In any human pursuit, practice leads to improvement. Homework is essential to classroom learning. This is especially true in the upper secondary years, where there is a great amount of content to cover, where sophisticated skills must be practiced and where additional reading and reflection will always enhance learning.
Trinity has always valued homework as an important part of boys’ education. To establish the habit, so that it is a habit by the time boys reach Years 11 and 12, it’s important to start early.
Here are some top tips:
- When homework is set, it’s imperative your son understands what is required. If he is unsure initially, he will be less sure that evening, when a lack of clarity could turn a simple task into an overwhelming hurdle. If they are at all unsure, boys should ask their teacher to explain exactly what is expected.
- They should ascertain approximately how long the task is supposed to take them. Sometimes teachers will underestimate the time required, but boys’ own lack of clarity will lead them to spend far longer on the task than expected.
- You should intervene if you find your son has an enormous homework load one evening. It is not feasible for teachers to coordinate the setting of homework on a daily basis. It usually evens out fairly well but there will be occasions when, unbeknown to staff, a boy collects an unachievable set of homework tasks for a particular evening.
- Encourage your son to plan his homework time carefully. Leaving things to the last minute is a formula for overload. It’s hard to be sympathetic to a boy who leaves several tasks to the night before they’re due and finds himself with an insurmountable amount of work to complete in one night. Planning and pacing are vital, and in themselves, are also important skills to learn.
School is a boys’ full-time job, meaning hours of learning need to be complemented by further work at home. However, boys also need balance in their lives – time for sport, family and sleep. Where these facets are ignored, a boy’s health and wellbeing will suffer. We want boys to do well academically and to lead happy, balanced lives. Thus, homework, kept in sensible perspective but diligently and intentionally tackled, will continue to be an important part of life.
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