Sending home homework...

Discussion in 'Elementary Education' started by Backroads, Nov 13, 2016.

  1. Backroads

    Backroads Aficionado

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    Nov 13, 2016

    About weekly, I get an email or Bloomz text from a set of parents concerning the missing homework their daughter never brought home. I keep my homework very simple: it's simply reading minutes. They're very nice about it, so parent problems isn't the issue.

    My question is how much of it is my responsibility to make sure the girl gets the reading minute page home. This girl is almost 9, but was kept back a year to repeat kindergarten, and is one I'm collecting data for our child assessment team. Even so, I hate to physically put the homework in her backpack for her, which Mom is offering as a suggestion.

    My homework passing-out procedure: I have a big pocket chart on the wall with a pouch for each student. This is where all the "home" stuff goes. I put the homework pages in there, and at the end of the day the kids pull from their pouch and put it in their backpacks. It's a good system for most kids most of the time except apparently this one girl. (I also have a nother pouch with extras plus a downloadable copy on my blog. THe parents prefer not to download as they want to teach her responsibility. I get it.) The girl empties her pouch, but I don't know where this homework goes.

    Should I make an exception and just stick the homework in her bag for her? SHould I give it to her directly?
     
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  3. otterpop

    otterpop Phenom

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    Nov 13, 2016

    I think that it's unreasonable to ask/expect you to put it in her backpack. It seems much more reasonable to expect the parents to print it at home.

    I also have some parents who ask their child when they pick them up whether they have their homework, and if the student does not, they'll run back into the classroom to get it. It doesn't happen often but it is another option.

    If a child is forgetting their homework, it might help for the parents to set up some kind of reward or consequence system. A sticker chart, perhaps? Or, if she remembers it each day that week, she's able to watch tv or go out for icecream that weekend?
     
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  4. mathmagic

    mathmagic Enthusiast

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    Nov 13, 2016

    Can this be slowly scaffolded for the student? That is, you set a specific number of days that you plan on modeling how to make sure it's put in her backpack, then a specific number of days given just a reminder, and then eventually expected to do it independently, or that the student must tell the parents to print it out as a natural consequence? I have many kids who struggle/struggled with organization...and I try to do a ton of initial help and model what it would look like, then I remind them from time to time, and then eventually they have to keep it clean, otherwise they need to organize it on their time (unless more reteaching is needed, which it is for some students, as they're still learning how to organize).

    (In a sense, it's the "I do, we do, you do" that we always do for all the rest of the taching)
     
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  5. a2z

    a2z Virtuoso

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    Nov 14, 2016

    I agree with magicmike except for a bit of a difference. Some kids just need the help and some need it for longer. When you start fading the help depends on what you are seeing with the student. The student might need a change in method until it starts sticking. A predetermined timetable doesn't always work. (I think that is what you meant magicmike.)

    I think having work on-line is fantastic for those times where a random mistake happens or if it is an expectation that all students are printing it instead of taking it home. Having the parent print it all the time and ignoring the organizational problem is just kicking the can down the road. It ignores the real issue because the solution is easier for you.

    It is absolutely harder for at teacher with 25 kids to ensure that they all have their work packed up when you have a few you have to help, but how else are they going to learn with out intervention?
     
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  6. Backroads

    Backroads Aficionado

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    Nov 14, 2016

    This is very true. I put the reading page up online just for those "oops" moments do families and I think it's only been used a handful of times.

    Ultimately I don't mind helping her put it in her backpack, but I do wonder if that takes away the responsibility from Kiddo. I do like seeing it as scaffolding, and the process might help me see where the page is going.
     
  7. a2z

    a2z Virtuoso

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    Nov 14, 2016

    When you say that you wonder if it takes away the responsibility from the kiddo, you are saying that all kids develop at the same rate and any failure to produce expected results are choices the student makes rather than a lag in skills.

    Would you say that by 3rd grades kids should be able to read, so, after that, any help would be taking away the student's responsibility? No. You would say they are still lacking skills and need instruction and guidance. Why are organizational skills any different?

    My opinion is we back off of modeling organizational skills and direct help for organizational skills too early and we often turn over too much responsibility too early. My personal experience is that those students who were expected to be responsible for tremendous amount of things early on tended to struggle with organization later.
     
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  8. Backroads

    Backroads Aficionado

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    Well, I sent a proposal to her parents saying I'd help her get the homework into her backpack and asking them to let me know each Monday evening if the homework doesn't make it home.
     
  9. a2z

    a2z Virtuoso

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    That is fair. It also ensures that if the child is doing something between classroom and home and it is not a deficit in organizational skills, it is uncovered.
     
  10. Sharon J.

    Sharon J. Rookie

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    Nov 14, 2016

    I don't think you should be putting it in her backpack daily as she won't ever learn how to take responsibility. I like your pocket chart system! Maybe her pocket chart neighbors (on a rotational basis), can help her make sure that she brings it home since when they pick up their HW, then they can quickly visually see if she's packed hers up or not! Yes, I agree that there should a slow release so that she can feel successful and eventually be able to do it on her own. She does need some time of incentive in the beginning (maybe a check system for each day of the week and if she gets x number of checks, then she can help you with something she loves or choose the book for read aloud, etc.). Good luck! Please keep us posted!
     
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  11. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

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    Nov 14, 2016

    So the parents won't download so that she will take responsibility and then put the onus on you?
     
    Last edited: Nov 14, 2016
  12. DizneeTeachR

    DizneeTeachR Virtuoso

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    Nov 14, 2016

    We had a homework folder. It was like a plastic folder the schools color.. it had a plastic cover in front that the parents had to sign & date that they received it. It worked really well...maybe something like this would help all of you.
     

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