We see homework as a process which must ultimately benefit each child in our school. Homework at all stages should give parents and carers the opportunity to become actively involved in their children’s learning. It is also our intention that homework will encourage greater responsibility and independent learning. As children get older, it will help them organise themselves and their time.
We recognise the key role that family time has to play in the development of our pupils and we want to make sure that homework does not impinge on this. However, it is really important that parents support with the home learning that is set and talk to their child about their learning daily.
Time Allocation for Homework
Foundation Stage: Up to 1 hour per week at the teacher’s discretion
Key Stage 1: 1 hour per week to be spread over the week
Lower Key Stage 2: 90 minutes per week to be spread over the week but may include a ‘block’ of extended work
Upper Key Stage 2: 2 ½ hours per week – essentially 30 minutes per day
In Foundation Stage, we ask that parents listen to their children read daily. We also believe that parents should read books to their child. Sharing books is just as valuable in aiding a child’s progress in reading as is your child reading to you or to their teachers.
The best way for parents to support their child’s maths learning is to promote the recall of number facts, including multiplication tables.
At EYFS, Nursery will provide parents with nursery rhymes and counting songs and Reception will provide a maths focus, linked to what the children are doing in class that term.
All KS1 and KS2 children will have access to Mathletics, an online maths portal, which allows the class teacher to tailor maths games to the needs of the children. We have invested in this resource as it has a proven record of raising standards in mathematics. This can be accessed via the Internet by pupils at home but there will also be a weekly lunchtime session on each site for pupils to access Mathletics at school if necessary. We expect all pupils to access Mathletics at home each week and this will be monitored by the class teachers. Practical activities such as weighing cooking ingredients, handling real money and familiarising children with measures are also of great value and encouraged.
Staff, pupils and parents all acknowledge the importance of reading for pleasure and want to promote this as much as possible! We ask children to read daily and for this to be logged in Reading Records and signed by parents. For those children that are still on the reading scheme, we expect pupils to read the book sent home but we also encourage the reading of other texts. Reading a novel to your child is a great way to develop their vocabulary!
In Nursery, children will be sent home word writing practice as appropriate.
In Reception, children will also be sent high frequency words on coloured paper to practise reading.
In KS1 and 2, children will receive a set of spellings from their teacher fortnightly (weekly in Year 6). There is no requirement for the children to record any work on these spellings anywhere- the children learning the spellings so they can be applied confidently should be the focus. The homework book is used as a communication book- with spellings glued in and comments written by parents or teachers when appropriate to aid communication regarding homework. If these books are not returned to school, the spellings will be sent home on a sheet of paper.
Although creative homework is not a compulsory element, if children want to send in creative work they have completed at home, this will be shared and rewarded at school.
Homework may also include revision of key skills in preparation for end of year assessments in Year 2 and Year 6. This is particularly so by the end of Key Stage 2.
Children will always be given ‘reasonable’ time and expectations to complete a homework task. All teachers will monitor the completion and quality of homework and may, if necessary, liaise with parents where problems arise. Parents will be encouraged to share in the monitoring process and will be aware of expectations also. Parents will be kept informed of ‘regular’ homework routines and tasks such as days for spelling tests etc. Marking strategies will vary accordance to the task set but teachers will ensure this is appropriate and that all children complete homework on time. Children failing to do so on a regular basis will result in teachers taking the matter up with parents and if necessary referred to the Phase Leader or Head Teacher.
Homework is always acknowledged and monitored. Above all, children deserve and need feedback from their work. Teachers in turn will also welcome feedback from the children themselves and their parents. Homework completed well is acknowledged and praised. There may be issues arising from the work, which the teacher will follow up in lesson time. We recognise that children have individual learning styles, which means that some tasks can be completed in a number of different ways, while others demand a particular approach.
There are many websites containing highly educational material which can have a powerful effect on children's learning and links to some of these are accessible on our school website. A copy of the school’s Anti-cyber bullying policy is available from the school office and may also be found on the school website. The child’s safety is paramount in all matters regarding use of the internet and we advise parents and carers to always supervise their child’s access to the internet.
Parents and carers have a vital role to play in their child's education, and homework is an important part of this process. We ask parents and carers to encourage their child to complete the homework tasks that are set. We invite them to help their children as and when they feel it to be necessary and to provide them with the sort of environment that allows children to do their best. Parents and carers can support their child by providing a good working space at home, by enabling their child to visit the library regularly, and by discussing the work that their child is doing.
Ideally parents should read with their children every day to help them develop a love of books and stories and help them to grow in confidence. We ask parents and carers to sign their child’s Reading Record to show that they have heard their child read and discussed their books with them daily.
Finally, homework will be kept manageable. This must apply for both child and teacher. Emphasis must be on quality as opposed to quantity. Overburdening will understandably affect the quality of both learning and teaching – consequently, all homework will be developed within the boundaries of this policy.