Homework packets

Discussion in 'Elementary Education' started by MsX, May 22, 2008.

  1. MsX

    MsX Companion

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    May 22, 2008

    I'm starting to think about next year and I'm considering sending home a weekly homework packet rather than individual homework assignments each night.

    I teach first grade, and I notice we spend a lot of time as a class writing down homework assigments (school policy) and talking about homework each day. Also, I always have a couple kids each year who DO NOT bring in their homework for one excuse or another. I find it hard to argue too much because they are six. My response is usually "well you need to be responsible about your homework and bring it in tomorrow" If it's a child who repeatedly has done this, I might ask him/her to do it during recess.

    One of my coworkers suggested sending home a packet instead and having it all be due on Friday. I like this idea because it would eliminate the excuse "i wasnt home until late or i didnt have time" because you could do all the work in one day or do it a little each night (as I would assign). I'd like to hear from people who have tried this. Do you find it works better for you than sending home assignments daily? What happens if the child does not bring back the packet?? That would be like missing a week's work of homework - what would you do if this happened?
     
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  3. MissFroggy

    MissFroggy Aficionado

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    May 22, 2008

    For me, the packet is much better. It's one way I can help organize things so I am not shuffling through countless papers and keeping track of so much more. Also, you hand it out and go over it on Monday, and don't think about it again until Monday.

    I do pretty much the same thing each week. Spelling words and math facts. It's good for the parents because they UNDERSTAND those things. If I send home a math sheet and the parents don't get (which happened) I spend a lot of time dealing with the parents over the math curriculum. Also, I have found that there are some parents who will drag things out. They will say HW took an hour. Well, I don't assign it to take that long, but I don't know what they heck they do with their kids at home, or what the kids are doing (throwing fits maybe?)

    Anyway, spelling words and math fact memorization seems to be my most painless method of doing homework. For the parents it's easy, for the kids, it's pretty easy as well.

    Next year I may have 1st or 2nd grade, and I will do the same thing.
     
  4. Darkhorse

    Darkhorse Companion

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    May 22, 2008

    I did packets this year and I am not sure if I want to do them next year.

    There are several cons to doing packets. It takes a big chunk of time to put the packets together. If a student loses the packet or forgets it, they do miss a whole week of homework rather than one day. I was sending them work that we hadn't covered yet, but we would be covering that week and they would get confused. This could be easily avoided by sending homework from the previous week's lessons. You have a big packet to check and grade all at once rather than doing a little each night.

    The pros are good too, though. The students liked it because they got to get all their homework done at the beginning of the week. The parents always knew what to look for when it came to homework, and always knew when it was due. You get the packets together and don't have to worry about it.

    I don't think it is any better or worse than doing it daily. And it doesn't mean that students will complete all the work in the packet, they still forget to do some of it or skip things. I'm just not sure if I like the packets enough for the all the time it takes to do them. I hope this gives you some insight.
     
  5. MsX

    MsX Companion

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    May 23, 2008

    Hmmm - thanks for the input. I guess I have some thinking to do about whether or not I want to try them. I like the idea of thinking about homework only once (even if it is a bit more grading at one time). But it would be more of a hassle getting it all together and as I mentioned in my first post, I'm worried about the kids who misplace or just don't do the packet... since it'd be a week's worth of missed work...
     
  6. lemonhead

    lemonhead Aficionado

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    May 23, 2008

    Hi,

    We are planning on doing this in the fall as well. I'll be teaching first grade. We wanted to do what second grade at our school does but we found out we can only give spelling tests on Friday next year so that sort of ruined the plan. I will tell you what the second grade teachers do at my school. I need to back track first.

    They give spelling tests on Thursday.
    On Friday, they give a spelling pretest for the the next week of words.

    Also on Friday a homework packet goes home. Here is what is in it.

    A cover sheet that says what is due each day and include the spelling words. It also says to practice spelling, math facts and read nightly.

    A spelling assignment which is due Tuesday (this day might be Wed. I don't remember).

    A math worksheet, usually double sided, that is due Thursday.

    A reading log where they write the title of the book they read, the author and one sentence about the book and circle their feeling about the book. This log is due Friday and it must have 4 days of reading on it.

    As teachers, they loved this. Parents, myself included loved it because we new in advance that every Tuesday spelling was due and every Thursday was math. We had the whole weekend to get it out of the way if we needed to for some reason.
     

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