Thursday, April 9, 2015

More learning@home

I have blogged about homework before and do not wish to repeat myself, but would like to share this half term's work and show how it enriches our enquiry based learning in school. I changed the way I set homework in school after having a big think about it last year and gauging opinion from my PLN through a crowd-sourced document. I know that Hattie says that the worst thing you can do is give children projects, but equally he says that the best homework is that which enriches work in class. That's exactly what this homework does - and I'm not sure that they would be classed as projects even thought that's what I call them. The fact that children show an obvious pride in their work and want to show it off to others means that it has already had more than 'an effect of zero'.   

At the beginning of term, as always, I stuck a homework option sheet in each child's learning@home book with a range of choices. Children may decide to do something that isn't included in the sheet, which is absolutely fine as long as it follows the same theme.

The homework arrived steadily over the last two weeks of term and was as delightful as ever. There were information books and some lovely pieces of fiction - one where I starred as a walrus! I'm taking it as a compliment that I was included in the story of course! It is a treat to see the variety of work that has been done and quiet often I learn about talents that I may not otherwise have known. 

Their homework sits beautifully alongside art work and written work that they have completed in class.  

The models are gorgeous and included some very characterful polar bears, some great igloos and arctic tableaux. There is clearly adult input in some of them, but I imagine that it is a lot more enjoyable than parents trying to get their child to complete worksheets.

Three of my children extended their learning at school by creating similar iBooks at home. They were rightfully proud of their work and enjoyed presenting it to the class.

iBooks made at school

Some children decided to cook and we all enjoyed the delicious arctic cake and polar bear biscuits that were brought in. You can see more work on our class blog. What I really love about doing homework in this way (as opposed to worksheet style homework) is that the children have some ownership over it and I like to think that there are lots of conversations about the topic during their learning at home. Parents impart their wisdom and share their ideas, then learn/work alongside their children. Perfect!

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