Sunday, August 19, 2012

Calling all Past and Present K Teachers...and a Reminder!

 

What do you do for homework? 

Okay blogging buddies!  As you all know I will be teaching Kindergarten for the first time in a decade this year.  What you may or may not know however is that I will be working with three other teachers who will also be brand new to Kindergarten this year.  One of which will be a first time teacher (EVER), one who has NEVER taught K and one who hasn't taught K in OVER a decade.  So as you can imagine...we will need some guidance from some FABULOUS and experienced K teachers.  Tonight I am coming to you to ask about your Homework policy.  I personally have very mixed feelings about homework in general.  I know about all the research out there that says homework is really quite useless, in fact it was one of the topics I researched and reported on in graduate school.  However, I am transferring from a school with a very high parent participation and I would argue that homework for those students did indeed make a difference.  My new school (from what I have been told) will be the complete opposite with little to no parent involvement.  So as our team sits down to discuss our plans for the year I would love to know what other K teachers do or don't do for homework. If you have a post on your blog already addressing that subject let me know or if you have more to say than what will fit in the comment box please feel free to email me at rdziegler@wsfcs.k12.nc.us

I also wanted to remind you all about the fabulous First Day of Kindergarten Linky Party!  I know that most of you just had your first day or will have it within the next week or two so be sure to share your awesome plans:) 

5 comments:

Mary said...

I send a homework packet home on Monday and ask for it returned and completed on Friday.
Mary
Sharing Kindergarten

Kindergarten Myles said...

I think the right homework is important for kids and parents. Some parents don't know how to help their kids and are thankful to have something meaningful to do to help their child's education. A small amount of homework teaches responsibility. My biggest must do is readers! I send home black and white readers. I even brought in my own paper when the supply was low. For my kids who don't have books, they are precious to them. I'll write them notes to circle certain sight words or rhymes. They help build confidence in all kids.
Jenn

Stephanie @ mrsasroom.blogspot.com said...

I agree with Kindergarten Myles! Reading is SO important! My kids took home little paper readers (or actual emergent readers when I had them available) EVERY night! It worked the best when I included a small instruction sheet so the parents knew what to do with the books. Step one always said, "Sit your child in your lap so both of you can see the book." The rest of the directions would tell them to read and discuss the title, author, and illustrator, to take a picture walk before reading, and to point to the words while reading. Then, I would give them specific tasks to do after reading. I would change them from week to week by having them echo read, choral read, predict, retell, talk about the characters or plot, and/or find certain letters or sight words. At the bottom of the directions page there would be a space for some type of response. They would draw their favorite character, favorite part, the beginning, middle, or ending, the setting, etc. It really helped the parents to know HOW to read with their child and WHAT to say to them while reading!! Hope that helps!

~Stephanie
Mrs. A's Room

Dish it Up said...

In our kindergarten classes we send home homework on mondays and ask for it to be returned on Friday.
Our homework consists of a checklist for math, language arts and motor skills.
Such as for Language Arts it might be.
I practiced identifying my letters.
I practiced telling the characters and setting of the book.
I practiced rhyming words.
Math
I practiced couting to 20.
I practiced writing numbers.
I practiced identifying shapes.
Motor Skills
I practiced writing my name.
I practiced tying my shoes.

To this checklist we also attach a math and language arts worksheet. We sometimes attach a sheet of letters or list of HF words to practice with.
I keep track of who turns in homework each week and then every nine weeks I send home a coupon for a dilly bar at Dairy Queen. (My family owns dairy queen so I just make these myself and hand them out.)
I hope this helps.

Gary said...

You are right about the research surrounding homework but many parents want their kids to have it and the kids themselves feel like big boys and girls when they have homework so we compromise.

At the beginning of the year I stress that kids and parents read together every night. The children select a trade book from around the room and a few small leveled texts. If my goal is to develop expressive language (I teach a diverse class of deaf, hard of hearing and hearing children) or promote interactions with books, this may include wordless picture books to get them talking about the pictures.

The books go home in a baggie and are returned the next day. During our Open School Night we talk with parents about how they can support the reading at home because some of them may be unsure or perhaps illiterate or second language learners uncomfortable with it. And on our class page on our school website we post ideas for how to read with your child as well as putting this on the inside of the communication folders which go home every night. This is in keeping with what Kindergarten Myles and Stephanie wrote.

As the year goes on I incorporate the kinds of things Dish It Up does. I want her to send me a coupon for a dilly bar!

Good luck!

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