Homework is a vital part of the learning process, helping pupils to consolidate work done in school and develop time management and independent study skills.
The setting of homework applies to all pupils in the school, irrespective of ability, and all subject areas should have clear homework policies detailing the frequency, length and nature of the homework to be set.
Each pupil is given a homework diary that supports them with the skills of planning and organisation and additionally develops home-school partnerships. The diary acts as a record for teachers and parents of the work that has been set for pupils. The subject teacher should record non-completion of homework in the diary. Form teachers are expected to check the use of homework diaries on a weekly basis and monitor the non-completion of homework.
Most parents recognise the value of homework. Form teachers should contact the parents of pupils experiencing difficulties in completing work set for homework.
- Be set regularly
- Be marked according to the department’s marking policy and returned promptly
- Target differentiated needs
- Contribute to the development of pupils as independent learners.
All teachers have a responsibility to mark the work done by their pupils. A teacher’s marking accords status to the work of a pupil and pupils should feel that their work is important and has a purpose. The pupils’ ability to assess themselves is also developed through good marking and this is an important part of the Teaching/Learning process.
Teachers should plan their work with the marking load in mind. The written word is not the only method of reinforcing learning and there are a variety of approaches to marking that may be employed. However, written work that is given and then ignored will adversely affect the future performance of pupils.
Good marking results in pupils having a clear idea of their strengths and weaknesses and gives guidance for future development. Department policies on marking should ensure that pupils are regularly provided with opportunities to:
See the assessment criteria in advance of undertaking the task
Benefit from constructive and detailed feedback that identifies strengths and weaknesses and offers guidance for improvement.
These will encourage the active involvement of pupils in their own learning and develop their capacity for self-assessment and target-setting.
Measures should also be taken within subject areas to ensure consistency in marking. It is good practice for subject leaders to collect samples of marking for standardisation purposes.