Purpose of Homework:The purpose of homework is to strengthen academic skills, reinforce concepts taught by teachers, develop student responsibility and accountability, and promote parent awareness. Positive results of homework include better retention of factual knowledge, increased understanding of material, improved critical thinking, concept formation and information processing skills, as well as enrichment of the core curriculum. Our goal is to create assignments that promote one or more of these outcomes. We recognize that homework is not the only circumstance under which after-school learning takes place. Many leisure-time activities teach important academic and life skills. We believe in the importance of balancing leisure, learning and family time.
Homework is an independent activity to be accomplished outside of the school day. At times, it may require some parental help. Homework may be used as part of the student’s overall evaluation and to locate problems in student progress. Not all homework assignments will be formally evaluated. Homework will fall into one or more of the following categories:
- Practice - Activities to reinforce skills such as studying spelling words and practicing math facts.
- Preparation - Assignments designed to provide background information and focus on future class activities. Studying for tests and reading supplementary materials are examples of such homework assignments.
- Extension/Creativity - Activities such as book reports, science projects, and research for social studies reports are examples of such homework.
- Leisure reading - Expands vocabulary, improves writing quality, and promotes life-long learning.
- Unfinished class work or work missed due to absences, although accomplished outside of the school day, is not included in the school's definition of homework. Missed class work, as well as homework is assigned after a student’s absence. Regular school attendance is critical for student academic success.
Amount of Homework
The amount of homework assigned shall be related to the maturity and ability level of the students in a given class. The following chart suggests these homework schedules as guides for students. These schedules can be used as guidelines for parents and teachers in monitoring student time devoted to homework.
K – 2 10 - 30 minutes up to 4 days per week
3 – 6 30 - 60 minutes up to 4 days per week
Be advised that students on occasion may spend more than one hour and/or more than four days a week completing schoolwork, as time at home may be spent doing assigned homework, long-term projects, and completing unfinished classroom assignments. Students have varying abilities to use class time efficiently, and the amount of time spent on homework varies from one child to another.
Student ResponsibilityIt is the responsibility of the student to record and understand the homework assignment, complete it, and return it to school on the required day.
Parent's ResponsibilityIt is the responsibility of the parent to set a specific time and place for doing homework and to monitor the student's homework. Parents who have concerns about homework should contact their child's teacher. Parents should provide guidance to students, not answers.
Teachers will be responsible for assigning homework to students and for providing the necessary explanation and direction required ensuring that the students can accomplish the work with reasonable success. The teacher will also monitor, assess, and acknowledge homework results for parents and students. Specific classroom homework guidelines will be established by each teacher in accordance with the district policy taking into consideration students with specific needs and abilities. Teachers will share their homework guidelines with parents at Back-to-School Night.
- The length and frequency of homework assignments will take into account the developmental level of students in the class as well as the resources available at home.
- Students can expect assignments that help them practice skills already learned, prepare them to learn new skills in class, and require them to apply learned skills to new situations outside of school.
- Homework will generally focus on skills and material already learned, on extending these skills, or on the integration of skills already possessed by the student.
Homework Tips for Parents
- Be a stage manager. Make sure your child has a quiet, well-lit place to do homework. Make sure the needed materials are available.
- Be a motivator. Homework provides a great opportunity for you to tell your child how important school is. The positive attitude you express about homework will be the attitude your child acquires.
- Be a role model. Help your child see that the skills he or she is practicing are related to the things you do as an adult. Example: Demonstrate your interest in reading. Read in front of your child.
- Be a mentor and a monitor. Homework is one way for children to develop independent, life-long learning skills. Watch your child for signs of failure and frustration. If your child asks for help, provide guidance, not answers. If frustration sets in, suggest a short break. If you want additional homework, select appropriate enrichment or reinforcement activities.