Why is homework so important?
Homework bridges the gap between learning at school and learning at home. It reinforces work undertaken in class. It helps develop skills such as research and time management.
Homework helps to establish the habits of study, concentration and self discipline. Parents/caregivers have the opportunity to see the progress of their child. Homework provides challenges and stimulus to gifted and talented children.
The basic rules of homework are that it:
- is appropriate for each student's age and ability
- takes into account students' other commitments, such as sport, cultural activities and home responsibilities
- takes into account technology such as email and the Internet so that students without access are not disadvantaged.
Four types of homework
- Practice Exercises help students to remember and practise newly acquired skills – such as memorising mathematical tables, practising spelling words, writing and reading for pleasure.
- Preparatory Homework requires students to source and read background information to prepare them for future lessons on a specific subject – such as reading an article on the Gold Rush in preparation for a lesson in Australian history.
- Extension Assignments encourage students to pursue knowledge individually and imaginatively. Assignments may include writing a book review, researching local news or retrieving items from the Internet.
- Interest Homework involves students in household chores, shopping, playing a musical instrument, learning a new skill, playing a board game etc.
Homework for Kindergarten – Year 2
In general, your child will not be expected to complete formal homework in Kindergarten. However, there are things you can do at home to help your child make the most of what they learn in Kindergarten. Reading to children at home and involving them in family activities will greatly assist the development of their skills in literacy, numeracy and problem solving.
Home reading will commence early in Term 1. Class teachers will send home readers for the children to "read" with parents.
In Years 1 and 2 some formal homework is usually set. For example, students may be asked to complete simple maths activities on Mathletics and spelling using Soundwaves, or to complete an activity sheet.
The Home Reading Program will continue in Years 1 and 2. Children are expected to read for 10 minutes each night. Other activities including spelling should only take 5-10 minutes per night.
Homework for Years 3-6
Homework in Years 3-6 will be varied and students will be expected to work more independently. However, teachers will still provide guidance and assistance to students having difficulties completing their homework.
Much of the homework will be in English, Mathematics and History. However, it can be set across all areas of the curriculum.
Children are expected to read for at least 20 minutes each day and to spend another 20 minutes on other homework activities.
What can parents/caregivers do to help?
- Take an active interest in your child's homework.
- Support your child in setting aside time each day for homework.
- Provide a dedicated place for homework and study if possible.
- Assist teachers to monitor homework by signing completed work if requested, and be aware of the amount of homework set.
- Communicate with teachers any concerns about the nature of homework or your child's approach to homework.
- Encourage your children to read and take an interest in current events.
- Alert the school to any domestic circumstances or extra curricular activities which may need to be taken into consideration when homework is being set or marked.