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Homework at Secondary School

(38 Posts)
sloggies Sun 11-Sep-11 18:18:40

Do you check the actual homework, rather than just the fact that they have done it? If you check it, do you ask them to do more work on it, re-write if necessary? DD is 13, not overly keen....thought I would get MN opinions.

MaureenMLove Sun 11-Sep-11 18:31:32

I just check it's been done. No point in correcting errors or suggesting more work, as the teachers won't then know what their weaknesses are.

sloggies Sun 11-Sep-11 18:49:07

I know what you mean Maureen but not sure her teachers are that bothered, or too under stress, whatever....Trying to get the right balance between fulfilling potential/getting her to realise this is really important, and not nagging her to death!

Talker2010 Sun 11-Sep-11 19:43:54

not sure her teachers are that bothered

what on earth do you mean by this

CrosswordAddict Mon 12-Sep-11 12:30:26

I would be interested to know how much nagging is normal?
I have "nagged my two DCs to death" all weekend and I'll probably have another nagging session this evening because they still have some homework not completed. Is that normal? wink
The alternative is to take no notice at all and let the school sort it out with detentions etc and letters home etc sad Not sure whether I can face going down that route tbh.

Erebus Mon 12-Sep-11 18:38:07

"not sure her teachers are that bothered" might mean there is no evidence that homework is even looked at, let alone marked and commented upon.

Surprisingly, it does happen, you know!

pointydog Mon 12-Sep-11 18:40:10

No I don't check it. They know they have to do it and it is their responsibility. I have enough work of my own to do.

DrSeuss Mon 12-Sep-11 19:00:48

Please don't give major assistance on homework. I need to know if your child can do the work and if I am pitching stuff at the right level. I can't do this if Mum did it! If they really can't do it, please inform your child's teacher of this, preferably in a polite, mature fashion. If you have given substantial help, a note to tell me this would help. Please don't do as one parent recently did and allow your kid to skip school on the day it's due in then wait four months till parents'evening to complain!

roisin Mon 12-Sep-11 20:13:12

When they started doing homework I would check they'd put in enough effort. But by the time they've gone to secondary they have learned a fairly serious work ethic themselves anyway.

They usually come and show me when they've done it, and I find something in it to praise them on. I don't point out errors or omissions or suggest further work, because usually they've spent far longer than necessary on it anyway!

If a child of mine was being sloppy and slapdash with homework, then I would be insisting they re-did it properly.

Talker2010 Mon 12-Sep-11 20:28:43

Erebus ... if that were the case I think that I would be looking for another school

Erebus Tue 13-Sep-11 11:58:33

Ah, life is compromise! DS's school's homework setting is so erratic it isn't funny. Beginning of Y7 he had I'd say 80% of what was 'allowed' to be given, they the end, maybe 20%. Night after night with no homework whatsoever. I am 'glad' in that the school wasn't committing the worse crime of setting homework then not apparently looking at it, though I have noted that that does happen or it has been 'peer reviewed' rather to often...!- BUT because I am no expert, I rely on the fact the school is the best performing comp in the county, academically and seems to do well by all its pupils so I assume they know what they're doing with homework setting!

But I do wish the amount of h/w had been more consistent. By the last term of Y7 we were back to Y4 homework-avoidance tactics because he'd been allowed to get out of the habit by having none whatsoever for so many evenings per week!

CrosswordAddict Tue 13-Sep-11 12:04:52

I am sure someone somewhere has done loads of research on this but here goes ....
Is there a school in the UK which never sets homework and still gets fantastic exam results?
(I already know the answer to this one so no replies needed wink)
Right then, let's face it, to get good results we need to do HW so we might as well get on with it. blush
Getting the kids to see this is the hard bit.
Am off to the shops now to buy a Thesaurus for DD1 who needs it for HW tonight blush

gelatinous Tue 13-Sep-11 12:34:03

surely everyone has at least one teacher that virtually never looks at their homework? It's not worth changing school over.

Dc vary hugely in the amount of homework they do, and it seems to have little correlation to the amount set imo. I have one dc who habitually does all homework under the desk in the lesson before it's to be handed in as far as I can tell (absolutely always claims to have none if asked) and another who will work away at something or other whether it's been set or not. Maybe mine are at the extremes, but I doubt anything I did or didn't do would change either of them.

roisin Wed 14-Sep-11 20:39:52

This might be what you're looking for Crossword Addict!

CrosswordAddict Thu 15-Sep-11 09:05:31

Roisin Yes, see what you mean! Well, it's not going to change overnight unfortunately so we'll have to keep plodding on.
More HW last night and "Geog teacher says we've got to watch The Day after tomorrow film on E4"
Yes, so we end up staying up after 10 pm on a school night! sad
Said Geog teacher is a bachelor with no kids of his own! He's got his day of reckoning to come imho.

mnistooaddictive Thu 15-Sep-11 10:59:05

Peer review is the strategy that has been shown to have most impact on learning. If a teacher marks work, all they look at is the mark/grade and ignore the suggestions for improvement. If you get them to peer mark, and go through what they should have done, they learn from it. It is not just being lazy, it is an effective teaching strategy. Obviously, you need teacher marking too but not every piece of homework.
Most homework set is pointless and time filling. I would prefer my children to be reading or researching something of interest to them or taking part in a sporting activity.

