Hackles raised by note in dd's homework diary.

(54 Posts)
conistonoldwoman Sat 06-Oct-12 23:15:14

my year 3 DD has never been easily compliant in the homework department. Apart from encouraging her to read at home I am an anti homework parent , especially for primary age. She also has the obligatory spellings to learn. She'll pay them a token visit and will probably get half of them right in here test. She didn't do too well last week so teacher has written a note saying she is concerned with her approach to homework and she will be tested again on the words. She had asked my DD if she found her hw difficult but DD replied no , she just preferred to play. Teacher said that we could talk about hw issues at parents evening. As I don't agree with hw , especially the death by worksheet stuff that comes home, I can't really see how
I can help .
Also don't know if I should force DD to work on spellings . Maybe bribery will be help. Don't want her to suffer for my principles.

McPhee Sat 06-Oct-12 23:18:38

Do you want her to learn?

Do you want her to have a passion for learning?

Do you want her to take/follow instruction?

queenofthepirates Sat 06-Oct-12 23:19:30

I'm not sure I fully understand-can you explain why you're anti-homework?

Whitecherry Sat 06-Oct-12 23:22:13

Your principles are your own problem, nothing to do with your dd.

Floralnomad Sat 06-Oct-12 23:23:08

Surely the bottom line here is if you send your DC to a school where HW is given then you have a responsibility to do it . Have you not signed one of those school/ parent/ child contracts that schools hand out nowadays . TBH it really wouldn't take too much time to practice some spellings , we used to do them on school run at that age .

EverybodysSpookyEyed Sat 06-Oct-12 23:23:53

Spellings don't take long.

Come home, have a snack, practise spellings for 5-10 mins then off to play

conistonoldwoman Sat 06-Oct-12 23:25:30

I refer you to posters on the please let's get rid of homework thread, about 7 below mine. I belong in that camp!

ExitPursuedByAaaaaarGhoul Sat 06-Oct-12 23:27:59

Why would you not want her to learn how to spell?

gallicgirl Sat 06-Oct-12 23:28:04

Homework reinforces what the child has learned at school. Repetition is needed to ensure something has been learned properly.
Homework also helps the teacher to make sure every child has grasped a concept before moving onto the next item. It also makes it easier for the teacher to spot pupils who need extra support.

I don't see why you wouldn't want your child to do homework.

MaryMotherOfCheeses Sat 06-Oct-12 23:29:00

Well your daughter's school doesn't belong to that camp.

So you're going to say she does one thing and her school is going to say she does something else.

It's going to end up very confusing for her.

Funnylittleturkishdelight Sat 06-Oct-12 23:29:47

Do you read with her? Write stories with her? Could you incorporate the spellings into play?

purplehouse Sat 06-Oct-12 23:31:15

I think that YABU.

Your attitude towards homework being given or not given is irrelevant. The fact is that you need to work with her current teacher - in partnership, not in conflict! My eldest is y2 and youngest yR and I always make sure both dc do exactly what the teacher has asked for, regardless of whether I consider it appropriate or not. I think you are showing your dd that it's ok to disrespect the teacher.

Why ever would you not help your dd learn her spellings? In time she may be upset or embarrassed about getting lots of them wrong. I do the school spellings every week day with ds. It takes one minute and he always gets them all correct despite not being anywhere near the top of the class in general. he is justifyably proud of himself for this.

I think you should change your attitude towards the teacher. She must be furious with you.

EverybodysSpookyEyed Sat 06-Oct-12 23:31:27

I know a few schools that do all homework in school time (they set aside the last 45 mins of each day).

maybe if you have strong principles it would be worth considering a move for her?

Floralnomad Sat 06-Oct-12 23:32:47

I also belong in that camp which is why my DD no longer goes to school. You can't have it both ways , if you don't like it either find a school that doesn't give HW (if such a place exists ) or home educate .

picnicbasketcase Sat 06-Oct-12 23:32:49

I don't think homework always backs up what they've learned at school. My DS's homework is usually some random crap that I end up doing. I hate homework being given to primary age children. They might as well just hand it straight to the patents and tell them to get it done.

Wolfiefan Sat 06-Oct-12 23:34:25

Agree with purple and gallic.
Her test. Not here.

Casmama Sat 06-Oct-12 23:40:53

If it was a principle of yours then you would have approached the school and discussed it with them. It seems like you are making excuses for being lazy and not helping your dd and letting her not do her homework. Make an effort.

defineme Sat 06-Oct-12 23:42:00

I think 'forcing' is a bit strong. Can't you just make it fun? I put each word on an a4 sheet and draw a funny picture to go with it usually with dd in it-she now does the drawings because she thinks it's funny and we stick them around the house.
DD loves salty peanuts and isn't keen on reading so we do 'peanut reading' -5 minutes on a timer=10 peanuts.
Timestables are fundamental to maths and need to be learnt by rote. We play times tables cd in car/at home

As for the worksheets-just get ebverything out ready and get it over with asap-we do it in pyjamas on saturday mornig to get it out the way.

