Homework at The Meads
Many parents have strongly held views about homework and this is often reflected in the feedback we receive from them in our annual parental questionnaire. Research suggests that at primary age, homework has a very limited impact in terms of accelerating children’s progress or consolidating their understanding of specific subjects or concepts. Homework is often seen as a burden and can be the cause of much frustration and even conflict between children and parents at home, potentially leading to the development and establishment of negative attitudes towards work done at home. This is not conducive to children developing the habit of completing study tasks at home – a vital part of the programmes of study for GCSE and A levels, where independence and intrinsic motivation are so important if children are to do well – and yet many parents often expect schools to set homework for their children from an early age.
At The Meads, children are given a homework grid featuring a selection of tasks covering work in English, maths, science, humanities and art, design and technology that all relate to the topic(s) being covered that half term or term and that can be completed across the half term or term. It is recommended that children attempt at least 5 tasks and that they chose at least one from each subject area, but this is not insisted upon. Children can choose to do more than 5, or indeed can chose to do just one, but in much greater depth, which could form an extended topic project and although we would strongly encourage homework to be completed, children can spend as much or as little time on their chosen task(s) as they like – they can even choose not to complete any homework from the grid at all. Hopefully, introducing the element of choice round what task can be completed, to what depth and in what order, as well as the extent to which tasks are engaged with at all, should ensure that homework is a more positive and indeed enjoyable experience for the children, and enhances their learning at school.
In addition to these homework grids, children will be expected to read with or to an adult or independently at least 3 times a week as well as to learn words on weekly spelling lists and to develop and practise their knowledge and understanding of selected times tables.
IMPACT in Learning, which has been a feature of our attempts to engage more parents in their children’s homework and learning in general, will continue at the times and for the year groups indicated on the grid below. At this time, homework grids will be suspended, but the expectation that children continue to read at home, and work on spellings and times tables will continue.
(Children in Year 6 will receive homework focused primarily on revision for their End of Key Stage 2 SATs, usually from the CGP study books that the school purchase on their behalf. Children in Year 2 may also receive homework focused on revision at some point during the year.)