Doug McClure
BCMS Homework Beliefs

*Homework is an important part of learning.


*Homework is directly connected to, and reinforces, classroom instruction.


*Homework is engaging and helps motivate students to learn.


*Homework builds academic confidence and never “hurts” a student’s learning.


*Homework is assigned when teachers are confident that all students have enough knowledge to work on their own with limited to no support from their teacher(s).


*One function of homework is to create prior knowledge.  This type of homework will either not be graded or only given a completion grade.


*Student success on homework has a strong correlation to student success on tests and quizzes.


*Grades reflect a student’s learning.  It is reasonable to expect that students with differing abilities will need to put in different amounts of effort to achieve mastery of the standards being taught.


*Homework never causes a grade to reflect something other than a student’s learning.  (Grades reflect effort when the work that students do is worthy of their time.)

Research on Homework

From Cathy Vatterott and Robert Marzano 

Ø Homework that is graded has a 28-percentile gain in student achievement second only to homework with teachers’ comments as feedback having a 30-percentile gain.  Homework that is assigned but not graded or commented on has an 11-percentile gain.


Ø Mastering a skill requires a fair amount of focused practice.


Ø Students should not have more than 60-80 minutes of homework per day in middle school.  (Remember that students have more than one class in a day.)


Ø To implement homework effectively we must:

                   -Connect homework to
                   classroom learning and clearly 
                   identify the 
purpose of each 

-Provide students with 
           relevant tasks that they can 
without adult help

                   -Use what we know about 
                    learning to design homework 
for individual