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Homework Policy

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Presentation Primary School
Fermoy

Homework Policy

Introductory Statement
This policy document was reviewed and amended in September 2010. It was drawn up following discussion by all members of teaching staff.

Rationale
Necessity for clarification and formulisation of existing policy on homework

Relationship to characteristic spirit of the school
Presentation Primary School seeks to enable each child to develop his/her potential. Homework should encourage pupils to work independently and to take responsibility for their assignments.

Aims:
To benefit pupil learning
To consolidate work being done at school

To keep parents in touch and involved in their children’s work
To promote a similar approach to homework across all classes
To develop and encourage the habit of independent study

HOMEWORK

Homework fosters independence, self-reliance, self-esteem, co-operation and responsibility and life-long learning. It is an essential part of primary education as it re-enforces what children learn in school. It provides a link between teacher and parent and encourages parental involvement in their child’s education.

In general, homework is meant to be achievable by a child working on their own to the best of their ability. It is normally prepared by the teacher in class. It can be used to practice what is done in school or can be designed to challenge children’s ability and provide opportunities for creativity.

The Class Teacher and Support Teachers discuss and agree appropriate homework to be assigned to children receiving additional support.


How often is homework given?

Junior Infants-homework begins after the Halloween break.
Senior Infants-homework begins end of September/start of October.
First-Sixth Class-homework begins in September

Homework is given on Mondays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays but not on Fridays with certain exceptions:
If homework has been neglected during the week
In senior classes some project work is undertaken at weekends.

Sometimes at the discretion of the class teacher or the principal, children are given ‘homework off’ as a treat or as acknowledgement of some special occasion.

Homework Content

Usually, homework contains a balance between reading tasks, learning tasks and written tasks. This balance is not always possible and can vary considerably from day to day. However, it should be noted that homework time devoted to reading and learning is as important as time devoted to written work.
Homework will regularly contain reading, spellings, tables, written work, pieces to be ‘learned by heart’, drawing/colouring, collecting information/items and finishing work started in class. Children often feel that reading and ‘learning by heart’ is not real homework. Parents can play an important role in listening to reading and items to be learned, ensuring this work is done well.


Duration of Homework

The following are guidelines for time spent at homework. Different children will complete the same homework in different lengths of time. Time spent will vary from day to day and also from the beginning to the end of the school year. It is important to remember that it is the quality and not the quantity of homework that matters.

The following are general guidelines:
Infants 10 to 20 minutes
Rang 1 and 2 20 to 30 minutes
Rang 3 and 4 30 to 40 minutes
Rang 5 and 6 40 to 60 minutes

Pupils should:
enter homework accurately in homework diary
ensure they take home relevant books and copies
complete homework assignments to the best of their ability
present written work neatly

Parents/Guardians should:
Encourage a positive attitude towards homework in all subjects from an early age
Encourage children to work independently in so far as is possible. Resist over-helping or completing homework for children
.
Encourage children to organise themselves for homework. Have all books and materials to hand. The pupil should have the Homework Journal open to tick off work as it is completed
Agree a suitable time for doing homework
Provide a quiet place, suitable work surface, free from distractions, interruptions and T.V.
Monitor children to ensure homework is being done and concentration is being maintained
Encourage good presentation and neatness within a reasonable time.
Check children’s homework even if they attend homework clubs.
Sign the homework diary, checking that all homework is complete
Check that the child has all necessary books, homework journal, copies, pencils, dictionary, P.E. clothes etc. for the next school day
Communicate difficulties to the teacher using the homework journal

Teachers should:
Set homework, review assignments and provide feedback to students
Monitor homework to help identify pupils with special difficulties

How often do teachers monitor homework?

Ideally, teachers check homework on a daily basis. However, with large class numbers, it is not always possible to check each child’s homework every day. As children get older and learn to work independently, some items of homework are checked less often, e.g. every second day or once a week. Some items of homework (and class work) may be checked by children themselves, under the direction of the teacher. This can be a useful part of the learning process for children as it promotes responsibility and self esteem.

What happens when homework is not done?

When homework is not done regularly the teacher contacts parents with a view to resolving the situation. If the situation continues, then the matter is brought to the attention of the Principal who will contact the parent(s) and arrange a meeting to discuss how the matter can be resolved.



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