Friday, June 28, 2013

What's Homework Got To Do With It?

Every year I struggle with homework, especially math homework. I am conflicted in my beliefs. On the one hand, I think students need to practice. As they say - practice makes perfect. On the other hand, if a student doesn't "get it" or just doesn't do it, how does that help? 

A few years ago I read The Homework Myth  by Alfie Kohn. It made me want to hop right on the "no homework" train. Unfortunately that was impossible. My district mandates that we give a certain amount for homework Monday through Thursday.

There have been times I would teach a lesson and then assign the homework on the day's lesson. The next day we would take the first ten minutes of class to go over it. 

I have also tried the collect, correct, and return method. This was a major failure because it increased the amount of correcting I needed to do and the returned papers quickly found their way to recycling bin with barely a glance. 

I could go on and on.................

So, one day into summer vacation I am already thinking about revamping my homework policy yet again. My plan is to create homework packets that would be given out on Monday and be due Friday. This would eliminate taking time going over the homework at the beginning of class each day. The packet would contain review material, not what we were currently learning.  Hopefully this would allow for the students to be more successful completing the assignment. On Fridays, instead of a warm up, I would post the answers on the board and students will correct their own work. At least that is the plan at the moment.

How do you handle homework? What works for you? I would love to hear from you.


Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Freebie Linky

Sara from Innovative To The Core is hosting her first linky party and I just had to join. Sara is a 5th grade teacher who just started blogging too. Check out her blog and all the great freebies that have been linked.

My favorite freebie (at the moment) is my Be The Teacher game. It's my favorite because when the students play they get practice in reading, writing, and rounding decimals. Decimals are a large part of the fifth grade Common Core so this a fun activity to reinforce these skills.

Click on the picture above to get this freebie.


Sunday, June 23, 2013

June 23, 2013: A New Adventure Begins!

As the school year comes to an end, I am looking forward to the beginning of summer and the start of this blog. If you had told me a year ago that someday I would  have a blog, I would have said you were crazy. But here I am officially making my first blog post.

I started reading professional teacher blogs about a year ago and have never looked back. I have learned so much from all the wonderful bloggers out there. Being a 5th grade math focus teacher I particularly search for terrific math blogs. I am hoping to follow in their footsteps and share some of my ideas.

I thought I would start with a freebie! This is a Bingo Game I am doing this summer with my children. It is a fun way to keep them active physically and mentally. Before you begin, decide what the child will win when they make a bingo - go out for ice cream, stay up 30 minutes later, extra computer time - the possibilities are endless. Then each time your child completes one of the items, they color in the square. Six in a row and they have a bingo!

Click on the photo below to link to your freebie!

 I also included a blank version so you can customize your game if you choose.

Please consider becoming a follower. I will be posting new ideas and freebies in the coming weeks.

Also check out my store at TpT for math products and more freebies.

Classroom Freebies Manic Monday
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