HOT TOPIC: Homework Help
Volume 2, Issue 3 - September 18, 2005

When it comes to homework, our approach and philosophy has changed over the years. One thing that has remained constant, however, is that homework should be a reinforcement and extension of what is being taught in the classroom during the school day. This can be a challenge for struggling students and busy parents at home in the evening, as curriculum becomes more sophisticated at an earlier age. If homework seems insurmountable it loses its effectiveness as a learning tool.

The challenge for teachers is to design homework assignments in digestible chunks so that it is a positive reinforcement of skills and concepts. Beyond this, it's an excellent idea to offer resources parents and students can access at home to support them in successfully completing homework assignments. In another era this most likely would have been photocopied handouts given to parents at Back to School Night or reference works on closed reserve at the local public library. But with many homes now connected to the Internet, th3ese resources can be just a click away!

Consider the resources in this week's issue. Imagine posting them on your class homepage or sending them home with students to bookmark on their computers. Instantaneously you have created a network of homework supports from math and science to language arts and social studies that can be referenced whenever a student has the need. Not only are these recommended resources free and appropriate, they are regularly updated and require no extra attention from busy teachers. I hope you find this digital dozen a valuable asset for your students as we begin the school year.


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©2005 Walter McKenzie

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