Homework

Homework is essential to support the development of learning skills and prepare students for life-long learning.

Homework will usually be given for the following reasons:

  1. to practise what they did in class that day;
  2. to prepare for new material;
  3. to have another go in a different way at something that they struggled with during the lesson; 
  4. to have another try at a skill or concept that they have not yet mastered;
  5. to extend what they have learned by applying the information in new contexts;
  6. to integrate separately learned skills by applying them in projects

All subjects should have a creative and flexible approach to setting homework tasks, which suits their curriculum, makes them varied, challenging and enjoyable, and offers choice where possible for reasons of differentiation and mastery.

Homework offers students a chance to practise what they have learned and to build resilience when they find something difficult; it offers the opportunity to demonstrate on occasions that not succeeding at something is often the first valuable step towards true understanding.

Setting homework offers us the opportunity to check the level of understanding of concepts, competency with skills, or the extent of retained knowledge taught in the classroom.

It is important to offer the students success criteria for any work set.

Teachers should aim to produce homework that allows for a varied approach to assessment: peer assessment; self-assessment, verbal feedback, checking for completion only etc. We should aim to ensure that we only have to mark approximately 20% of all set tasks in the traditional way.

Subjects should consider using their prefects or other students to support other girls after school and at lunchtime in a Homework Club.

It is important to recognize effort rather than success: avoid statements about how clever the child is and focus on how hard they worked. Expectations as to standards of completion will differ with each child but all should be set – and expected to complete – a reasonable amount of homework unless advised otherwise by the SENCO.

All set homework should be communicated to parents/guardians via e-mail and written in the planner by students.  Parents should be given information about the nature of the task, success criteria, a hand-in date and advice as to the type and level of support that they could give their daughter.  It would be advisable to send the task sheet as an attachment when possible.  The e-mail should also go to the Subject Leader and the Line Manager for the subject.

Students who fail to hand in homework should be pushed to do so.  Failure to hand in homework tasks should result in communication with the parents and the setting of a detention.

KS3

Every student should have a homework task to undertake in each curriculum subject once per week for core subjects (Mathematics English and Science) and once per fortnight for all others.  Girls are reminded that on some days there may seem to be a lot of homework and very little on others and are told to organise themselves so that all items of homework are handed in by the set date.

Students are informed that they should expect, on average, the following level of homework per evening:

Year 7 and Year 8          -        approximately 45 minutes of focused effort

Year 9                            -        approximately an hour

KS4

Personal Study Tasks at KS4 are often determined by the demands of assessments, timings of exams and syllabus content.

Time needed for homework will vary but students should expect to do a piece of homework for each subject per fortnight and one a week for Mathematics, English and Science.  Research shows that between one and a half and two and a half hours is the optimum time for 14-16 year old students to spend on homework each day.