The purpose of our homework strategy is to support students in forming good habits and be able to organise and prioritise their time at home, so they effectively manage their knowledge.
Research has shown that the setting of homework for Secondary School students is a benefit to their learning, with those students who regularly complete homework making 5+ months more progress in Secondary education than students that don’t.
At Campsmount Academy our Teaching and Learning strategies focus on developing secure knowledge that is embedded in our students’ long-term memory. Teachers routinely use retrieval and practice to support this learning, so students develop more complex links in their knowledge base. Campsmount LEARN homework is designed to increase the time students engage with subject knowledge, so lesson time can focus on developing new knowledge and putting what students know into practice.
All LEARN homework tasks will use RETRIEVAL techniques. Retrieval is recalling specific information as and when required. Improved knowledge retention comes from practise. Repeated retrieval of information itself makes this information more retrievable to students. Having the power of knowledge ready when needed gives students the confidence and ability to unlock higher order skills such as analysis, evaluation, synthesis, and problem solving.
Here is a menu of our suggested LEARN homework tasks:
As mentioned in the 'Types of Task' Table above Maths homework is completed online and evidenced in students planners.
All students have a log in for the SPARX website. Students will be set a task in SPARX and as they complete the questions on the online platform they write their responses in their planners. Students can speak to their Maths Teacher if they have any problems logging on.
Here is a video to give parents an overview of SPARX:
A knowledge organiser contains an overview of the topic content in every subject. One will be issued to students each half term. Students will use their knowledge organisers to complete their LEARN homework tasks. Knowledge organisers can be found here.
Students are expected to complete LEARN homework for five subjects each week. It is expected that students spend at least 20 minutes on each subject. Students’ homework will be discussed each morning using the following schedule:
For Open subjects and Humanities subjects students will be able to select one subject and should rotate between the subjects each week. Maths homework will be completed online using Sparx and students will use their planner to record their book checks.
Students will be awarded 2 reward points for each homework check that is successfully completed. These reward points will contribute towards your child’s house competition.
The Academy will facilitate LEARN homework by providing a staffed homework club. The club will be held in the Library and LRC area. This homework club will be available Monday to Thursday each week from 3.00-3.45pm.
It is expected that all students will be able to discuss their completed homework each morning in line with the schedule above.
All students have one missed homework opportunity each half term. Any subsequent missed homework will lead to a 30-minute after-school detention. It is therefore important that students:
Quickly establish good habits and routines.
Ensure they have a school bag with their Planner and Knowledge Organiser in it.
Make use of the afterschool homework club if they struggle with completing homework at home.
Keep a designated LEARN area at home. Somewhere preferably where you have a flat surface, a computer or device for Sparx, and pens readily available. Make sure any distractions are avoided e.g. turn off the television.
Help keep a routine for your child when it comes to LEARN tasks. You might find your child wants to complete their LEARN tasks as soon as they come home from school or they might want to relax and then start working later in the evening. Let your child decide when they want to do their LEARN tasks but try and keep a regular time.
Praise and encourage your child to help boost their confidence. Try to pick up on how they have completed certain tasks for example, "I like the way you worked that out…" as opposed to "Well done".
Ask your child to give you a bit of background on the LEARN tasks and why they have chosen to complete a particular task. This should open up discussion and help their enthusiasm.
However tempting it may be, refrain from completing your child's LEARN tasks for them. LEARN tasks are designed to developed to build your child’s long term memory and solidify their subject knowledge.
Stay calm. It might become frustrating if you are trying to encourage and support your child when they are struggling to remain focused or learn a key fact but remember losing your patience will knock their self-esteem and could also prevent them coming to you for help in the future.
Allow yourself enough time to help your child with their LEARN tasks. Constantly looking at the clock could discourage them and rushing to complete work against the clock will not result in your child’s best piece of work.
Use the library. Staff at your local library will be able to help your child find the info he/she needs and develop their research skills. Many libraries offer free internet access for independent work, and can advise on links to useful websites.
Encourage your child by offering a small reward of their choice if all their set LEARN tasks are complete over a period of time. Aim if possible for them to have at least one LEARN task-free day a week to keep school and social time in balance.
Help your child adapt by supporting them planning their LEARN tasks for the first few weeks using their Campsmount planner.
Don't get stressed out by LEARN tasks - if you are, your child will be too. Remember to contact school if you have any concerns about their Campsmount LEARN curriculum.
As always, we welcome the feedback on our work and enourage parental comments on this initiative. Please contact us at school.