Homework Policy

1. Rationale:

Homework is important at all stages in a child’s education and when used properly, it extends the challenge open to the pupil and ensures that teaching time is used to maximise effect. Homework makes a significant contribution to the development of independent learning.

2. Aims:

Through this policy we aim to:

• ensure that parents are clear about what their child is expected to do
• ensure consistency of approach throughout the school
• use homework as a tool to help continue to raise standards of attainment
• improve the quality of the learning experience offered to pupils and to extend it beyond the classroom environment
• provide opportunities for parents, children and the school to work together in partnership in relation to our pupil’s learning
• reinforce work covered in class by providing further opportunities for individual learning
• practise and consolidate basic skills and knowledge, especially in Numeracy and Literacy
• encourage children to develop the responsibility, confidence and self-discipline needed to study independently
• enable children to transfer skills cross-curricular

3. The Nature of Homework

Homework can be set in different ways, and with different expectations and outcomes:

• The nature and type of homework should change throughout a pupil’s school career
• The nature and type of homework should consolidate classroom learning
• The amount and frequency of homework should increase as a pupil gets older, but should always be appropriate to the ability of the individual child
• Homework should not cause undue stress on the pupil, the parents or the teacher
• Homework must be set regularly from Year 1 to Year 6

4. Recommended Time Allocation

Homework should never be too time consuming, nor should it create stress for pupils and their families. If parents have any concerns, they should not hesitate to contact the school. Normally, more than one day will be allowed for the completion of a homework task, except where daily practice is to be required and needs to be encouraged, i.e. reading, spelling and times tables.

In line with the National Curriculum of England objectives, the following time allocations are recommended for homework activities
• Years 1 and 2: 1 – 1.5 hours per week
• Years 3 and 4: 1.5 – 2.5 hours per week
• Years 5 and 6: 30 – 60 minutes per day

5. Homework Tasks

Listed below, for each Phase of Green Park School, are examples of tasks and activities that might be given as homework. Please note that this list is by no means exhaustive and open to constant change. Homework activities may change to meet the needs of the pupils
involved and activities that might be occurring in class. All homework tasks and activities will have a clear purpose and assist pupils in the process of their academic development. The list below is therefore not exhaustive:
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Phase 1 – Year 1 and Year 2
• Reading books and key words
• Learning spellings
• Learning number facts
• Literacy activities and small, age-adequate and curriculum-relevant research projects are encouraged
• Numeracy activities
• Working out real life problems (i.e. house numbers, shapes in the house, etc.)

Phase 2 – Year 3 and Year 4
• Reading
• Spellings
• Literacy activities, including independent writing activities
• Numeracy activities, including times tables
• Handwriting practise
• Small, age-adequate and curriculum-relevant independent research projects and presentations
• Self-assessment of own learning

Phase 2 – Year 5 and Year 6
• Reading
• Spellings
• Handwriting practise
• Reading comprehension activities
• Planning pieces of writing
• Research projects and planning presentations
• Researching topics
• Times Tables
• Number facts and number bonds
• Self-assessment of own learning

How can parents help?
Showing that you care and taking interest is perhaps the greatest help you can give. Please can you check your child’s diary daily and sign it each week. The homework diary is an important means of communication between the school and parents. Teachers and the Academic Manager check your sons/daughter’s diary at least once a week. The diary should be kept tidy and free from graffiti. You can also broaden your child’s education through planned visits to places of geographical, historical, scientific or cultural significance and interest, or by looking out for useful television programmes, newspaper articles or websites such as Al Jazeera, in both English and Arabic.
What happens if homework is not completed on time?
We expect homework to be completed and to be handed in on time. This gives pupils valuable experience of working to deadlines and helps staff with their marking schedules. However, sometimes it is not possible to complete homework for a variety of legitimate reasons and we would ask that you write a note in your son or daughter’s diary to explain why a time extension is necessary for the work to be completed. If homework is not completed, then the following action will be taken:
• First homework missed – Message in diary to inform parent. The student is given a short period of additional time to complete the task.
• Second homework missed – Message in diary and a school detention.
• Third homework missed – Message in diary and involvement of the Academic Manager. Parents may be asked to meet with School staff to discuss strategies to ensure homework is completed.

6. Role of the Class Teacher
• to inform parents in writing at the beginning of each term, outlining the homework tasks and learning targets set for children, and if necessary give guidance of how they might assist their child.
• to set up regular homework in an easily followed routine
• to ensure homework is set consistently
• to ensure homework is purposeful and links directly to the curriculum being taught
• to mark homework appropriately, when necessary and give individual feedback to pupils
• to reward and praise children who regularly and satisfactorily complete set homework tasks
Note: Whilst Green Park School is legally responsible to set homework on a regular basis, the school cannot enforce the completion of homework. However, pupils who do not complete their homework or who have not spent the recommended time attempting to complete their homework, will be provided time in school, after regular hours, to finish it with the help of staff, so that it can be ensured that the pupil understands and is confident regarding the homework content.
Parents will be notified by letter if their child regularly fails to submit homework or does not spend the recommended time trying to complete their homework.

7. Role of the School Principal:
• to check compliance of the Homework Policy
• to meet and discuss with staff how far the policy is being successfully implemented
• to meet and talk with parents when appropriate
• to report to the Stakeholders on the success of the Homework Policy and suggest changes if necessary

8. Role of Parents/Caregivers:
• to support the school by ensuring that their child completes or at least attempts the homework independently
• to provide a suitable, quiet place for their child to carry out their homework
• to become actively involved and support their child with homework activities

At Green Park School, we are very keen for parents to support their children with set homework tasks. We believe that children are likely to get more out of an activity if parents get involved and assist, as long as it is apparent to the teacher that the homework is the child’s own work, as we need to see what children can do on their own. It is particularly important for children to become independent in and responsible for their learning. If a parent is unsure what their role should be, they are encouraged to seek advice from their child’s teacher.

9. General:
Marking of homework: staff should mark homework that is returned by pupils. This will give the process of setting and completing homework a higher profile and status, and underpin the message that homework is an important and valued aspect of school life. Marking of homework is a way of keeping track of who has completed their homework, and a way of giving feedback and setting targets.
• Illness: if children are absent due to illness, we will assume that the child was unable to complete any homework tasks set
• Long term absence: if a child is absent for a length of time (i.e. hospitalisation), the teacher will contact the parent to determine what should be done. In such circumstances, the Academic Manager needs to be consulted. The school should resume the responsibility of ensuring that the parents/child are given daily work and any homework that is covered during the time of absence.
• Holidays during term time: it is not possible to give homework in such cases. It is the responsibility of Green Park School and the Class Teacher to inform parents that the school is in no way responsible for ensuring the child has adequate time and opportunity to catch up. This is solely the responsibility of the parents.

10. Policy Review:
This policy is subject to an annual review