Below are some ideas for you and your child to review to supplement any homework time that you would like to use more constructivley.• Reading a novel, short story, or non fiction book for 15-20 minutes. Students can sit there and read quietly to themselves, but how do you know that they are really reading? You can actively read with them or ask them a couple of comprehension questions at the end. A more passive way that you can participate and have your child benefit from the practice is to have your child read for 5- 10 minutes out loud to you from across the room. This will help students hear their own voice so that are not so shocked when they hear their own voice during class time while discussing educational topics.• Math facts is another easy skill to practice. Knowing math sums and differences using 10, 20, 50 and 100 is a very useful skill. Students will be learning Multiplication and Division facts from December to January where they will be required to review and know them. There are many iPad Apps that provide practice for Math facts. Why not use the technology if they are able to learn and have fun doing it?• Words Their Way: Students will be engaged in this spelling program throughout the year. Students will be given word lists through the year (approximately 17-20 lists) with a worksheet that allows them to study the process of the patterns of spelling words and their meanings. There are 5-6 different exercises that students need to complete. They should be working on the study sheet and reviewing the list for 5-10 minutes a night. Tests will be held on Monday afternoons and lists will be distributed on Wednesdays.• Writing: Students can practice their writing. Even writing out a list of 5 events that happened through the day in chronological order is a useful exercise. Ensuring that each sentence starts with a capital, ends with a punctuation mark and has a consistent verb tense (most likely past tense) is an important skill.• Organizing and using the student agenda for upcoming extracurricular events, tests, outside sport team and music practices or lessons, projects and assignments is a very useful skill. This is a skill that takes practice too! Having a student make their own healthy lunch for the next day at least once a week is also a very useful skill to practice.• Going for a short jog around the block doing some physical exercise. If your child is someone who you feel is involved in too much screen time, have them go outside and run or walk around the block with you. Good physical health contributes to a healthy learning environment. Students also have to develop physically as well.
I have listed 6 different items that if a child did only this every evening for 10 minutes each they would be doing 1 hour's worth of homework. I qualify this as actual study time that they are committing to growing as a student. Perhaps designating one or two of these things each evening will help provide a more consistent structure around homework. Perhaps your child can aim towards completing each of the items in the checklist over the span of a week and you can reward your child with an activity as an outting or added screen time.