This is my second year teaching fourth grade at a private school. Last year my policy was that if a student did not turn in homework, the student had to miss recess to complete the homework. This is the policy that is also used by the third grade teacher. I only had one parent complain -- the parent of a student who never turned in homework. I don't grade homework, it is for independent practice only. I also told parents at the beginning of the year that if a student struggled with an assignment, just write a note on the unfinished homework so that I knew to review the skill with the student. This would not be counted against the student. My question is this - what should the consequence be for not turning in homework? Should I continue to take away recess time to complete assignments? Thanks for any suggestions
My question is, if you don't grade the homework then what is the incentive for doing it? Do you go over the homework in class? As a student I wouldn't be very motivated to do homework if I knew that it didn't "count".
My homework counts as a grade. Now homework only counts as 10% of their overall grade so that students are not overly penalyzed because parents don't enforce homework at home.
My students have to do their homework during our morning recess if they didn't do it the night before. It is counted as late which automatically deducts one letter grade from their assignment. If this happens two times in one week then they lose "Fun Friday" - an extra recess/game time we have for the last 20 minutes on Friday.
I took away recess this year. I also give a citizenship mark for not completing assignments. It seems though that the same students continue to not complete homework assignments. I don't know how to "fix" that.
I also do not grade homework, but we review it in class because it covers standard based math skills.
I choose not to punish them for not turning in their homework, instead I choose to reward them as a bit of an incentive. Do a search for Homeworkopoly through google or yahoo and you will come up with a link to check it out on.
I always feel that I have to in some way grade homework or else it leaves the student wondering how they did. Last year I put check minus, check, and check plus at times and the students came and asked me what the meant.
I too take a homework grade. Hopefully you follow my chaotic plan! ;-)
Each child starts off with a 100 homework grade in the subjects homework is given.
I check for completeness, not correctness. ALTHOUGH, if they miss a significant amount, they are required to correct it.
IF homework is NOT turned in, 4 points is deducted from the 100 and a note is sent home. If it is partial or a day late, 2 points are deducted.
At the end of the 6 weeks grading period, the homework grade is added in as a quiz grade in that subject.
EXAMPLE: If 3 assignments are missed in Math, that would give them an 88 homework grade, which would then be added in as a quiz grade.
HOpe that made sense! I promise, it is not as hard as it sounds!! :-)
I agree with other posts, if there is no grade, why do it? You might try what I call a participation grade. For every assignment they turn in, they get 5 points and this grade is added in at the end. This works with most students but some students will never do homework and there is nothing you can do. I give tickets for each assignment. I also take a grade on a good many of them. The tickets go in a jar and at the end of the week I have a drawing for two coupons. One is a homework pass, the other is a "You choose from the menu." The menu has things like extra recess, computer time, sit with a friend at lunch. First in line for lunch. It can be anything that doesn't cost anything. Messenger, paper passer, etc. My students like to write on the overhead. When we do the daily grammar review (DLR, analogies, editing, etc.)
I do a similar thing--take recess away if students don't complete their assignments. I also check for completeness. For rewards, I give homework passes and monthly reward parties.
The problem I have with taking away from their recess is that it takes away from my time to prepare. I have to spend all of my time in class to watch the students instead of making photocopies, etc. Any suggestions??
I like the idea of making it a grade that gets calculated in at the end of the quarter.
I used two things that worked really well last year. The most effective was using the "clickers" to check homework. If a student did not have their homework finished BEFORE coming to class they didn't get to use them. The second was a Homework Picnic. My partner and I made a chart together and everyday they got a mark for turning in their homework. After two weeks we would invite those students who completed all homework for BOTH classes got to eat their lunch with us and we would add like a cookie or little debbie.
Because of our duty schedules, it's really hard to keep kids in to do missing h.w.
I use the check mark system , not a letter grade for h.w. and so if there are holes in the grade book, the consequence is a lower grade (after making students and families aware...) I do accept late work.
Another natural consequence is that if they're not getting the practice it provides, chances are quiz and test scores are effected if the assignments have been purposeful .
I just finished up a year with the laziest batch of students imaginable. I had many students who never turned in homework on a regular basis. Nothing was getting through to them! Not missing Fun Friday, recess, sending them to another room to finish it. Incentives only had limited impact as well. I finally asked in exasperation if they had homework in 3rd grade and most told me they did not. I came to realize I did not properly and slowly teach them and their parents proper habits at the beginning of the year.
I plan on starting off the year slow and make the punishment for no homework very painful (like recess with their head down on their desk and a phone call home, no computer lab, laps for PE instead of a game, no end of the day free-play, etc...) My goal is to get it to a point where I don't have to check the the homework every night (except math -- we grade it daily) The other homework is Reading. All their reading homework is turned in with a packet when the story is finished.
My district has a no grading homework policy. i don't like it, because I used to grade my homework like some of you - checkmarks and 10% of grade - kind of an effort grade. However, this year I had to adjust my policy. I used both positive and negative consequences. I use a point system for groups with the reward for overall behavior, etc. being lunch in the classroom with me. I make it fun, so it really is a motivator. The negative consequence has been no recess. Next year, however, we are having a weird duty system, so I will not be outside with my class. Effectively this will take away the no-recess consequence. So, I've got to experiment to find what will work with my next group.
I have to say to TeacherDave, you sound like you need an enjoyable vacation! Good luck next year.
