This is the 1st time teaching 3rd for me. I want to know how you guys have your kids organize themselves for homework. Do you use a notebook to keep it in? Do the kids write their homework down daily? Do they turn it in or do you go over it together during class? Do you record a grade? Do you have a procedure that you do if students don't complete homework? What subjects do you normally assign homework in?
I know these are a lot of questions. I just want to get this right!
My students have a homework folder. One side is for the assignments that are to be returned to school. The other side is for notes, etc. that are to be kept at home. I personally do not use an assignment sheet because my homework is basically the same all year long. But the other teachers in my section do. My homework consists only of reading for 15 minutes, studying spelling words, studying math facts for twice weekly fact drills, a math worksheet on Monday, and any classwork that didn't get finished in class. I do not grade the Monday math, but we go over it in class the next day. My procedure for classwork that is turned in late (after 8:00 the following morning) is this: The person must stay in at recess and finish the late work. I take 10 points off for the work being late. On the 3rd day of an assignment being late (it does happen occasionally), the highest grade they can make is 70. This policy does not apply to children who have been absent, unless they go past the allotted time they are given for makeups (3 days--school district policy).
MY philosophy on homework is this--I don't give work for the sake of having homework. It should be meaningful and have some educational merit, such as practicing spelling words or math facts. More often than you would like to think, the work is done by someone other than the student, therefore, of what benefit is it?
Last year (2nd grade) I had a homework sheet that the students filled in. Mid year I turned it into a notebook and it was the best thing ever. The students and parents loved it. It taught the students resposibility. After the first nine weeks most parents were amazed at how the students would come home get the work done without complaint and know what they were doing.
I will continue it in 3rd grade, at the request of the students that will be coming with me again. In 4th and 5th grade in our school and then on through high school the students get a commercially made "planner" .
I feel that I am teaching them the beginning of a lifelong skill.
The homework I assign is rather consistent, so that eases them into being able to fill in the planner, they are also taught abbreviations and a shorthand, if you will, in writing the assignments.
Spelling, I have set assignments for the week practicing their words, Math is a worsheet that directly connects to the concept taught that day, and a reading assignment of some sort whether it is reading from the reading book, or reading in a content area plus any unfinished work.
Moving to 3rd gr. I will have to make some adjustments since in math I no longer have consumable books to send home and we are getting a new reading/spelling/grammer series.
1. I give my students a homework sheet every week - it's on the back of their weekly newsletter. I write the homework on the board and they write it on their homework sheet. Before I stamp their behavior log (at the bottom of their homework sheet) I check to make sure they've written down the homework.
2. We go over the homework together in class. It's the quickest way to find out if I need to review a concept or go into more detail. It takes just a few minutes when we're starting that subject. What I do is ask who doesn't have their homework - then I write their name in a binder. Then we go over it together (I don't worry about them lying about it - they know I'll walk around and see who has it). When I do graded paper folders (every Fri.) I can glance in the binder to see who didn't do homework that week. I also give out homework passes if they do their homework all month.
3. The ones who didn't do homework miss recess. They do the homework in a recess room (we take turns with that duty).
4. No, I don't normally record a grade for homework. I consider it practice, and I just want them to try. I've had problems in the past with parents doing it for them, so that really wasn't THEIR grade anyway!
5. I don't give a lot of homework - we work really hard throughout the day. I usually give a math sheet and occasionally some spelling (we don't do spelling every week). They also are required to do a reading log every month - but I count that as a project grade since it lasts the whole month.
I don't blame you for asking a lot of questions - I did the same thing!
Do you use a notebook to keep it in? My kids use a daily folder. I check it every morning, pulling out HW as necessary.
Do the kids write their homework down daily? We use school-provided planners to teach the kids how to write down homework. It's done during a specific time of the day, and I MUST look at it before they can put it away.
Do they turn it in or do you go over it together during class? Both. I take it out of folders in the morning and we go over it as a class during the day. Sometimes I grade it myself and they correct it later, sometimes volunteers correct it and go over it with the child.
Do you record a grade? No % grade for HW, just a completed/not competed grade (part of reading/math/spelling report card grade.)
Do you have a procedure that you do if students don't complete homework? No homework= no recess (you do the work you chose not to do at home during recess.) Also goes home on weekly progress report so parents know when kids aren't doing work.
What subjects do you normally assign homework in? Reading (20+ min. a night), math (sheet to review day's lesson AND flashcard practice as needed), spelling (3 assignments a week.)
I am excited to see that someone has come up with a system that both parents and students (and the teacher) love! I am new to 3rd grade (only a 2nd year teacher) so I would love to use your system in my own classroom. I am having a hard time picturing this notebook though. Do you mind explaining it a little more or attaching the form that you have your students fill in?
Glad to help. This is the 1st time I've attempted an attachment so here goes. The Spelling in () is what I do in class. I try to do the fun messy stuff in class and leave the predictable spelling page for homework. Parents like the predictability of HW with their busy schedules.
