Homework

Students studying

Pool Academy is committed to furthering the learning of students by creating a programme of work to be completed outside of the normal school day.  We believe that well organised Homework can play a vital role in raising standards of achievement.  Homework tasks are intended to support work done in school and be an integral part of the students’ overall academic and intellectual development.


Purposes

Homework tasks will be set for a variety of reasons including:

- Contributing to sound study habits and encouraging students to develop the skills,
confidence and motivation needed to study effectively as independent learners.

- Consolidating and reinforcing skills and understanding developed in the classroom;

- Extending classroom learning;

- Providing feedback to the teacher regarding student understanding and progress;

- Encouraging students to learn independence, organisation and self discipline;

- Managing the demands and deadlines of examination and portfolio based courses at KS4;

- Promoting and sustaining the involvement of parents and carers in the management of students’ learning and keep them informed of the area of study undertaken by their child.

 

Homework may take many different forms for example:

Observation and recording, Project work, Coursework, Set exercises from sheets or textbooks, Reading for pleasure, Research, Organising work, Developing IT skills, Following up and developing class work, Collecting and collating, Learning vocabulary, formulae or spellings, Study in preparation for class work, assessment or test, Watching TV, listening to the radio or reading a newspaper, Reading to enhance knowledge, understanding and experience, Time for reflection, Investigations, Designing, Essay writing, Listening practice or rehearsal.

Homework tasks will increasingly be placed on the Virtual Learning Environment (VLE) which can be accessed by any internet connected computer, regardless of location or time.

These may be completed over a variety of different timescales dependant on the amount of allocated teaching time.  It is essential that students record all tasks in their planners, so that Homework can be monitored by tutors and the Student Guidance Team.

In KS3 students should spend no more than 30 minutes per subject each week.  In KS4 students should spend at least 30 and 60 minutes per subject each week.  If Homework is not directed by the teacher, KS4 students should take responsibility for their own study and complete between at least 30-60 minutes study each day.

We recognise that good habits of Homework should be established from the time the student arrives at Pool Academy in Yr7 building on Primary School experiences.  It is accepted that there will be peaks and troughs in the amount of work set and that the student is expected to acquire the skills necessary to cope with deadlines as they arise.  Tasks may be completed at home or in the library or homework club depending on the resources and level of support needed to complete them to an appropriate standard.

 

Subject Specific Breakdown

Art: Homework is integrated into and runs alongside the programme of learning at both Key Stages.

Drama: Drama Homework is not set at KS3.  In KS4 students will use Homework as preparation for practical and portfolio assessments.

DT: There are various Homework tasks set over the year.  For Food Technology this involves students collecting the necessary food items for practical lessons.  This is always written into student planners during the previous lesson so that students have time to gather together the items required.

English
: KS3- a range of independent research tasks and guidance sheets on independent reading tasks.  Homework for all years will be on the VLE.  Exam board papers for GCSE (so that pupils can look over the range of skills they will need for the Summer papers);  Advice pages and links to other English sites will also be on the VLE.

Geography: KS3 – Tasks will be set regularly and may include independent research or longer term practical or project based tasks. KS4 – Homework will be set weekly, and will have an increasing focus on exam preparation.

History: Homework tasks are set regularly for both Key Stages and can involve researching, planning, project work.

ICT: KS3— research tasks for planning projects. KS4— catching up on missed work and research tasks.

Maths: Tasks from the MyMaths website (www.mymaths.co.uk) have been identified to support pupils’ learning of the topics they will be studying during lessons.  Each task has been given a deadline although this may be extended by the individual teacher, in-line with the class’ progress through the material.  This list of topics is available on the school VLE. During each halfterm, other Homework tasks may be set which will be targeted at individual pupils’ needs and the deadline for these will be set by the individual teacher.
When completing the MyMaths tasks, pupils will need to log onto the website using the school’s log in details (Username: pool.  Password: maths) and then with their individual log in – this should have been given by the teacher and written in the pupil's planner.

MFL: Homework tasks are set regularly and should take around 30-60 minutes each week to complete.  Tasks may take a variety of forms such as:
- A reading or writing task
- Learning vocabulary
- Preparing for a speaking activity
- Revision for a test

Music: Homework task for KS3 are set every half term and should be completed over several weeks.  These tasks will mainly exist as research exercises on the topic studied in each project.

PE: Students should be organised, bringing in the correct kit and safety equipment for the different areas of the curriculum. Students will be made aware of PE extra-curricular clubs and out of school activities and encouraged to attend and participate.  A variety of practical activities and clubs outside of school would benefit the students’ fitness and skill level to enhance progress.

GCSE PE: Each term pupils will undertake assessed independent coursework tasks within the topics listed on the school’s VLE.  Also there are a range of online assignments, quizzes, tests and games which pupils will undertake throughout the GCSE course, also found on school VLE.  All coursework proformas, syllabus details, criteria for practical assessment are available as downloads on VLE.

RE: Homework tasks will be available for both Key Stages on the school’s VLE and pupils will be given guidance from their class teachers as to how and when to access these tasks.

Science: Regular Homework takes the form of:  A short answer Science Workbook which is supplied to each student and this forms a useful homework resource that they will regularly use.  A full colour printed Revision Guide which is supplied to every student and this contains all the notes, explanations and diagrams covering the topics they learn during their Key Stage.  This eliminates the need for unnecessary note taking and places some responsibility on the student to learn independently of the school. Part of the weekly Science Homework cycle will always involve referring to this guide and represents ongoing revision.