Erebus Fri 16-Sep-11 08:59:31

Can you link to the 'peer review' evidence, please? I am genuinely interested.

I don't have a huge issue with it provided it is 'properly' done and not used as a substitute for teacher review. I am not sure I'd agree with 'most homework set is pointless and time filling'- I obv. can't comment for your school but I can at least see the point of practically all of the HW DS1 does get set. Yes, I do groan like where he gets, like right now, 3 weeks to write 3 chapters, an A4 page apiece on 'a Stuart king or queen', the seminal event of their reign and comment on how they interacted with Parliament, power and influence-wise. Assisting him with this will actually require quite a lot of input because at the start of Y8, he is still not be able to confidently construct the scaffolding on which to hang his thoughts. He will need some 'guided chatting' to help him divide what he's read into the 3 chapters, hopefully developing the skill of introducing a concept in one and building on it the next.

IF I 'let' my DSs 'research something of interest to them', DS2 would continue expanding his encyclopaedic knowledge of Pokemon and DS1, yet more ways to make origami guns..... grin

Anyway, as predicted, the HW setting has ramped right up again, to sometimes FOUR pieces an evening!

flatmouse Fri 16-Sep-11 09:08:23

(sorry to hijack but on same theme), what do teacher's suggest we do if our child has spent longer than required (based on the normal 30 min per homework rule of thumb) and has put loads of effort in and yet the work still looks a bit sloppy?
DS spent 1.5 hrs last night on a science poster, really thought about content - but unfortunately presentation lets him down - writing a bit messy, etc. 1) how do i help him resolve that for future, 2) should i have indicated time and effort put in in some way to the teacher, or is that PFB syndrome? (he's in Y7)

Erebus Fri 16-Sep-11 10:53:44

I'm no teacher but I'd be inclined to indicate to the teacher that you feel he'd put a lot of effort in, esp considering content etc (but I might not mention the actual 1.5 hours, tbh cos the stock reply is always 'your DC should stop after 30 mins' though you and I know that some h/w couldn't possibly be completed in that time and that everyone else who tried took way longer than that, they just haven't found a need to admit it! I am also of the belief that if a DC is 'in the zone' and is obviously on track with what's expected of them with a given piece AND isn't crying or seriously floundering without a clue, let them spend longer on it!).

If you tell the teacher the specific problem (it looks scruffy and badly presented BUT it was the result of proper application and research) it alerts the teacher to the fact your DS needs help with his presentational skills, not his attitude or application!

CrosswordAddict Fri 16-Sep-11 12:48:38

Not too sure about "peer review" tbh.
Some of our DDs peers can be downright destructive in their comments!
This has caused one DD a lot of confidence-loss over her written work in the past. If some other kid can pick holes in your spelling and presentation it can be very undermining. sad

mnistooaddictive Fri 16-Sep-11 14:03:06

I have taught at 4 different schools including some very high achieving ones and I still say a lot of homework is worthless. Comprehension questions for music and drama set for the sake of it. Posters in RE etc also pointless.

mnistooaddictive Fri 16-Sep-11 14:07:57

Peer review here and here

CrosswordAddict Fri 16-Sep-11 16:47:15

mnistooaddictive I am sure you are right in what you say. I can't open the links unfortunately. Computer is saying "no".
I am sure peer marking is fine and very useful too in most classroom situations.
It's just that my DD has one or two spiteful pupils in her teaching group. sad

EvilTwins Fri 16-Sep-11 19:15:43

I am a drama teacher and I hate setting homework. There literally is no point. Unless it's my KS4 or KS5 classes, and they have lines to learn for an assessed performance, it's just set for the sake of it. My school is hot on homework (setting and marking of) and it is the first thing parents moan about (that has been the case in all 3 schools I've taught in).

We had a fabulous INSET the other day, with the guy who wrote this and he said that it's a wonder we're not world leaders in poster design and production given how much time we make kids spend doing them as homework...

Erebus Fri 16-Sep-11 20:16:50

Eviltwins!- drama homework- DS (now Y8) has to occasionally learn some lines or give some due consideration to a range of feelings/emotions that a certain character may portray/exhibit or say at the next lesson. I have no trouble with this at all. The 'memory' bit is good, the 'public performance' bit is good. So there is so 'a point'. We as a family talk about it, we (me and DH) might act out our interpretation, along with DS2 (10). Though DS1 isn't heading for a career on the stage as far as I can see, it's all good and valuable education in its truest sense. And surely, some 'prep' means you can get right on into it at the next lesson!

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