Oakdale Junior School recommended time allocation for homework (including reading to parents/carers):
Years 3 and 4 approximately 1 hour and 40 minutes per week
Years 5 and 6 approximately 2 hours and 30 minutes per week.
Years 3 and 4
- Reading – 10 minutes daily (using reading record)
- Spelling activity– weekly
- Maths Mission – 5 minutes daily
- Maths Homework task – weekly
Year 5 and 6
- Reading – 10 minutes daily (including writing book reviews)
- Spelling activity – weekly
- Maths Mission – 5 minutes daily
- Maths Homework task – weekly
- Additional piece of homework linked to Literacy or Topic work (may be cross curricular)
All children will be encouraged to ‘Extend your learning’ with a task or research area which will be on the weekly Class Update.
From time to time all year groups may be given extra activity sheets to do in order to reinforce or consolidate classwork
All children will have one book in which to complete their homework. The children write or stick in the tasks to be done and then use this to do all of their homework.
Homework will be given out each Thursday
Homework should be handed in every Wednesday
The homework tasks will be explained on the weekly Class Update, handed out each Thursday. These class updates will be emailed to parents using Groupcall.
Due to copyright, it is not possible to publish photocopied homework sheets from published materials.
Children who do not hand in their homework on a Wednesday will be given until Thursday morning to hand it in. If it has not been completed by Thursday morning they will be kept in at lunchtime to complete the tasks. Parents will be contacted if a child is consistently missing the homework deadline.
Children need to read on a daily basis to support the work happening in class. For children in early stages of reading they will need the support of a parent, carer or older sibling. More fluent readers will be able to read independently but it is helpful to talk with your child about their book. Sample questions (Appendix 2) that you can ask your child about their reading book are available to download on the school blog. As well as reading from the chosen reading book it is important to encourage your child to read a wide variety of text such as packaging, signs, newspapers. All reading is valuable! Don’t forget if English is not your home language and your child is able to read in another language then this should be encouraged too.
Year 3 and 4 – Children will need to bring in their reading books and reading records on a daily basis. The year group will let you know which days books are changed. There is guidance on filling in reading records in the Y3 and Y4 books. Children in Years 3 and 4 are also welcome to complete reviews of completed books.
Year 5 and 6 – Children are encouraged to read a range of books of their choice. When they have completed a book they are asked to complete a book review to be shared in the class reading area. A sample Book Review (Appendix 3) is available to download from the school blog.
Children are taught about words that follow a spelling pattern, spelling rule or letter sound each week and the spelling homework will link to this. There are also high frequency words and topic words that children should learn. Spelling homework may include a range of activities that support spelling strategies, not just learning a list of words, and the teacher will then be looking for evidence of correct spelling in the children’s work. If your child is given a list of words to learn, we recommend that you help them to learn the words using the LOOK SAY COVER WRITE CHECK method. So firstly they look at the word and look for any patterns. They then cover the word and try to write it and then check to see if they are right. If they are incorrect they start the process again. The homework book can be used to practise the spellings and spelling patterns.
We are committed to ensuring that every child has the mathematical knowledge and understanding needed to enable them to make excellent progress and leave us with secure mathematical life skills. We focus on known facts within mental maths to ensure that all children have a rapid recall of key facts so that they can then apply them across the maths curriculum.
All children will be working to be awarded Bronze, Silver, Gold, Platinum and Platinum Plus certificates for their ability to know, use and apply known facts. Children should know which steps they have achieved and which they are working towards.
In order to learn known facts, children will need a range of oral and practical experiences. The Maths Mission booklet is available here and is useful for supporting children at home.
‘Extend your Learning’
A task or research area will be on the weekly Class Update which gives children the opportunity to extend their learning, linked to the school curriculum. This work will not be marked but will be discussed during Class Assembly time on a Tuesday morning. This is an opportunity for parents to work with their child to develop independence and a ‘love of learning’ beyond the formal homework.
This is achieved through:
- Task e.g. maths groups
- Outcome – the child’s response to the task
- The level of parental support
Parents/Carers will decide when children will do their homework and how often they do it, within the recommended time levels outlined earlier. For most of the homework tasks however, we recommend that the children do a few minutes each day – ‘little and often’ as this is the best way to ensure that the learning ‘sinks in’.
Marking and Assessing
Year 3 and 4 reading records are a communication tool and need to be brought into school each day to assist the teacher in assessing when a book needs changing or when to move a child on. This is especially important for children who are still on early stage reading. For more fluent readers they provide an opportunity to discuss the book being read. The class teacher will inform the class which day(s) their books will be changed.
Year 5 and 6 book reviews will be added to the class reading area for others to look at.
Homework tasks are usually marked as a class with self or peer marking. The teacher ensures that homework is completed and although will look at homework, they may not formally mark it. Homework will be acknowledged with a tick, a stamper or a short comment. Rewards for excellent homework will be given at the teacher’s discretion.
Maths Mission homework will be assessed through class based activities and the child’s ability to progress to the next step.
Presentation is important and children should be encouraged to present their work legibly and neatly.
If there are difficulties in relation to homework then in the first instance please contact the class teacher. You might also want to contact our parent support advisers who will be able to give you advice on supporting your child, establish routines, understanding what is required or any other query that you have.
There will be a homework club on Monday lunchtime in the ICT suite for children who do not have internet access at home. An adult will oversee this club but will not be available for 1:1 input with children.
If the child is unable to meet the deadline for the task the parent/carer should inform the class teacher. We do however expect all children to complete homework and arrangements will be made during the lunch hour for incomplete work to be finished. We set the homework and ensure that the children have understood the task, it is the parent/carer’s responsibility to ensure that their child has the opportunity to carry it out.
Helping with Homework
- After a short break, but before your child is too tired
- Avoid times that clash with a favourite television programme
- Stick to a regular time if possible
- At a table in the kitchen or dining room is ideal but not always possible
- Aim to give your child peace and quiet whilst they are working. Let younger brothers and sisters see that this is a ‘special’ time for their older sibling so that they will come to expect it too when it is their turn
- If the TV is in the same room then either switch it off or turn the volume down. Remember some children do need some background noise/music to do their best
Do I Help?
- Look through the work and see what equipment might be needed and help your child gather it together
- If your child needs help, be positive, show them where to start and then let them try for themselves
- If you don’t know how to do the work then be truthful. Remember we do many things differently (especially maths) and you might need to refer to your class update sheet for guidance. If in any doubt about methods please contact the school.
- If neither of you can do the work then after a reasonable attempt write a note for the class teacher so that we can help
- Above all be encouraging and interested!