Christmas Vacation homework?

Discussion in 'Elementary Education Archives' started by Dalrose, Nov 28, 2005.

  1. Dalrose

    Dalrose Rookie

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    Nov 28, 2005

    Hi,
    First year, first grade teacher. Christmas vacation is coming up in 3 week and they will have two weeks off. Do i give homework? Do any of you do? Don't know what to do.
     
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  3. wdwteach

    wdwteach Cohort

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    Nov 28, 2005

    I do not give required homework. But I will make a page of ornaments and in each ornament will be a suggestion. The challenge is to see how many ornaments you can do over the holidays. Some things to do will be - catch a snowflake on your tongue, bake cookies, count houses with holiday lights, and maybe a few academic things as well.
     
  4. leighbball

    leighbball Virtuoso

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    I teach 3rd grade this year, and I will give homework. Not a lot, but something. When I taught 2nd grade last year, I gave homework out as well. But thats just me:)
     
  5. leighbball

    leighbball Virtuoso

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    It might be good to talk to your team members and find out their plans too...that way you can be consistent:)
     
  6. jcg

    jcg Cohort

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    I send each student a holiday letter with mistakes in it and tell them my computer broke and if they find the the mistakes and bring the letter back corrected they will get a reward! Otherwise no homework, I don't have homework, why should they?
     
  7. MrsC

    MrsC Multitudinous

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    I don't give homework (except to have a safe and happy holiday and to come back to school with no broken bones!;) ) I really resented it a last year when my daughter's homework over the 2 week break was to read a 150-page novel and write 1/2 page summaries of each chapter. Ourholiday was not very happy towards the end!
     
  8. GlendaLL

    GlendaLL Aficionado

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    Yesterday I subbed in a 4th grade classroom. The teacher had given a worksheet for the students to complete over the Thanksgiving break. About half of them did not return the worksheet. The teacher might as well have saved the paper!
     
  9. kinderkids

    kinderkids Virtuoso

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    I think if most parents are like me............I am so excited to be on vacation, and so are my kids.........I fail to check the backpack for any homework there may be and don't ask the kids about it either.. And then it is the night before we get back and we realize that homework needs to be done. Kids choose not to remember they have homework as well. I personally don't like homework over a long vacation like that.......the only thing I ask parents to remember to do is to read to their child daily........and that pretty much is my homework policy all year anyhow.
     
  10. mika

    mika Rookie

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    Our principal tells us to send something home with the students to keep them engaged while school is out. It may be a book report, some other type of project, or just a packet. And yes it is busy work because most students don't bring it back.
     
  11. Upsadaisy

    Upsadaisy Moderator

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    I will just have them read.
     
  12. Miss W

    Miss W Phenom

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    I like jcg's idea. Not something that has to come back. I do have homework over the holidays though. Packing and getting ready for the next semester.
     
  13. djmondi

    djmondi Comrade

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    Nov 29, 2005

    This is my first year teaching and I am going to "bribe" my students to work on their times tables. We have a county test two weeks after we return from break. That gives me exactly 5 weeks to teach multiplication and division! I am going to promise those who can ace a test when we return on multiplication facts something big - like ice cream sundaes. It won't be mandatory, but they seem to want to learn them so bad that I hope it just motivates them to continue those two weeks we are off!
     
  14. hanvan

    hanvan Connoisseur

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    I personally do not want to do any work myself over the holidays so I am not going to be giving the kids anything either. I just want to hang out with my family and thats all I want them to do...maybe I will tell them to read. I also find that after a long break some forget things but many come back and seem to understand things better. Its like they grow up a little over the holidays. So its NO for me.
     
  15. ChristyF

    ChristyF Moderator

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    I assign homework over the holidays, it's usually just reading. Since we won't be able to finish our social studies unit before the holidays I will assign study time for it. I know they probably won't spend a huge amount of time on it, but hopefully they will look at it often enough to keep it fresh in their minds.
     
  16. JaimeMarie

    JaimeMarie Moderator

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    If I had my own class I would not give homework!
    I think it's more stressful on the parents then the kids. And who wants to think about school on a vacation.
     
  17. leighbball

    leighbball Virtuoso

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    I guess I'm the bad guy then, but I still plan on assigning something. I usually give them a writing prompt that pertains to their vacation and one math activity/worksheet.
     
  18. 1stferg

    1stferg Comrade

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    I don't give homework over the Holidays, but I do make up a "snow day packet" We already had two snow days, in October! That has never happened before. Our snow days usually come in January and February. I send home a packet right before Christmas and tell the parents to only open it on a snow day. It has fun reading and math activities to help keep skills sharp.
     
  19. Dalrose

    Dalrose Rookie

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    Thanks for all the suggestions.
     
  20. MrsC

    MrsC Multitudinous

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    I love the "Snow Day Packet" idea!
     
  21. Miss W

    Miss W Phenom

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    Me too. I've never given homework over a holiday break, but this sounds like a good idea. The kids would have something to do if school is cancelled for any reasons.
     
  22. JaimeMarie

    JaimeMarie Moderator

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    I would loss it. LOL, but that is just because I'm organized at school and not at home.
     
  23. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

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    2nd grade, no homework- it's school policy not to give hw over weekends or holidays. Think about it---Are you being given work to do over the holiday?
     
  24. 1stferg

    1stferg Comrade

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    When I used to get them for my own kids they were hard to hang on to, too. LOL Right now, there is one corner of the living room I have not seen in about two weeks!

    I do it mainly for those parents who get bent out of shape when we miss a day or two of school.
     
