On any given day a student's homework would include reviewing the material we've covered since the last test. This may take just 5 - 10 minutes a night. Often this will include notes in the notebook. I require students to use the Cornell Method, or 2-sided, notetaking system. Students divide each sheet in the notebook by drawing a vertical line about 2 inches from the left margin. Notes are taken in the larger, right hand, side of the page. That evening the student MUST read his notes and write questions in the left hand section of the page which can be answered by the notes. Basically, he is writing a study guide or list of review questions. A student can then review the notes nightly, and ask himself (or have a family member ask him) the questions in the left margin. Answers are found directly to the right of each question, in the notetaking section of the page.
Check your agenda to review the essential questions that should be written there daily. Also look back and review any essential questions and materials we've covered since the last test.
If you have difficulty with the essential question, look back at the section of the textbook we may have used, your science notebook, or any papers we looked at on the topic. (Yes, that means you should be taking home your folder, notebook and textbook every day!)
Proving you can "do" what the essential question is asking might include telling someone else (or just reciting it for yourself) or writing it in your notebook.
Reviewing daily will pay off when you are assessed on a test. Just think how much time you will have put in studying by the day of the test!
An example of an essential question is, "What is weather?" When you can answer that question (from memory), you would be done with that day's science homework.
Your agenda is essential for homework completion. DON'T rely on your memory. Writing your assignments in your agenda is only half the job. When you get home, take out your agenda and READ over the essential question covered in your class that day, as well as any other specific assignments. As you complete the assignment, check it off in your agenda and place it in the appropriate subject's folder.
As we progress through the year, I will post the weekly list of essential questions and activities I plan to cover in science class. I will also post test and project dates, as well as other specific homework assignments.
The purpose of homework is practice. I won't assign busy work. You should always put forth your best effort. If I assign work, it has a purpose, such as telling me whether you understand a topic. I learn from your performance on any assignment. Your work tells me whether I need to reteach the topic, or whether you really understand it and we are ready to move on.
A student who does not complete a homework assignment will be asked to sign up for "homework hall," held after school the next day. If the student finishes the assignment and sees me from 7:25 - 7:40 a.m., the student does not need to attend homework hall after school. If the student does not have the assignment given to me by 7:40 a.m., he is expected to stay after school to complete the assignment. I will sign the student into homework hall in room S02. Time should not be taken to complete the assignment during classes that day. At homework hall, the student will complete the assignment. When the assignment is complete and correct, he/she is free to go.
Moral of the story: Do your assignments on time and to the best of your abilities!