Homework is an integral link in the chain of communication between school and home. Parents can monitor the progress of their children through continual reference to Homework diaries and liaison with teachers. This policy attempts to further strengthen positive home-school links through streamlining the processes involved. The homework policy of Athea N.S. has been formulated by staff with parental input, and endorsed by the Board of Management.
The need to redraft and amend the homework policy of the school can be attributed to the following;
- Further strengthening of home-school links
- Reinforcing the learning experienced by the child during the school day
- Ensuring clarity as to the recommended time to be spent on homework
Relationship to School Ethos
- It is the policy of the school to, as far as is possible, identify all the needs of the pupil and put in place measures to adequately cater for their needs
- The school also encourages the active involvement of parents in enabling their child to take responsibility and work independently. The homework policy of the school facilitates these ideals.
Aims and Objectives
The primary objectives of the policy are –
- To consolidate learning through reinforcement of class work
- To enable the children develop a sense of responsibility and independence
- To enhance self-esteem through the provision of a work menu that is doable
- To foster self-discipline and study skills
- To promote consistency and a uniform approach to homework across all classes
- To further develop links between home and school
- Homework Diary
- Blackboard / Whiteboard
- Work sheets, textbooks, folders, exercise copies etc.
It is school policy to assign appropriate class-related levels of homework as an important reinforcement in the learning process. Good study habits are fostered, independent learning is promoted and self-discipline is developed. Homework is normally given at the end of the school day. The following are the allocations for our school –
Junior Infants: – 0-10 minutes
Child friendly tasks are issued, usually words and sounds and a little letter formation. It is recommended that parents read to and with their children on a regular basis.
Senior Infants: – 10– 15 minutes
Reading and/or worksheets. The school attempts to maintain a balance
between oral, reading and written work. Paired reading is encouraged in infant classes.
Rang a hAon: – 15– 20 minutes
Reading, worksheet, sums, spellings.
Rang a Dó: – 20– 25 minutes
Reading, maths, sentences, worksheets.
Rang a Trí: – 30– 35minutes
Tables, maths, reading, worksheets.
Rang a Ceathar: – 30 – 40 minutes
Maths, oral, sentences, topical work.
Rang a Cuíg: – 40 – 60 minutes
Maths, Gaeilge, English, miscellaneous.
Rang a Sé: – 45– 75 minutes
Maths, English, Gaeilge, topical work.
- Homework is generally based on class related work or work already covered in class. It should contain a balance between reading, learning and writing. Time devoted to reading and learning is as important as written work
- The assigned homework is explained to children in advance. The different levels of the pupils are also taken into account
- Homework is given from Mondays to Thursdays and generally is not given at weekends unless it has been neglected during the week, or unless exceptional circumstances such as projects or book weeks occur
- Homework is not linked to behaviour but occasionally child/ren are rewarded with reduced homework if they have worked /behaved well
- It is not school policy to issue homework as an exercise in isolation. It will in most instances be an integral part of the subject being taught and be consistent.
- The Learning Support Teachers will occasionally give homework to their allocated pupils but only as a reinforcement of class work. Reading is routinely given as homework and should be accorded priority consideration
- If homework causes stress or worry to the child, parents are encouraged to convey these anxieties to the class teacher. If homework cannot be completed on a particular night, parents are asked to forward a written note
- Teachers check homework on a daily basis. Some homework may be self correcting. Children who do not complete homework satisfactorily may be required to re do this work during lunch break. Parents are advised to supervise and check homework nightly
- All children have a homework diary which parents are required to sign. The homework diary acts as a means of communication between class teacher and parent
- “Homework off” may be given at a teachers discretion. In general, all school homework will encompass a wide spectrum of learning experiences such as reading, writing, tables, spelling, learning ‘by heart’, drawing, collecting information, colouring and finishing class work.
Procedures for Parents
- Provide suitable comfortable facilities
- Remove distractions – T.V. younger siblings etc
- Help child overcome difficulties through explanation
- Parents should not do the homework for their children
- Send a note to the class teacher if a problem arises. This can be done through the homework diary
- Check and sign homework diaries
- Notify the class teacher if time spent on homework exceeds the recommended time
- As children tire towards late evening, encourage the completion of homework as early as possible
- Discourage morning homework
- Parents should have a stock of rulers, pencils, rubbers, table books etc. available should the need arise
- In-class corrections
- Checking homework diaries
- Parent – Teacher meetings
- Teacher designated tests
- Pupil profiling
- Teacher observation
- Feedback from parents and pupils
- General air of satisfaction
Roles and Responsibilities/Implementation
All stakeholders have a role to play in the implementation of this policy from pupils / parents/teachers right up to Board of Management.
The policy was ratified by the Board of Management and communicated to all parents.
The Essential Parents Guide to the Primary school years. – Brian Gilsenan
Your Child in the Primary school – INTO
Your Child’s Learning – DES Primary School Curriculum