  25. pamms

    pamms Comrade

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    Nov 30, 2005

    No way! I might suggest that they read...or like some of the others mentioned...a 'just for fun' idea, but I wouldn't even consider sending home an assignment. I break is supposed to be a break! ;-)
    Pam
     
  26. ChristyF

    ChristyF Moderator

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    :) I always have homework over the weekends and holidays, papers to grade, lessons, to write, working on my room, etc. Like I stated earlier. I send very little work, but I feel it helps keep them in the right frame of mind. For the social studies I'll send a note telling the parents for them to have the kids review it the weekend before we come back, the reading I hope they do off and on throughout the holiday.
     
  27. leighbball

    leighbball Virtuoso

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    I agree Christy. I always have work to do...weekends, holidays, etc. My district even gives out summer packets for math (like 20 pages long) and a reading list. Homework in the 3rd grade at my school is expected all the time, even over holidays. I agree that it is a break, but my kids will have a small something to do.
     
  28. Veritas

    Veritas Rookie

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    Don't do it! I loathed holiday work, as did my parents.
     
  29. hanvan

    hanvan Connoisseur

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    I used to do a lot of extra work on the weekends and holidays and I found it was consuming my life. Although I LOVE teaching I had to limit my time. I get to work an hour early and stay an hour after but I have a "stopping time". I leave school no matter what. There have been times when I would stay a little later but not too often. I read something every night. I also grade papers one night a week. The weekends are basicly mine now and I really try to keep it that way. We all need a break.
     
  30. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

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    Work on the holidays? BAH HUMBUG!!!!!
     
  31. TeacherC

    TeacherC Connoisseur

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    I was thinking of giving them something for extra credit or that was not mandatory...When I was in school, we got a homework packet that talked about what we did for Chrsitams...how many people were there, what we ate, if it was a turkey, how long was it in the oven, how much did it weigh, etc. It was all involving numbers. I loved going around and "interviewing" my family to ask different questions. That wouldn't work in my classroom since a lot of them don't celebrate...
     
  32. hanvan

    hanvan Connoisseur

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    Thats cute...not just a boring reading assignment or a worksheet
     
  33. heyMiss!

    heyMiss! Rookie

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    I'm a student teacher. My 3rd graders usually get a packet of 8-12 pages of L/A and Reading practice connected to the story they read in the Reader that week. Personally, I wouldn't use some of the assignments if I were the teacher because they aren't really engaging in active learning. But, I copied some really fun homework pages from Teacher's Helper for a Halloween packet and then a Thanksgiving packet and these replaced the usual humdrum stuff. The kids loved these fun things (including coloring, cutting & pasting, and mazes) and I had trouble keeping them from doing them too early! My CT thought they should have a packet over the long weekend to keep them out of their parents' hair or something, but some of the kids turned the packet back in before they even went on holiday! We will give them a fun one for X-mas as well...

    I think there are some kids who really love to do this stuff (I know I did...), so why not give them something fun but educational and leave it optional? If the parents want them out of their hair, they can have them do it; otherwise just toss it...
     
  34. Veritas

    Veritas Rookie

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    Ooh...fun things work.
     
  35. ohiosnshine

    ohiosnshine Rookie

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    I like the idea of having them do some fun activities! You could even tie in the "fun" ones to some academics...for example, have them write down all the fractions in the recipe they use when they're baking cookies, etc...
     
  36. cingy

    cingy Rookie

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    Oh my goodness! I agree with the person who said that she wants some time to relax and the kids should be granted the same. They are children and need down time, something we tend to forget in this culture saturated with making sure that "no child will be left behind" But we are hurting our children if we think that giving homework over a BREAK is going to make sure that no one will be left behind. Who are we kidding! Do I give homework? I bet you guessed the answer is an emphatic NO! However, I do mention that I will be reading over the vacation and ask if anyone else might do the same. And I do make sure that I leave out their journals just in case anyone might want to do some writing during the break.

    Sorry to have ranted. I just finished having a conversation with my son (who is in fifth grade) who says that school sucks and that he feels under so much pressure. He wants to feel like a kid...

    Thanks for listening.

    Karen
     
  37. ohiosnshine

    ohiosnshine Rookie

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    :eek: Wow, I definitely agree with you on that! Kids should not be stressing out over homework in 5th grade!! It is so important that we let our kids be kids...this is the only chance they get to be carefree. They'll be growing up and taking responsibility for the rest of their lives. Kids get tired of work just as we do, and they need their break as much as we teachers do! I know that there are some kids who love to do fun activities, though, so why not (as heyMiss said) give them something they can do if they (or their parents) choose. Otherwise, probably very little is lost.
    I also think it's an excellent idea to mention that you'll be reading over break, which will hopefully encourage them to as well.
     
  38. Miss W

    Miss W Phenom

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    I sent home a "Snow packet" yesterday with the kids. I put a cover letter on it for the parents stating that it was not required to be finished, and did not have to be sent back. It also said that they could have their child work on it during a snow day or one of those long winter break days. The kids were really excited and wanted to do it last night. I told them it was only in case we didn't have school (no weekends). I put a reading log in there (told the kids if they bring it back full they can get a treat from the treat jar). Also some handwriting pages, addition and subtraction pages, and connect the dot coloring pages (have to connect patterns). The kids are very excited. It's all things they love to do.
     
  39. JenPooh

    JenPooh Virtuoso

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    That was my thought. Even though I don't have my own "class". I remember being that age, somewhat:confused: , and dreaded holiday vacation homework. Someone said it makes it more stressfull on the parents, and that's true. The holiday season is so busy as it is and it makes it even busier to assign homework. I'm with the "no homework" group!
     
  40. JaimeMarie

    JaimeMarie Moderator

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    Miss. W,
    I like your idea. It's there if they want to do it but doesn't have to be done if they dont' want to. Perfect for both worlds!
     
  41. Miss W

    Miss W Phenom

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    :eek: It wasn't completly my idea. Someone had posted earlier the idea. I just followed through with it.
     

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