Friday, July 6, 2012

R2L: Perfect Homework Template

I wanted to share a simpler homework template I use with my younger students. The perfect homework template is great for older students. If you teach in 2nd - 4th grade, you might like this template better.  (Similarly, you could use this template for older students who have weaker skills.)

First, lets review the research. (I know, maybe not the most thrilling reading in the world, but I'll make it short and sweet. And . . . while maybe not thrilling, it is so important to make sure that what we are doing with our precious time will bear the fruit of learning!)

The research is actually pretty clear. Students gain very little when they do homework. Actually, according to a meta study by Hattie (1992) that reviewed 110 experiments on homework, it only raised achievement by 1%.  So, there are better ways for you to be spending your time.

How much time do you spend making and grading homework? I suggest that you create a simple template that you can use over and over.

What does raise achievement?

  • Teaching students summarizing strategies and having them write summaries also raises achievement by 35%. 
  • Reinforcing effort raises achievement by 20%. 
  • (All of the statistics were taken from Classroom Instruction that Works.)
You will see that my template uses these results and focuses on what will make the biggest difference. Feel free to save a copy and edit it any way you want. If you use this template for your classroom, please share this website with 3 other teachers. Perfect Homework Template

For my readings, I recommend short non-fiction passages. There are many great books out there. One I really like are the Teacher Created Resources Daily Warm-Ups. Of course, you can use any resource you want. What I like about these books?
  1.  There is one reading for each day of the year.
  2. There is both a non-fiction and mixed non-fiction/fiction book.
  3. They have a reading level index at the back.
  4. The topics are all interesting! (according to me and my students that is)
  5. It is very little prep time for me, but gives high returns for my students.
HOL online classes I offer:

FIRST DAYS OF SCHOOL: From Stress to Success
SAVE TIME: Time Management for Your Teaching & Your Life   

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