I did nine weeks worth at a time, dated and put them in a 3 pronged notebook. In the back of the notebook was a list of all vocabulary words and spelling words needed for the year. Another parent favorite.
I started out sending 1 sheet a week and that would get lost, but once I put the notebook together, no lost books and homework improved dramatically. Was well worth the effort.
Our copy machine is able to put in 3 hole punches (found that out end of the year after I was done!)
Not much, but it works for me.
One year when I had a particularly challenging class so I had a behavior chart on the reverse side.
Notebook?---we had homework folders. One side was labeled TO DO and the other was labeled KEEP AT HOME I collected them everyday and took out any papers that needed to be corrected.
Planners--This has been done two ways. 1. The school purchased planners for us and we filled them out together everyday. I had the kids write something in each subject (to show parents what we had done that day) and highlight their homework. I had to initial all planners before they were packed. 2. The last school I was in made their own planners and put them in a folder. Used them the same way. I send them home Monday - Thursday and sent their Friday folder home on Friday.
Turn it in--Most days they just turned them in and I corrected it. I had assigned them numbers so it made it easy to see who had theirs turned in and who didn't at a glance.
Grade--I would correct it and give it a grade which I put in my book. Then I would use that to boost a grade if they were border line between two grades. I also used it to keep track of late work.
Not completed--They missed recess until the work was done.
Subjects--I assigned math (Investigations has pre-made homework) they had to read for 20 minutes per night, sometimes Social Studies and sometimes spelling.
Do you use a notebook to keep it in? All my students have their own homework folder. They also have a homework composition book for their spelling homework and book summaries. They put the composition book right in their folder and turn it all in at once.
Do the kids write their homework down daily? Last year in second grade, I provided my students with a homework sheet with their homework already written on it. I had some very slow writers and didn't want to waste classroom time having them copy it down. This year since I'll be in 3rd grade, I'm going to have them write it down daily, since I know that write faster now.
Do they turn it in or do you go over it together during class? They turn their homework in on Friday. Usually during DEAR time on Friday, I'll look through the folders and glance over it. If a student has made a lot of mistakes on their math homework, I call him up right then and there and quickly discuss it with him.
Do you record a grade? No. I just quickly glance over it for completeness and if there are any glaring errors. For students who don't turn their homework in regularly, there is a space on our report cards where we can place a check mark that states this.
Do you have a procedure that you do if students don't complete homework? I also do no homework=no recess. If they don't turn in homework that Friday, they have to spend their recess and specials time to complete it.
What subjects do you normally assign homework in? This was my second grade homework. Read for at least 20 minutes. Complete a math worksheet. Spelling activities varied throughout the week (ABC order, sentences, 3 times each, finding and cutting the words out of the dictionary, write a story with the words, find the definition of the words.) Third grade homework will be similar, only they'll also have a social studies, health, or science activity along with it.
We get planners from our PTO for the children to use to write down their assignments. They also get a "Take Home" folder from the PTO. One side is for worksheets/ etc that needs to be returned to school. The other side is for notes and completed papers to stay at home.
Do the kids write their homework down daily?
The kids write down their homework from what I have listed on the board daily. Assignments are usually the same for spelling each week. (Mon. ABC order, Tues. and Wed. Choice , and Thurs. 3 times each) Math is usually a workbook page that covers concepts learned that day. Reading workbook is given a few nights a week. Reading / Spelling test are always on Friday so they have to study for that. In addition, I have them read for 15 min. Monday through Thursday and turn in a Reading Log on Friday. Health, Science, and Social studies are given occassionally and I try to plan it so there isn't too much work in one night.
In addition to having the children write down their assignments, I have a "Homework Hotline". I put the assignments and any up coming tests or projects on my school answering machine. The parents and the kids are expected to call if they forget somethng or need clarification of an assignment. It also works well for those children who are absent. Each student is issued an E Book for math that has all the workbook pages and since spelling is the same each week, there is no reason not to have homework done in those subjects. Parents LOVE the homework hotline, in the beginning of the year there are lots of calls so parents can double check the assignments written down in the planner. It only takes a few seconds to do at the end of each day. No one can ever say " I didn't know about it"
Do they turn it in or do you go over it together during class?
Spelling is turned into me. We have individualized spelling lists so their ABC order is handed back out on Friday for their partner to give them their test. Math and reading are corrected whole group and I can see who is having trouble with a concept right away before we start the next lesson. It usually only takes a few minutes and I can keep an eye on kids who are having trouble that day.
Do you record a grade?
I always take Health workbook pages for a grade, otherwise the homework is checked as done/ not done. Once a week I will take a grade on a random assignment so the kids don't get lazy on me
Do you have a procedure that you do if students don't complete homework?
If they don't complete their homework, they don't get recess. They also have to take a "homework" sheet listing missing or incomplete assignments home to be signed by the parents and returned the next day with the completed assignment. If the problem is cronic, I will call the parents.