Reading Homework Routine

Good Day, Literacy Land Followers!  I'm Deniece from This Little Piggy Reads.  Today's topic is a HOT one!
Did you cringe or smile?  Teachers have definite opinions on homework - some assign homework every night and some see it as a chore.  So, here are my 2 cents.

Personally, I'm not a fan of homework.  I prefer to spend my evenings not grading.  All that said, at my school it is an expectation to send homework (no more than 30 mins. per subject per night).  I prefer to send a homework packet on Monday that is due on Friday.  Here is what I put inside my packet.
Cover Page - spelling words, homework schedule, notes at the bottom. 

On the inside, I include my Spelling Homework Choice Boards. 

I also include a Reading Log

I also include a differentiated fluency passage from our state adoption.  There is usually a short vocabulary worksheet.  If it's testing season, I include a testing style passage that students must use their strategies on. 

My packets are due on Friday.  During bell work, my students put their packets on the corner of their desk, I stamp and collect the packet.  If their spelling choice board is complete, I put a ticket on their desk.  Then, right before our spelling test, I draw 1 ticket out of the hat and that person gets an automatic 100!  The winner goes to my classroom library and reads while I'm giving the test.  I go through and quickly call the parents of students who didn't turn in their homework packets.  This is an expectation from our administration.  Then, I grade while students are testing and return their packets the same day they turned them in.  

How do you do homework in your classroom?


  1. Unintentional? You call parents who didn't turn in homework packets.
    I laugh and cringe at the same time. My 7 year old had to stay inside from recess because she did not have her homework done. When I asked her teacher what she did during recess, (as I noticed the homework was still not done), the teacher told me, "She sat with her head on her desk. Homework is to be done at home." We have never missed a homework due date since my baby had to sit for 15 minutes doing nothing. I've rarely felt so angry.
    This is my 28th year teaching. I do not believe in homework. My child has so much homework, we have little time to read. If a child spends 7.5 hours in class, homework is over the top. I do not want to even look at it the next day. Children need time to read, play, do sports, play instruments, play games with the family, be with friends and family, and in my favorite scenario (an idea from one of my gifted students), to laze on their beds and THINK. They get home at 4:00, do homework, eat, fit in a lot of the above..., and then retire by 9:00 or 10:00.

    I have taught first - eighth grade. My thinking is anything not finished in class, long-term projects, and READING every day - that is the only homework children should have. I know math teachers disagree... and I will certainly have to face that battle soon. But my husband will get to deal with that!
    So, back to my first line... who do you think is responsible for the homework? Parents or students?

    1. Rhonda,
      Of course that was a typo. I called parents whose third grade children didn't turn in their homework.

      My entire team gave homework packets that were due on Friday. Our team policy was that if students didn't turn in their packets on Friday, we made parent contact and let them know it was due Monday or would become a 50 in our gradebook (we are not allowed to give 0's). Our Principal set the expectation that we notified parents if homework isn't turned in. Our grading policy required that we gave 1 homework grade per week.

      If you notice, my position on homework is that I don't like to give it. However, I work in a district where we have set guidelines. In my current position, I do not have to give homework or grades. I do project based learning with rubric style grading. I LOVE it!


  2. I wish I didn't have to give homework, but my district makes us give homework. I just give a small packet like you do, but a little simpler. I do Fun Friday on Friday afternoons. Those who have all their homework and must do's done get to play games. If they don't, they work on that during that time. I get most of mine turning in homework that way.

  3. Fun Friday is a great idea if you're self-contained! I was departmentalized, so I saw my students throughout the day. That is the main reason I instituted the "spelling test drawing". I didn't give grades on spelling homework & the drawing to get a 100 was their incentive for doing spelling homework.

  4. I give similar homework as it our school's expectation too. I LOVE the "spelling test drawing"! I will so be using this! Thanks!!