs to be completed.
  • Don’t use homework to lower student’s grades.
  • Provide appropriate feedback on all homework assignments—written comments not just a grade.
Tips for Parents and Caregivers
  • Communicate your belief that homework is an important part of learning.
  • Make an agreement with your child about how much after-school time he will spend doing his homework each day.
  • Work with your child to establish a homework schedule and do your part to honor it.
  • Provide a place where your child can work.
  • Remember that your child’s homework is his responsibility, not yours!
  • It’s tough luck, if your child forgets their homework.


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Welcome to my all thing special education blog. I empower busy elementary special education teachers to use best practice strategies to achieve a data and evidence driven classroom community by sharing easy to use, engaging, unique approaches to small group reading and math. Thanks for Hopping By.
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