Homework

In order that our pupils can attain the highest standard (spiritual, moral, social, cultural and academic), we recognise the crucial importance of an active educational partnership between home and school. Homework is just one of the ways in which we seek to foster this partnership, whilst actively supporting children in developing the skill of independent learning.

Regular, well planned homework can: 

  • Help pupils develop the skills of an independent learner.
  • Enable pupils to make maximum progress in their academic and social development, develop good work habits and self-discipline for the future.
  • Encourage skills and attitudes which help children improve their educational performance.
  • Help parents gain insight into their child’s schoolwork and promote partnership between home and school in supporting each child’s learning.
  • Provide opportunities for individualised work.
  • Consolidate and reinforce learning done in school and assist in preparation for future class work.

We aim to: 

  • Ensure that parents are clear about what their child is expected to do.
  • Ensure consistency of approach throughout the school.
  • Use homework as a tool to help continue to raise standards of attainment.
  • Improve the quality of the learning experience offered to pupils and to extend it beyond the classroom environment.
  • Provide opportunities for parents, children and the school to work together in partnership in relation to children’s learning.
  • Reinforce work covered in class by providing further opportunities for individual learning.
  • Practise or consolidate basic skills and knowledge, especially in Mathematics and English.
  • Encourage children to develop the responsibility, confidence and self-discipline needed to study independently.
  • Prepare Year 4 pupils for the transfer to Middle school.

 What is Homework?

Homework should not be a chore, but children should see it as an extension of their schoolwork. There may be occasions when some tasks are more challenging or difficult than usual as homework plays a positive role in raising a child’s level of attainment. We also acknowledge the important role of play and free time in a child’s growth and development.

We see homework as encompassing a wide range of possibilities ranging from reading with a parent, a family visit to a local museum, finishing off work from the class or going swimming. We believe homework can be a two way process. Teachers may ask for tasks to be done at home, but are delighted to learn about children’s success in other aspects of their lives and will seek to recognise this in school.

Recommended Time Allocation

Homework should never be too onerous nor should it ever create stress within the pupil’s family. If parents have any concerns they should not hesitate to contact the school. Normally, more than one day will be allowed for the completion of a homework task, except where daily practice is to be encouraged e.g. reading, spelling and times tables.

The following are government recommendations as appropriate time allocations for homework activities.

  • Years 1 and 2 – 1 hour per week
  • Years 3 and 4 – 1.5 hours per week

At Ashlands and Misterton Church of England First Schools each year group will have three key tasks that will be set weekly as homework. In addition there are a number of example tasks and activities that might be given as additional homework when appropriate. This is by no means an exhaustive list and is open to development. Homework activities will adapt to meet the needs of the pupils involved and activities that might be occurring in class. All homework tasks and activities will have a clear purpose and assist pupils in the process of their academic development.

Foundation stage – Reception (approximately 1 hour each week where appropriate)

  • Phonic focus activities linked to class focus.
  • Maths challenge activities linked to individual targets.
  • Reading at least three times a week (daily if possible).

Additional tasks may include;

  • Counting up and down stairs, number of jumps, number of tins etc. etc.
  • Reciting nursery and counting rhymes.
  • Identification of shapes in the environment.
  • Fastening and unfastening buttons and zips and tying shoelaces – getting dressed and undressed etc. etc

Year 1 and 2 (approximately 1 hour each week)

  • Phonic focus activities linked to class focus.
  • Maths challenge activities linked to Times Table Challenges.
  • Reading at least three times a week (daily if possible).

Additional tasks may include;

  • Comprehension tasks.
  • Handwriting activities.
  • Learning number facts / Real life numeracy related problems e.g. shopping, car numbers.
  • Playing games to support social skills.

Year 3 (approximately 1 ¼ hours each week)

  • Phonic focus activities linked to class focus.
  • Maths challenge activities linked to Times Table Challenges.
  • Reading at least three times a week (daily if possible).

Additional tasks may include;

  • Comprehension tasks.
  • Handwriting activities.
  • Learning number facts.
  • Numeracy activities.
  • Practising calculation strategies learned in class.

Year 4: (One and a half hours per week)

  • Phonic focus activities linked to class focus.
  • Maths challenge activities linked to Times Table Challenges.
  • Reading at least three times a week (daily if possible).
  • In readiness of transition, once a term children will be set an extended piece of home learning related to topic work, lasting approximately 4 weeks. This may take the form of writing information texts, making models or preparing a presentation to deliver at school.

Additional tasks may include;

  • ‘Talk Homework’ that involves discussing the focus for a future piece of writing.
  • Handwriting practise.
  • Reading comprehension activities.
  • Practising calculation strategies learned in class.

This is in line with DFEE for KS1 and KS2 guidelines as issued in 1998.

 Role of the Class Teacher

  • To provide an explanation of homework tasks to children and, when necessary, parents and give guidance of how they might assist their child.
  • To set up regular homework in an easily followed routine.
  • To ensure any homework is purposeful and links directly to the curriculum being taught.
  • To reward and praise children who regularly complete homework tasks.
  • To mark homework appropriately, when necessary and give feedback to pupils.

N.B. Whilst there is a legal responsibility for a school to set homework on a regular basis, the school cannot enforce the completion of homework and therefore, will not punish children for failing to complete some, or all of their homework. However if a child persistently does not complete homework then the teacher may contact the parents and ask to speak to them in order for school and home to work in partnership for the benefit of the child.

The Role of Parents

We are very keen for parents to support and help their children with homework. We take the view that children are likely to get more out of an activity if parents get involved as long as they do not take over too much. As a good rule of thumb we would encourage parents to listen to the child’s explanation of what they have to do and discuss the work their child is doing and whether or not help is needed plus what form this might take. It is particularly important, as they get older, for children to become increasingly independent in their learning. If a parent is unsure about what their role should be, they should discuss it with their child’s teacher.

If parents have any problems or questions about homework, they should, in the first instance, contact the child’s Class Teacher. If they wish to make a formal complaint about the school homework policy or the way it is implemented; parents should put their complaint in writing as stated in the Complaints Procedure Policy.

Role of the Head teacher and Governing Body

  • To meet and talk with parents when appropriate.
  • To discuss with staff how homework is having a successful impact on learning.

Pupils with special educational needs 

We set homework for all children as a normal part of school life. We ensure that all tasks set are appropriate to the ability of the child. If a child has special needs, we endeavour to adapt any task set so that all children can contribute in a positive way.

Racial Equality & Equal Opportunities

All children have equal access and inclusive rights to the curriculum regardless of their gender, race, disability or ability. We plan work that is differentiated for the performance of all groups and individuals.  Ashlands and Misterton Church of England First Schools are committed to creating a positive climate that will enable everyone to work free from racial intimidation and harassment and to achieve their full potential.