I like the idea of giving points for participation in homework. It seems easy for parents and kids to understand. I think I might like to give this a try. As for missing recess, we have no time for extra recess or fun-days. Our recess break now is structured and mandatory. Students will not be allowed to miss a recess. Is the 30 minute PE daily required in all states?
Our 4th grade policy was that homework counts if completed. It is a homework grade, and you do not have it, you get a zero and you must do it during recess time. This has always worked until this year because parents complained to the central office. Now, students will get 50% of homework grade if they don't have it, but must complete during recess. Now that parents have told students this, they have slacked off on homeowork.
I too am in a district that does not allow us to grade homework. I'm self-contained and my daily homework is very consistent--reading log, mulitplication facts, and a LA assignment (usually spelling until I can build in more variety). Parents have to sign off on the reading log each week, and I pick up the homework each morning checking it off in their assignment notebooks (daily calendar). Their consequence is silent lunch and usually a call home if it happens recurrently. For the most part, my students always have their homework done because they always know what it is and have no excuse even if they are absent. I liked checking their homework each morning as they did their morning assignment because it gave me a chance to talk to each student one on one first thing in the morning.
We are not allowed to give a grade on homework. Homework should merely be practice for what we have taught during the week/day. When I check homework and a student has not completed it then they automatically know they have to pull a card ( I use the card system for behavior). This is only so the parents see it at the end of the week. I send home a Homework Notice that the students fills out as to why they did not complete, and it has to be signed by the student, me, and the parent. The consequence for not completing the homework is walking the track. Last year we were told that recess was not to be taken away because of the physical activity law. I have them walk the track, so they are still getting their physical activity, but not doing exactly what they want during recess. If the form AND the homework that was not completed is not turned in the next day, then they walk the track again. I have only done this for one year, but it worked out really well.
I liked the fact that it kept the communication lines open with the parents. They could never say, in a conference, that they did not know their child was not completing homework. All I had to do was pull the SIGNED form out of the folder.
punishment vs consequences for not turning in homework?
i really think things like making kids walk a track or putting heads down at recess doesn't exactly fit the "crime". Don't we want kids to value homework as a method of learning/understanding/practicing class material?
So how is punishing them going to help that??
I know the argument is probably to make them uncomfortable for not doing the work ... but when I keep kids in I want them to be productive and understand that they're not going to get out of work just because they didn't do it at home, so the logical consequence is actually doing the work!!!
i know this is going to be a push the buttons kind of post, but what do others think?
I'd like to clarify for Linda and others what "no recess" means to me. I'm sure that there are many others posting here that will agree with this. When I say "no recess" the alternative is study hall in one of the grade level teacher's rooms. There were three of us who participated on a week by week rotating schedule. Students were only sent to study hall if they were missing homework or did not complete an assignment in class. This was used as a consequence for not meeting expectations - not as a punishment. During this time, students definitely did not sit with their heads down. If they completed their work early, they were allowed to read independently.
On the other hand, we also used a "walk the track" system for misbehavior. Our students walked loops around the outside of the basketball court so that they didn't miss out on their mandatory minutes of PE.
the students are being asked to complete the work they missed, but not at school. We were not allowed to keep students in, or even sit at recess to complete the work. They HAD to do physcial activity during that time.
Yes, the benefit of homework is to actually give students practice/guided practice, but I do feel that those who choose not to do it (which I had several who CHOSE not to do it in the beginning) need a punishment/consequence. Students who are doing what you ask them to do need to see that some type of action is being taken. If we couldn't have them do it during recess the only type of consequence/punishment they could have would be to walk.
On our progress reports, homework has its own section. The grade is based on completion only. If the kids turn in their homework, I give them 2 points, if its incomplete 1 point, and if its missing 0. Any students who still have 100% by the end of the trimester get to be part of the Homework Club Party. We usually do pizza or ice cream. The kids love it and they encourage each other to do their homework so they can have their friends at the party. If they miss their homework, they stay inside for recess also. We go over homework in class as part of our review for the week. I have a small bulletin board on a cabinet with each kids name on it. This year we had tropical fish cutouts so if they missed an assignment their fish got "flushed". It works great! This year I only had 3 make it first trimester, but third trimester over half the class made it!
What I have done the past few years is have the child sign the Homework Book if the assignment is not turned in. If they bring it in the next day or two, they leave it alongside, and I check their name off. It serves only as a very good, easy record for me as to who is not doing homework and how often. We do not grade homework. I also give very little homework: a math page, reading log, occasionally a third item. Most kids do their homework most of the time. If someone is not completing it, I call home or send a note. On the report cards there is a place where homework completion is checked if it needs improvement. I do not stress over homework. There is a natural consequence if kids are not doing it; it usually affects their grade in the short run. I would rather spend my time teaching them. I have to retract about the grading for the reading log. I give one reading quiz grade averaged in to their quarter grade based on how many logs were completed. For the child weak in reading, this could be a 100 if he/she completes all or misses only one. For the mat homework we correct it together or I randomly collect it and correct it myself. This has worked out very well for me
I took away recess. They also got a homework demerit which was recorded on their conduct sheet that their parents would sign each week. I usually don't take homework for a grade either but occasionally, I would take it as a homework/participation grade. This would count for a total of 10% of their grade. If they didn't turn it in, they got a zero. I put all of my policies into a homework letter that parents and students had to sign at the beginning of the year. I had the two or three who usually wouldn't turn in their work but I only had one parent complain. After I sent them a copy of the letter they signed at the beginning of the year, I didn't have another complaint.