Ask a teacher

18th May 2007 at 01:00
What's the point of homework? Does it exist just so we think from an early age it's fair and right to take work home?

Nisha, Coventry

A Given that teachers take more work home than any other occupation, maybe you have a point. We probably assume that we are failing in our duty to prepare kids for the "real world" if we don't inflict the same misery on them. But generally other people don't, so why should our pupils?

Graham, Crowborough

A I don't think homework teaches children that it's OK to take work home but it does play a vital part in their education, helping them to take responsibility for their own learning, develop their organisational skills and improve time-management.

The most enjoyable and interesting homework is often the project that requires resources from outside the classroom, showing children that work can be even more fun when done at home.

Angie, Guernsey

A Homework should encourage children to think about information presented during the day. Often they grasp the idea of a lesson in school but won't think about it until it's brought up in another lesson.

However, teachers may fall into the trap of setting homework for the sake of it. There should be a clear point to homework. It should enable children first to remember, and then apply, knowledge.

Nick, Rainham

A Homework is simply a pragmatic response to two factors: the impossibility of covering everything within the parameters of the school day, and the acceptance of the fact that learning opportunities - particularly reflective ones - are available beyond the classroom.

Sue, West Sussex

A My MA research showed little evidence to support the value of homework.

The 1998 government guidance established minimum periods for homework and stated that there is evidence "that pupils in the highest achieving schools spend more time on learning activities at home than pupils in other schools". The evidence relates to study for A-level standards. The real value of homework in primaries is to develop an important link between home and school.

Jane, Bedworth

Coming up

Q: Pupils are constantly abusing a teacher because she is overweight. How should she respond to set the pupils thinking and stop them abusing her?

Q: Can pupils who behave inappropriately be banned from school trips? Perhaps it is not very inclusive and wouldn't be allowed as pupils would be missing curriculum entitlement.

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