SavoyCabbage Sat 06-Oct-12 23:47:10

You should have gone to a different school. You are setting her up for a difficult time at school.

My very dear friend is against housework. Really, not funnily. She does not think people should spend their lives doing things that are 'drudgery'. So her son has nowhere to sleep as his bed is under a pile of stuff and he has a McDonald's every night. Every night.

deleted203 Sat 06-Oct-12 23:56:11

I'm anti homework at primary too I'm afraid. Seriously - do any of you lot remember having to do HW aged 5 - 11? Cos I didn't. Neither did we get anywhere near the amount of homework at secondary school that my older ones brought home. And I still managed to get a First Class Honours Degree. I want my primary aged children to enjoy their childhood, not spend time after school doing more schoolwork. I might chant times tables in car (or spellings) but I'm certainly not going to make a Y2 child sit and fill in a worksheet after school or at weekends. My DS wants to run around and play after having to sit still all day and work at school. He doesn't want to do even more learning.

steppemum Sun 07-Oct-12 00:23:58

I totally agree with you about hw, most of the worksheets that come home are a waste of space (and I say that as a teacher)

But for me the exceptions are reading, spelling and times tables, which need repetition and can best be done one on one for a few minutes each day at home. I firmly believe that as a teacher. As a parent of 3 I hate all homework!

But there is an issue here of how you are representing the school to your dd, amnd how you are teaching her she doesn't have to listen to her teacher.

I have been known to say to my dcs. Yes this worksheet is easy, but homework is part of school life and I expect you to do it. My ds kicks off about it too.

I am wondering where and how you think she will learn to spell, if she isn't doing the work of learning to spell? Mine hate doing spelling at home. The deal is that if they get 10/10 then they don't have to learn them at home (they do practise them at school too, so if they work hard at school, they don't need to bring it home). My dd has this week been made to do hers at home as she got 6/10 last week and the week before, so now she has to do them at home. ds gets them all right, his choice to focus at school so he doesn't need extra practise.

Jinsei Sun 07-Oct-12 00:51:21

I don't agree with homework for primary schoolchildren, but I accept that dd has homework set by her teacher and she therefore needs to do it. If I felt strongly enough, I'd have a private word with the teacher about it, but I don't think it's reasonable just not to do it. It doesn't send the right message to your dd at all.

Devora Sun 07-Oct-12 01:08:13

I'm unconvinced by primary school homework, but our job is to make life easier for our kids at school, not harder.

piprabbit Sun 07-Oct-12 01:17:41

How does your DD feel when she struggles with her spellings in class?
Children are often very aware of the sort of marks their peers are gettings (especially if the class are marking each other's tests as happens in my DDs school).
It is one thing wanting to skip HW and play at home, it is quite another having to deal the consequences of that choice in class.

OpheliasWeepingWillow Sun 07-Oct-12 05:15:31

You are singling her out amongst her peers as she will fall behind.

You are not supporting her education.

You are giving her horribly confusing messages about authority.

And all because you don't agree with homework?

I can only respect such hard headed opposition to logic.

nooka Sun 07-Oct-12 05:42:04

It's highly unlikely to make her dd fall behind though. There is no great evidence that homework for primary age children makes any difference at all, not even learning spellings. Particularly as most spellings lists (at least those we've experienced) are arbitrary. We only once had a teacher that used a scheme so that it was word patterns being learned rather than words you might possibly encounter this week type lists.

nagynolonger Sun 07-Oct-12 06:36:32

Mine are all well past the primary stage but I do agree that most homework at primary is a waste of time. I never had hw until secondary age and my eldest 3 DC had very little. The younger 3 had much more and I really cannot see what good it did. They all did their hw at secondary school and revised for GCSE and A levels.

Reading books and talking to DC about the story is very important and most people do that from babyhood. That was part of our daily routine so I never considered that hw.
I always did the spellings at home too. Three of my DC had no problems they knew how to spell most words without any effort.......If you have DC like that spellings homework is no problem. My other 3 DS are dyslexic and we spent hours on spellings. A nightmare for me and them! Even if they managed to learn a few words for a test they had forgotten them by the following week.
Times tables are important when they are a bit older. They need to know them so just do it with them. I bought one of those singy-songy tapes/cds.....drives you mad but all mine learnt their tables at home.

