How Teachers Can Facilitate better Homework Submission (Part 2 of 2)
Posted by: | on July 27, 2012
Yesterday we talked about the first part of homework guidelines and tools teachers can use to facilitate better homework submission (See Homework Guidelines Teachers Can Use in Their Class Part 1 of 2). We discussed the tools teachers can use to monitor homework submission; the advantages of using these assignment tools; the data a teacher can obtain from observing homework submission and lastly the importance of facilitating proper homework submission as a homeroom adviser.
Today, we are going to continue discussing strategies homeroom advisers can do to promote better homework submission.
2. During homeroom class in the afternoon, we look at our homework chart and check how many subjects have assigned work for the next day. If time permits, we as a class do the homework during this time. I also use this time to teach study skills to answer homework. This is an opportune time to hit several birds with one stone. The students have less homework and sometimes no homework anymore to bring at home, I get to teach a study skill and the class discusses strategies how best to answer a problem. It is one of my favorite cooperative learning experiences.
3. Finally I have star chart as a reward monitor. Since I’ve handled lower and higher elementary, my rewards star chart can also be modified depending on the grade level.
Pointers for making a Rewards Star Chart:
a. For older kids, I make them earn more stars and more days to accomplish the task before they can receive their reward while it is the reverse for younger kids. For example, for grades level 4 to 6 the duration is two to 4 weeks while for grade level one to two its one to two weeks.
b. A deadline is important to avoid dragging the reward giving.
c. The rewards are determined by the students. I let them choose three rewards in order of their preference. The preference is usually decided by voting. The reward with the most number of votes is the highest reward. An example of rewards my students have chosen is water balloon fight for most liked, movie and popcorn day for their second like and lastly is Gadgets Day where they can invite schoolmates and classmates during homeroom and play with their gadgets.
d. Since the goal is to accumulate as many stars and to keep on improving, I have a star meter. For example, ten stars should be earned to get the water balloon fight, 9 stars for movie and popcorn day and 8 stars for gadgets day. Each category corresponds to Excellent, Very Good and Good.
Advantages of a homework rewards chart:
a. This strategy is helpful to the class because it fosters cooperation among classmates. If a classmate has difficulty turning in his homework on time, his or her classmates help remind him. Sometimes, I hear stories from students who even call their classmates and friends in the class to help remind them of homework or if their class is absent that day.
b. I see the class working as a team especially when the star charts is almost filled or if the class is doing consistently well and there is a high chance that they will get an Excellent mark as a class. The excitement is in the air every morning as each student monitors their seatmate or friends or when they form homework buddies and partners to help the class get their desired reward.
Disadvantage of a homework rewards chart:
However, watch out also for tendency to be overzealous students who might reminding their classmates in an exaggerated manner. I usually notice this from students who have difficulty relating with other people and/or reading non-verbal queues. These students can get too serious and instead of fostering cooperation the reminders might result to annoyance and even bullying. As a teacher, you are there to facilitate a friendly and cooperative atmosphere in your classroom. Remind your students to keep the eye on the ball. It’s not about the getting the perfect star chart or the rewards. The goal of each student is to do their schoolwork independently and to develop class cooperation.
I recently got hold of new strategies teachers can use to facilitate better homework submission. You can add these strategies in your homework guidelines or make a homework tool for it. However, the bonus post I will be making tomorrow will be based only from my material. Special Education Philippines have not tested it or implemented it. We will be excited though to hear your feedback in case you want to implement it in your class. For now, let’s see each other again tomorrow.
Let’s hear about your thoughts of the homework submission strategies discussed today. Tell us what you think by commenting below.