Bloody homework!

(105 Posts)
IAmLouisWalsh Sun 24-Mar-13 17:57:49

DS1 is in Y1 and I am fed up with the homework battles. 10 spellings, 2 sheets of sums, a Biff and fucking Chip book to read and a sheet of questions to answer, plus draw a plan of the house. All for tomorrow. Bog off.

Periwinkle007 Sun 24-Mar-13 18:33:31

it will get worse I fear. My daughter is in reception and we have 10 spellings and 32 pages of Biff and co and then come up with something for show and tell and she likes to make or write something. I am cruel though I say she has to have done it all by lunchtime on saturday or she can't go to the park on saturday afternoon.

everlong Sun 24-Mar-13 19:35:56

It can be hard fitting it all in can't it?
Do you spread it out over the weekend?

teacherwith2kids Sun 24-Mar-13 19:38:43

Your school's homework policy should specify amount of homwork expected, and the maximum time it should take each week.

Do that amount, and stop. Write a note on the bottom to say why. Refer up to the hea if there's a problem.

[There is no link between amount of homework and children's progress in primary school, although regular reading - of anything, not necessarily scheme books - does have a positive effect.]

Periwinkle007 Sun 24-Mar-13 20:14:54

yes teacherwith2kids has a good point, if it is taking too long then you need to flag that up.

I think a reading book, spellings and something else is probably pretty standard for year 1 but I am guessing because we aren't there yet.

I think for reception our school says 10-20mins reading at least 3 times a week and then they get either spellings or some sort of phonic work to do at some point between friday and wednesday. The spellings are just the read, cover, say, write ones. as far as I know she isn't actually tested on them it is just to introduce the idea and hopefully she is picking some up, I think they thought there was no point giving the phonic work to her because of her reading ability but it is good they give her something.

do they send it all home on a Friday to be done for Monday? I would probably have a quiet word and ask if perhaps it could be spread out a bit. not meaning it has to be done during the week, give you the option of doing it over the weekend, but stagger which day it is issued/due back so you could do some after school one day if you wanted to.

Coconutty Sun 24-Mar-13 20:18:17

Never,ever,ever do homework on a Sunday. Twill end in tears.

IAmLouisWalsh Sun 24-Mar-13 21:05:02

It is my own fault for leaving it til today, but it is so bloody boring. And utterly pointless. The sums HAD to be done on a number line - so I shouldn't have encouraged him to use logic and say 'if 12+18 is 30, then what is 13+18?'

everlong Sun 24-Mar-13 21:14:43

We do some on Friday night and then the rest Saturday morning and recap his spellings for a test Monday morning.

There used to be a fair bit of dragging of feet but now ( yr2 ) he knows that the sooner it's done his weekend is free.

AryaUnderfoot Sun 24-Mar-13 21:29:56

This half term's homework has been a bit ridiculous.

We have had (yr 1):

Reading books changed every time they're finished (usually 2 a week now that we're on longer books)
A phonics worksheet once per week
Two 'theme learning' activities, chosen from a selection. All involve some degree of 'creativity' - sadly lacking in our household
A (pretty extensive) book review
The bloody class mascot for a weekend - which entails doing something 'interesting' and then writing about it

Interestingly, we never get any spellings.

I think that's more homework than I had in the entire time I was at primary school.

From what I have seen of DS' school, it is the 'uninvolved' parents that don't 'do' the home learning with their children. Thus, the gulf between the 'cares' and 'cares-not' gets bigger and bigger. I'm not sure how this is supposed to help with 'narrowing the gap' IYSWIM.

simpson Sun 24-Mar-13 23:36:00

What I bloody hate is the "show and tell" homework (DD is in reception - last week she had to decorate a hard boiled egg, the week before make a rocket and this week make an Easter bonnet) this is on top of 2 reading books a week, spellings and numeracy homework oh yes and a book report.

80sMum Sun 24-Mar-13 23:42:59

I think homework is a great evil and should be banned! I don't see the point of it for children under about 14. It can ruin a child's weekend and invades into their down time.
Imagine if we all had to take stuff home from the office and get it done in the evening or at the weekend? Ok, sometimes we may choose to do that, but that's a big difference. We do at least have a choice, children don't.

MTSgroupie Sun 24-Mar-13 23:55:32

grin I'm paying good money for the above. You ladies are getting it for free AND you are complaining about it. Proof that if there is a God, He has a cruel sense of humour

steppemum Mon 25-Mar-13 00:26:23

homework does not improve outcomes at primary school level

I find it so annoying that we continue to have so much homework, when this has been clearly shown in research.

The only thing that is worth doing at home is reading (which I would guess includes practising phonics) and times tables.

Learning a list of spellings by look cover write check does not improve spelling either. Taking 5 spellings they got wrong in a piece of writing and spending 5 minutes doing look cover write check, does help as they are based on words they are using.

I truly hate homework (except reading) it has ruined many a weekend, which is precious family time, and a lot more important than writing in a homework book.

MTSgroupie Mon 25-Mar-13 02:10:10

This weekend was fairly typical.

Saturday morning both DCs were at Orchestra. Had lunch at Harvesters. DD went onto her violin lesson while DS went to his piano lesson. We all met up later to go swimming. Afterwards we left the kids at home to watch TV while DP and I did the weekly food shop at Sainsbury. Back home I cooked dinner while DP supervised the music practice. Dinner. 30min free time then 2 hours homework. This was followed by 'chill' time. Tonight it was Mystery Cluedo. Kids read for 15min then bed.

Sunday morning DCs did 30min music practice. We then went to the park to play in the snow. Pub lunch. Afterwards DD popped over to her friend's house while DS hanged out in town with his mates. The evening was very much the same as Saturday.

