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Learning at home is an essential part of the good education to which our children are entitled. It is not just about re-enforcing learning in the classroom, although this is important.
A good, well organised homework programme, helps young people develop skills and attitudes they will need for successful, independent, lifelong learning.
As a broad guideline, students are normally set one piece of homework per subject per week. As students progress from Key Stage 3 into Key Stage 4, the duration and intensity of homework increases. In GCSE years, it is more likely that at least an hour a week will be set in GCSE subjects, and be more likely to adhere examination specifications and the practising of past examination questions.
In practical subjects, students are likely to stay on after school to complete work in school such as drama rehearsals and technology artefacts. Please speak to the Head of Faculty if you require further information.
Why is homework important?
- It can help pupils to make rapid progress in learning.
- It can allow pupils to develop the practice of working on their own without the constant presence of the teacher or other pupils; they are also undisturbed by bells and the constraints of the timetable. This prepares pupils in Key Stage 3 for the demands of examination work later in their education.
- Work at home can provide the quiet and private conditions needed for creative and thoughtful work of all kinds.
- It can allow valuable practice of skills learned in the classroom.
- It can allow pupils to use materials and other sources of information that are not always available in the classroom.
- It can involve parents and others in the pupils’ work for their mutual benefit.
- It can give opportunities for long term research and other work.
- It can form an important part of the pupils’ notes.
- It gives pupils valuable experience of working to deadlines and facilitates staff with their marking schedules.
- It forms a link with the methods of study crucial to success at Secondary School.
The nature of the homework
Every faculty in the school sets homework each week and the amount set will increase as the pupil moves through the Key Stages. The exact amount expected of pupils is set out in the Curriculum Information Booklets, which are published and distributed to every pupil and their parents/carers at the beginning of the academic year.
The nature of the homework will vary between different groups, subjects and topics of study. Homework may include the following:
- Reading, writing, spelling.
- Competing a project. This may involve research and producing work using computers. Students are always welcome to use computers before school, at lunchtimes and after school if there is not one available for their use at home.
- Practical work – model making, drawing, finding items to bring into the classroom.
- Completing an exercise to practise, enforce or apply aspects of the class work.
How does the school help pupils to organise their homework?
- Students and parents are able to see what homework tasks are coming up, access details and any linked resources through their smartphone or the internet. Pupils may have to complete homework for the following day or may be given an extension to complete homework, depending on the task.
- Instructions concerning homework are clear to everyone in the class and all pupils have plenty of time to copy down what is expected.
- Homework is marked regularly and there is a response which is constructive and helpful to the pupil.
- Tutors regularly check that homework is being completed.
How is homework monitored?
- Parents can check homework that has been set online. They can feed back to the form tutors if they are concerned about the homework for any reason.
- Form tutors check that homework is being completed every week.
- Heads of Years check homework regularly at calendared intervals and report their findings to Heads of Faculty and Senior Leadership Team (SLT).
- The Key Stage Co-ordinators and SLT also check homework regularly and feed back to Heads of Faculty, who then discuss issues with their team members.
How can parents help with homework?
- Check the homework that is being set online regularly.
- Help your child to organise time well so that things are not left to the last minute or even forgotten.
- Try to make sure that there are suitable working conditions at home.
- Take a positive and active interest in your child’s work at home rather than just insisting that it is done. The curriculum information booklet explains how parents can help specifically in each subject.
- Let us know if there are problems with homework that you cannot solve. Please contact the form tutor in the first instance.
Failure to hand in homework
We expect homework to be produced on time. This gives pupils valuable experience of working to deadlines and facilitates staff with their marking schedules. If homework is not given in, appropriate action will be taken:
- Subject teacher will discuss with pupil the reasons why homework has not been completed. Subject teachers may inform tutors who may contact parents to seek their support.
- A “Cause for Concern” slip may be written out – copies of these go to Form Tutor, Faculty Head and Head of Year.