What is your philosophy on homework?  I have been doing some research where some schools are instituting a no homework policy.  How do you feel about this?  As a math teacher, I feel homework is necessary for students to master the skill being taught.  Homework is also a good way to instill a good work ethic in students.  Homework, however, needs to be seen as meaningful to the students and not just busy work.

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It really depends - for applied, I try to have the kids do the work in class and the academics seemed to be motivated to do it at home. I try to tell the students it is like practicing for a sport, the more they practice, the better they are going to be at game (test) time.
I also teach math in 4th grade and I think homework is important. I use it as a credit/ no credit even if it isn't done but then they have to get it signed by an adult stating that they tried. My expectation is that they participate in classroom discussions about the homework though. I always try to link things to sports and how do you get better at something or find out what you are having problems with, you practice. That is what homework in my opinion should be a place for students to practice a skill they have learned without other people around helping to fill in gaps. My students also correct their own work, again expected to ask questions when they get something wrong.
When I was teaching high school math, I found that quite a few students did not complete homework and as a result, became further and further behind. I also found that many of the parents could not help their children with the homework. So I asked my principal if I could try something new (for this school). We had block scheduling and I arranged my class so that I taught a lesson, we did an activity, and then they did "class work alias homework." I was available to help them as needed and they had a required amount to complete or it did become real homework.

I found that students now had my help and so they learned and everyone stayed on track without anyone getting further and further behind. My philosophy about homework is that some form of practice is needed, but this practice can be during school or at home. For me and my students it worked out that it could be done in the classroom.
Block scheduling would be ideal to help with the homework "piece" of learning. However, I only have 50 minutes in a class period to get done what I need to. Typically, I leave the last 5-10 minutes for them to start their homework. This gives them time to look at the problems, get started, and ask for help if they need it. I find that if students understand the work and know they can do it, then it tends to get finished for homework. I agree that the practice/homework can be done in or out of the classroom. Unfortunately due to time constraints, it has to be done outside of class. I do though have "practice days" where no new skill is taught; we simply practice the skills and make sure everyone understands before we move on. This is essential to success in a math classroom.
This is a really interesting topic for me. I have two stepkids: my stepson is a high school freshman, and my stepdaughter is in 7th grade. My high-schooler rarely has homework (or so he claims) while my 7th grader spends a minimum of 1-2 hours a night on homework. (Important to note: she has dyslexia, so it takes her a bit longer in general.)

I'm constantly battling with him about this. Frankly, I'm surprised that he has such a minimal workload. He comes out, goes out to play for a bit, then immediately wants to watch TV or play video games. I want him to read, and he's not having it.

Homework may seem unnecessary, but I think it's incredibly important for a multitude of reasons, most importantly: using your brain. I think homework reinforces what's been taught in class, helps develop critical work skills, and keeps kids from "vegging out."
I teach 1st grade and I do send homework home. Usually it is something that doesn’t take too long, but a practice of something that they can independently do as review. I send one page a night. The biggest reason I send it home is to build responsibility. For that reason alone I feel that homework is extremely valuable.
I think every assignment needs to have an impact. This year I reduced the lab/homework in my classes from four or five assignments a week to one or two. When I redesigned my assignments I made sure that there was a reason for each part of it.
Students should learn that homework is a part of life, considering it will be given if they continue to college. Though at the same time, homework can bring students down and make them feel overwhelmed with the work. An idea I have would be offering homework as extra credit. This way students that want/need the extra help or extra points can do it while those who don't, do not have to. Another idea is to offer "no homework" passes as a reward. This way students have to earn the right to not due homework. Hope these ideas help!
I totally agree with you.
I agree that homework just seems to be used to keep students busy but at the same time they are able to work individually and see if they are understanding the material. It also gives the teacher to see where they stand in an educational point of view. If everyone seems to do well then the teacher can move on to new things. it also depends on the subject and grade level.
I think that homework is really important for a student. Taking the time to work through some homework at home often makes more of an impact than the student realizes. Sometimes it is that little bit extra that finally gets the point across to a student, or helps them to remember certain material. It also teaches the student to be self-disciplined. However, after saying that, I think that homework has the potential to be more harmful than helpful if too much is pushed on the student.
I teach 5th graders (all subjects) and have done a lot of reading, processing, and changing of my homework policy. A few years ago I began to really look at what I assigned and the benefit to the students' learning process. Over many changes in my policy over they years, I came to a place last year where I no longer assign homework. Students are still responsible for assignments and given class time to complete it. If they do not finish, they take the work home and turn it in the next day. I assign a few math problems that are new concepts so that I can see quickly if students are getting it or not. If they aren't I don't want them practicing over and over the wrong method for solving a problem. Many of my parents are not able to help their students with their math. I believe that the incentive is strong to get work done in a timely manner (in class), so they don't have homework.

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