The work sheet homework for numeracy and literacy is a PITA. These things should be done at school. Primary DC should be playing and doing other things after school. They don't need to get into the habit of doing regular hw.

nagynolonger Sun 07-Oct-12 07:12:42


Do DC really mark each others spellings?

At our primary the TA always marked the spelling and tables tests. I'm pleased my sons' classmates didn't mark theirs.

The ones that did well and got them all correct were all acknowledged by the teacher when the books were given back, and they had some sort of star award for getting 100% for three consecutive weeks. My dysexic DS never got a star but that's just the way it is. Like I say we always did try to learn spellings at home but for some it doesn't work.

bowerbird Tue 09-Oct-12 14:02:18

OP I completely agree with you on the principle of homework for primary school children. For so many many reasons.

However, as other posters have pointed out, your DD is attending a school and the school issues homework. You can do spellings for 5 minutes a day before school and it doesn't impinge on after school playtime.

You will most likely have to compromise your principles, for two reasons. One, it sounds as if your daughter could do with the extra spelling practice, and two, you and your daughter have to maintain a good relationship with the school.

bowerbird Tue 09-Oct-12 14:03:50

Nagy, yes some schools do that - ours did. I think it becomes less of an issue in higher years, but say, in Y2, it's dreadful - so divisive and humiliating for kids who are struggling.

KCB01 Thu 11-Oct-12 13:35:30

Homework is NOT compulsory, sends absolutely the wrong message in terms work/life balance, and people who are anti homework are usually far less lazy than those who are not. I have always been upfront with my school that if my children want to work on set homework in their own personal time, then I will support them totally. However, it is their time, and if they do not, then I will not support any punishment for something that is unethical and unjustifiable. We work closely with the school to understand the subjects and topics that they are learning, and I am always looking out for ways in which to apply the information from the school into our everyday lives. That is the way to enthuse children into learning because they want to. Homework is just plain wrong - teachers unions, the past leader of the national pta associations, university studies, all suggest that homework does nothing to improve children's ability to learn and indeed some studies indicate an adverse link, particularly with primary school children. If nothing else, the imposition of homework is just rude. My children are told to work hard when at school, which they do. When they come home, that is family time. If I were to attempt to set them things to do during a lesson, then rightly the school would be justified in complaining that we should not be attempting to impose on their time. However, it appears that a school can dictate how our family spends its time outside of school. It just sends the wrong message. Most of the teachers I have spoken are also against homework, in some cases strongly so. The assumption by schools and government is that parents want homework (another assumption that is not necessarily correct - Most parents I speak with also dislike homework, but are scared to speak out). I am sick to death of being made to feel guilty and called lazy, when I spend more time working on how to engage my children in learning than many pro-homeworkers who often use homework as a way of absolving themselves from having to think about how their children learn. It's 'an easy way of occupying the kids'. Harsh? Maybe, but only as harsh as many of the earlier comments that made black and white assumptions that anyone who strongly knows how wrong homework is can only be lazy and uninterested in their childrens learning!

gaelicsheep Sat 16-Feb-13 01:30:52

I think some homework has a purpose and some does not. Reading is important, and so is learning spellings. These are skills that take time to develop and imo time spent at home is worthwhile. What I object to is pointless busy work that should be done at school. " Design a poster ", or write about something we've already written about at school.

Pointless homework is often delayed or goes undone in our house, especially in the past when DS was struggling with written work and getting very very stressed by the tasks. I set the rules at home, not the school. If I think it's counterproductive, or DS is busy with more interesting things, then tough.

differentnameforthis Sat 16-Feb-13 08:11:22

It's all well & good that YOU don't believe in homework, but you are doing your daughter a huge disservice.

Do you want her to learn?
Is it that you think all learning /teaching should be done in schools?
Is it that you can't be bothered to help her?

part of being a parent is helping & teaching our children so they carry into adulthood, the stuff they are going to need to get on with life. By refusing to help her & encourage her to learn, you are denying her that!

My daughter has reading & spellings, takes on average 20mins a day! I also test her randomly too.

Do your daughter a favour, help her teachers to TEACH HER!!!

TotallyBS Sat 16-Feb-13 08:35:04

How can people be strongly against spellings? Its 5mins while in the car for fecks sake.

At primary DC had a friend who would often get 2/10 for spellings and this was from the 'easy' list. In the parents eyes, their DS was 'artistic' so they didn't want to stifle his creativity with stuff like spellings.

He left Year 6 with mostly KS L3. Maybe the boy will go onto Oxbridge and be the anecdote for an anti homework parent. Or maybe he will be the anecdote for some newspaper article about employers complaining about illiterate job applications.

BreadForMyBREADGUN Sat 16-Feb-13 08:38:16

Have you got a link to the homework thread?

I'm anti homework too and don't understand why, if its only 5 mins of spellings,why it can't be done in school.

