Degrees and Certifications:
Though some of this applies to an on-campus model, most advice applies to all schoolwork!
When doing homework, follow the expectations below.
* Find a quiet place and time to do your work free from distractions. Gather everything you need before you get started so you are ready and engaged when you do start.
* Read ALL directions and complete all steps for each problem. Pay attention to the strategies required and try your best to use them. If it is a word problem you MUST use appropriate strategies to complete.
* You must attempt all of the homework. Use problem solving strategies and perseverance to complete it.
* All work needs to be neat and organized so that you can best avoid mistakes and check for errors. If it is not readable it is the same as not doing it at all.
* If you get stuck or frustrated take a break and go back to it. Note why you are struggling, what you do not understand, what you are using to help you, and show what steps you took to attempt the problem. A blank page or a page that says “I don’t know” or “it’s too hard” is unacceptable.
* Talk to your teacher and ask questions. Do not wait until you go home and then tell your parents you do not understand. It is not their job to learn it or to teach it to you—they already took fourth grade!
Most nights student will have approximately 20-30 minutes of homework. This work will review previous content learned and allow for practice of new skills. There will be times when the skill is very easy and there will also be times that students will feel uncertain and the homework will not be as clear.
Wherever they are in their ability, the expectation is that they TRY. Fourth grade students are learning to be independent problem solvers. It is THEIR job to persist through homework even when it is hard. Parents are not expected to reteach/teach/or know the new strategies being learned. You can best support your child in homework by following the tips below.
* Check that they are filling out their agenda/planner to reflect what was learned and what is due.
* Check that homework is neat, organized, and complete.
* Keep a positive attitude about the new strategies used. Students take their cues from your math attitude—it’s proven!
* Ask your child to explain the new strategy to you by letting your child teach you and tell you why it works. That is a huge component in Engage New York.
* Ask your child how they did it in class, or what parts they do understand.
* Help them push through by prompting, “What would you try first? Why? Next? How?” etc…
* Ask your child if they know a different strategy that might work. If they are stuck they can try a different way-Mom and Dad’s “old school” style is DEFINITELY a legitimate style. Your student is just learning additional styles in order to truly understand WHAT and WHY something works, not just what to DO.
* If they are struggling and upset, allow them to take a break and encourage them that they shouldn’t know it all yet. This is homework, it is just practice and it will still be new and hard sometimes. If students knew all of their fourth grade math, they’d be in fifth grade!
* Please check that if they get stuck they are writing why they are struggling, what they do not understand, what they are using to help them, and show what steps they took to attempt the problem. A blank page or a page that says “I don’t gettit” or “it’s too hard” is unacceptable. The metacognition necessary to identify a breakdown in understanding is just as valuable as the homework itself!
* If you have questions please utilize the online resources provided on the teacher website or contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org