To summarise, about 4 hours of homework was done plus 2 hours of music practice. DCs had TV and PC time plus hanging out time with friends. And we had family quality time swimming and playing board games.

That was our weekend. If you are saying that a few basic pieces of homework totally messes up your weekend then I would be interested in knowing what you get up to since you obviously lead a much more packed life.

twofalls Mon 25-Mar-13 02:28:28

My school has a "no homework in ks1" policy. They just ask that we do reading as that has the most positive effect and some mental matches stuff round the shop and in the car. The more I read about homework on here the more pleased I am. Utterly pointless at this stage. I would just do the bare minimum and explain to the teacher you are not prepared to do any more than say 15 ir 20 mins. They are 5 and 6 ffs.

MrRected Mon 25-Mar-13 03:49:25

erm MTSgroupie - you sound so smug.

What you haven't factored in is :

Housework (Some of us work in the week and have to do housework on the weekend).
Gardening (as above).
Laundry. Don't get me started on the laundry - at least 10 loads for me this weekend. Washed, hung up, folded by me and then ironed by DH.
Any time whatsoever for the adults to go for a meal/cinema.
Any organised sport (with three kids who do music & organised sport, it's a challenge fitting it all in).

IMO homework on the weekend is just madness.

MTSgroupie Mon 25-Mar-13 07:53:30

Smug? There is that word again.

In a recent thread I mentioned that we don't have problems with toddlers coming to our room in the middle of the night because from the start we would always take them back to their rooms, comfort them and stay wiith pthem until they fell asleep. Once they realize that we don't let them stay, they gave up coming to our room. Problem solved. Apparently, handing out that basic advice made me sound 'smug'. <rolls eyes>

As for me not 'factoring' in stuff, both DP and I also have full time jobs. We start of the washing machine before going to work, hang it up when we get home and we split the ironing which gets done when watching NCIS or some cooking program. We aren't obsessive cleaners so we do the kitchen and bathrooms once a week, usually when the kids are doing their homework. Likewise with the dusting and hoovering. We cut the grass when it gets too long and we water our vegetable patch twice a day, once before work and once when we get home.

As for the weekday taxi service, DCs do three instruments each so that's four after school lessons they need to be taken too. Then there is the athletics club on Wednesday.

I get it that some people can be overwhelmed by work, children and Life but no need to get defensive about it.

everlong Mon 25-Mar-13 07:55:38

4 hours homework? Are these primary school children MT?

Hulababy Mon 25-Mar-13 08:48:57

I work in an infant school. Yr and Y1 have no homework bar reading. Y2 have reading plus one maths and one lit sheet a week but nothing happens if not done. Given to placate parents more than anything I reckon. Scrapped spellings ages ago as they are pointless on the whole.

When dd was in infants at her school there was daily reading, 8 spellings a week in y1/2 then one other piece a week. A pretty academic school but still only about 20 min a week.
She's I'm y6 now and still doesn't get anywhere near as much as some people on here are stating, the children all still achieve very highly, scholarships,to,next schools, etc.

Excess homework, beyond regular reading, for infants is just not necessary.

MTSgroupie Mon 25-Mar-13 09:03:18

They are at secondary school. Yes I know that the OP was talking about primary. Yes I know that primary kids need more homework help than older kids. But I was addressing the general point about how some people's weekends are so busy that an hour or so homework is enough to have parents pulling out their hair in frustration.

But if you want to talk primary school, substitute 'homework' for 11+ tutoring. Add on ballet and football and you have our weekend a few years ago.

rabbitstew Mon 25-Mar-13 09:06:39

Lots of time saved eating out at the weekend, MTS. wink

Does your vegetable patch really need watering twice a day in the snow?

I think your children must be at the older end of primary school if they hang out in town with their mates and do their homework completely independently while you hoover, dust and clean the bathroom. Do they ever help you with the housework?

I wonder whether part of the problem lies with the amount of supervision a parent thinks or knows their child needs in order to ensure the homework or music practice is done with a reasonable degree of effort. Some state primary schools seem to set homework with the primary aim of trying to get parents more involved in their children's learning (ie set tasks which require parents to get involved, rather than get on with the hoovering...). Others set work that could, feasibly, be done by the child with minimal hovering and maximum hoovering.

rabbitstew Mon 25-Mar-13 09:08:03

Ah, sorry, MTS - I see your children are of secondary school age. Did you tutor your children for the 11 plus or use a tutor?

MTSgroupie Mon 25-Mar-13 09:34:02

rabbit - Eating out is no quicker/labour saving than what most mums seem to cook. I mean, bunging in fish fingers and fries into the oven is hardly a time consuming task.

As for watering in the snow, I was merely responding to Mr's post about being busy with gardening.

I see where you are going with this but they don't help with the housework - I'm a bit OCD about how things are done.

I'm not sure why it's relevant to a thread about homework but I tutored them myself.

teacherwith2kids Mon 25-Mar-13 09:47:16

MTS, the OP was talking about homework in Year 1.

At that age, by far the most educationally beneficial activities at the weekend are
a) sleeping
b) reading or being read to from genuinely good books (not scheme)
c) having time to talk to adults
d) playing, whether alone or with an adult or with a group of children - preferably a good variety of games / activities, whether lego / board games / role play / small world play / art & crafts etc
e) physical exercise - whether organised or just playing in the park / taking a dog for a walk

Of course, later in primary, and in secondary, the list of 'most educationally beneficial activities' will change (though the importance of sleep and exercise remains).

teacherwith2kids Mon 25-Mar-13 09:51:54

(And I will say from personal experience as a teacher that the children who arrive in school on Monday morning best equipped to make progress in their work that week are NOT those who have had hectic formal-activity-and-homework-packed weekends, but the ones who have played with their friends, talked to their parents, eaten and slept well and read a good book or two.)

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