HecateWhoopass Sat 16-Feb-13 08:44:42

There's the useless homework that we'd all like to see the back of and then there's the important stuff. I think supporting her to learn the important stuff matters.

But more importantly, right now the message you are giving her is that it doesn't matter what the teacher says and she doesn't have to do something that the teacher has asked her to do. That is NOT a good attitude to give your child.

When she is at secondary, and her gcses are looming, and she won't work outside the classroom, and maybe has an attitude that the teacher's views don't matter - how well do you think she's going to do?

At what point are you going to change from 'bugger the homework' to 'do the homework'. How will that transition go for her, do you think?

You have to think long term. Who she is now is not who she will remain. Everything she experiences now will shape her. It's really not about a few spellings, when you look at it. Is it?

Sparklingbrook Sat 16-Feb-13 08:46:45

This thread is from last October confused

BreadForMyBREADGUN Sat 16-Feb-13 08:50:30

Oh FFS. When will MN start highlighting old threads...

seeker Sat 16-Feb-13 08:53:04

There's lots of evidence to support the view that learning spellings is largely a waste of time in terms of actually learning to spell, and many schools no longer do it. Many children can get 100% for a spelling test and not be able to spell the same word when actually writing a sentence.

However, if homework is set it ought to be done- parents should be on the same side as the school.

Sparklingbrook Sat 16-Feb-13 08:53:42

They need to do something Bread.

seeker Sat 16-Feb-13 08:54:36

Oops blush
Still interesting, though!

Sparklingbrook Sat 16-Feb-13 08:55:21

I totally agree with your post as well seeker. smile

TotallyBS Sat 16-Feb-13 09:17:23

I can never understand why some MNetters can spend hours discussing baby names or whether some DP is a twat or whether some MIL is a bitch AND then come on here and argue about 5 min in the car during the school, per week.

seeker Sat 16-Feb-13 09:19:22

Would rather the 5 minutes was doing something purposeful. Spellings aren't. But as I said, parents should be in the same side as the school.

inadreamworld Sat 16-Feb-13 09:23:33

Have you considered homeschooling her? As a teacher I have to say that you have to follow school policies if you send your child to school. But no reason to send her to school if you want her to learn in a different way. Some homework worksheets ARE rubbish! Maybe another school would be more suitable also?

seeker Sat 16-Feb-13 09:30:34

And the anti work sheet thing puzzles me a bit too. If your child had a proper book with all the worksheets bound into it in printed rather than photocopied form, people would be really impressed at the lovely textbook their child brought home. But it would cost loads of money, and they would get lost...so they get photocopied sheets- the same thing, but cheap.

Sparklingbrook Sat 16-Feb-13 09:31:18

DS2 loves a worksheet for homework. grin

gaelicsheep Sat 16-Feb-13 14:20:27

Blimey, it was on the first page of the topic. Never looked at the date!

gaelicsheep Sat 16-Feb-13 14:23:22

inadreamworld - as a teacher, you think school policies should take over family life outside of school hours? Like a whole weekend spent arguing about homework with a child who, quite understandably has better things to do than waste their time re-doing stuff they've already done at school. My DS is 6, that's the perspective I'm coming from.

englishteacher78 Tue 16-Jul-13 05:49:38

We did spelling and dictation tests every week (spellings were from a scheme so linked by type). I also had reading and occasional project work which I put a lot of effort into. In fact, I loved primary school homework. I wish I'd had it more regularly in year 6 as I found it difficult moving to 1-2 hours a night at secondary.

MrRected Tue 16-Jul-13 05:56:12

Now I have heard it all.

Why on earth are you promoting under performance and dismissing a teacher who is looking out for the best interests of your child? Why is it a good thing that she's not getting her words right in her spelling test.

My most objective advice to you would be to home school your child. You clearly have no respect for the schools rules.

Mommaloca Tue 19-Nov-13 22:37:27

Think about all the different opinions posted here, how can a teacher possibly please all parents? A teacher has to use their knowledge of what their class needs to set home learning tasks. I suggest a little more consideration of this and more communication with the teaching professional, they are only trying to do the best for your child after all.

justanotherbiscuit Sat 21-Jun-14 13:05:50

I love helping my dd with homework. And I know she is benefiting from it. There has been occasions where she's came home from school a little bit frustrated with a sum/ spelling and we've worked on it together and she's went to school the following day confident about it. That's the point of homework.

Her teachers are great, but her education is my responsibility as well!

I'm sorry and I'm sure I'll take a flaming for this, but I think it's lazy when a parent says they're anti-homework .

justanotherbiscuit Sat 21-Jun-14 13:08:39

Sorry I had no idea this thread was so old. Usually it pre warns about old threads.

Old news ,move on!

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