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Does anyone have any good ideas on how you get kids to actually do it? Thanks!

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I don't assign much homework because I know they don't do it. High school students have so many things going on, ie. Sports, cheer, student council, drama, jobs, etc. If I assigned it and gave them zeros for not completing it, most would be failing by the end of the first quarter. Some things I have done are give points to kids who complete it and no points if they don't, give a very low grade for HW, so that it doesn't count for much, allow students with an A or B to opt out of HW, or maybe try getting some ideas from the students themselves. I teach English and I do assign vocabulary HW and reading (AR). They have a week for the vocabulary and sometimes I'll allow them class time to finish and study.
Thanks, Dani. I'm starting at a new school this August and wanted to try homework again and see if I can get some better results. Your experience sounds similar to mine in the past. I am starting at a very small school, and I'm hoping to see if I can maintain some positive parental contacts when I need help getting kids to do homework. I do value homework, in that, students do get used to doing something academic on their own, which is important, but I also know that I will need to work really hard to make sure most of the students will actually do it.
My experience has been that if you assign HW just for HW's sake then the kids won't do it and parents won't be supportive. However, if you assign HW that is meaningful (like math HW should be) then parents will have to get behind you on it since they can see the value of it. That being said, how much HW is enough HW? Do students really need to complete 20 math problems when 10 would do, or complete a worksheet on comma practice if only 10 students are struggling with commas? What kinds of HW are you thinking of assigning?
Sure, homework must be meaningful--why else do it? I want to assign homework that is an extension of what we are doing in class, such as if we have a discussion, then I'd like students to go home and write something based on it. Reading and studying for tests will also be homework. I'd also like to have creative writing assignments as homework sometimes. Speech and storytelling are a big part of how I teach English, so I'd also like to assign students to do interviews, oral practice, story gathering among relatives, etc. We'll see! Thanks for your input.
I usually have a writing assignment scheduled for Friday and one year I assigned a rough draft of the prompt for HW on Thursday nights. It was optional but I gave them 10 points towards the final if they completed it. It helped my struggling writers have extra time to work on it and served as motivation for those kids who needed the extra points. Some HW is necessary and I guess you have to decide whether to be firm and give zeros for non- participation, or assign it just for practce. Good Luck!

We have had the same kind of struggles getting homework out of students. In some cases, though I know we are different since we have special needs, they do their work on the computer while in class and submit to the teacher via email. They have the same requirements as the rest of the students and must turn off any grammar or spell check programs that are available on their wordprocessing program. This has helped tremendously in getting homework or classroom writing assignments out of many of the students that during first semester were not turning in anything. They bring in their own laptops and know if caught doing anything other than what they are to be doing in class they will have detention, no warnings given. It is already written in the handbook due to their technology class on campus. Just a suggestion especially in this day and age of technology and so many of the students being bored sitting there and will not pick up a pencil or pen to write anything down.

Mrs. Cross


Have you ever considered doing what you are talking about as a blog? I give my students (special education in high school) a blog assignment a week. They have to write based on a prompt I have provided and then comment on three other' stuff. I also do a pink slip policy whee if they do not have their homework I have them write me up a slip that says what they were assigned and when they got it and why they did not rurn it in, This is great communication back to the parents. I use Kidblogs for my blogs, which are closed and secure to protect student information.


SS Perkins said:
Sure, homework must be meaningful--why else do it? I want to assign homework that is an extension of what we are doing in class, such as if we have a discussion, then I'd like students to go home and write something based on it. Reading and studying for tests will also be homework. I'd also like to have creative writing assignments as homework sometimes. Speech and storytelling are a big part of how I teach English, so I'd also like to assign students to do interviews, oral practice, story gathering among relatives, etc. We'll see! Thanks for your input.

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