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Old 09-15-2009, 10:22 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Does anyone have any thoughts on the necessity of home work in the first grade? My DD just started the first grade and is getting homework and is reacting fairly negatively to it. She generally has loved school and is proud that she can read and is very motivated to attend school and learn...however...she is fairly adamant that she doesn't want to do this homework thing. I dont' know if its just a beginning of the year transition and she will settle down. But she's been reduced to tears and tantrums and this is only the second week. Any thoughts from more seasoned people that may have been through this?
FWIW, what they are asking is fairly easy...she just doesn't want to do it.
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Old 09-15-2009, 11:16 PM
 
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I'm not totally against HW I actually like seeing how my DD thinks through certain assignments and assuming its jsut a few mintues and not jsut busy work I'm "okay" with it. My DD first grade gets a HW pack on Monday its due on Fridays. There are typically 4 things to do on it.
1) write her spelling words twice (borning but not too big of adeal)
2) use each word in a sentence her hardest assignment we've learned to divide this one
3) a math sheet
4) a language sheet
these ussally jsut take a few mintues to do including drawing and coloring..
She is also asked to read daily from eaither school home or liabary books.
Not Including her reading time (I often jsut count our bedtime reading time) HW takes between 5-15 mintues depending on how much we tackle and how focused she is. Reading adds on another 10 mintues or so.

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Old 09-15-2009, 11:19 PM
 
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My 1st grader only has homework on the weekend.
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Old 09-15-2009, 11:27 PM
 
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My first grader will be getting homework in a few weeks. We are on week 2 of school, I don't think homework will start til Oct. But, I agree that it is helpful to see exactly what they are working on in class, and to see how he responds to it. He does have to read nightly, and he really takes that seriously. I am also seeing that he is a better reader than I thought he was- still on easy readers, but he is more fluent than I thought (we really slacked on the summer reading, my 8.5yo did most reading over the summer to the littles)
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Old 09-15-2009, 11:30 PM
 
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So far my 1st grader has a math sheet to finish (I actually like them, they read the problems and color and draw answers in addition to just writing the numbers. It shows me she is actually following the directions) and at least 20 minutes of reading or being read to a night.
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Old 09-15-2009, 11:38 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I'm not totally against HW I actually like seeing how my DD thinks through certain assignments and assuming its jsut a few mintues and not jsut busy work I'm "okay" with it. My DD first grade gets a HW pack on Monday its due on Fridays. There are typically 4 things to do on it.
1) write her spelling words twice (borning but not too big of adeal)
2) use each word in a sentence her hardest assignment we've learned to divide this one
3) a math sheet
4) a language sheet
these ussally jsut take a few mintues to do including drawing and coloring..
She is also asked to read daily from eaither school home or liabary books.
Not Including her reading time (I often jsut count our bedtime reading time) HW takes between 5-15 mintues depending on how much we tackle and how focused she is. Reading adds on another 10 mintues or so.

Deanna
This actually sounds very similar to what DD has -- the sentences...a math sheet. except the language sheet is 6 sheets instead of 1. That seems to be the frustrating part for her because even though it is hard, she actually seems to like coming up with sentences. I just wasn't expecting such a negative response from her since she has really enjoyed pretty much all of her school experiences up until now from pre-k through the present. I hope it is just a transition thing.

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Old 09-16-2009, 12:20 AM
 
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DD1 is now in second grade and homework is much smoother going now. In Kindy, the homework was mostly fun and easy so moving up to 1st grade work was a bit of an adjustment. It took a few months for her to quit grumbling about it so hopefully things will get better at your house soon!

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Old 09-16-2009, 04:02 AM
 
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With DS, we really struggled with homework in 1st grade. DD is now is 1st grade and its much easier with her so far. They go to a private traditional school and we knew going in that this school believes in homework for every child every night. Not doing homework was not an option, especially as scholarship kids. So, we didn't have any choice other than change schools, which we didn't want to do. 1st grade homework is reading 1 phonics story, 1 math worksheet and 1 spelling task (writing words, write sentences, do crossword, something like that) each night. Its supposed to take 20-30 minutes. DS used to take more than an hour because he just would sit there and not actually do the work.

Whether it is "necessary" or not probably depends on your perspective. I actually think there is value in homework for several reasons, but I know lots of people (especially here) disagree. Approaching this I would start by finding out what the consequences for not doing homework are at this level. Is there really an option at all? If not, then I think you have to help her buckle down and do the work, even though that process might be unpleasent. If there really are options, then you are going to have to figure out how you feel about this, more about what she is reacting to, and how adament you want to be. If you feel very strongly, you may find yourself taking on the whole system, which takes a commitment from both you and your child.
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Old 09-16-2009, 11:09 AM
 
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I'd recommend you pick up a copy of "The Homework Myth" and "The Case Against Homework" at your public library.

There is no body of research that shows benefit of assigning elementary kids homework, and there is a great deal of opportunity cost associated with it.
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Old 09-16-2009, 11:17 AM - Thread Starter
 
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fyi, the consequences for not doing homework is that they don't get recess. which i think is pretty harsh.

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Old 09-16-2009, 11:44 AM
 
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My 1st grader has homework--but it is not overwhelming--though if he is tired--it can be terrible...I've learned quickly a few things to make it pleasant:

We do it after school,once he's had a snack-- belly full and not tired works best for him

We sit together and I watch him work on it--

I praise him for a great job as he works---he likes the praise and works to impress me--(hopefully I'm not setting up a bad pattern here)

He so far has A-B-C sheets Writing upper & lower case---one letter per night's home work--we're on E now. And he has 5 spelling words.

His teacher has a nice set up with a folder/ binder that comes home everyday so it's organized and we all know exactly what the homework is.
No homework on weekends--
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Old 09-16-2009, 12:04 PM
 
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I'm not totally against HW I actually like seeing how my DD thinks through certain assignments and assuming its jsut a few mintues and not jsut busy work I'm "okay" with it.

That's how I feel. When my son was in first, the only homework he had was reading every night.
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Old 09-16-2009, 12:25 PM
 
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fyi, the consequences for not doing homework is that they don't get recess. which i think is pretty harsh.
It was similiar here last year. They didn't miss all recess but they had to do there work at that time instead which often ment missing out. Again mixed feeling on how harsh the conquence was. This year because HW is turned in once a week the conquence is failing.

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Old 09-16-2009, 12:27 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I guess the reason i feel like it is harsh is because my daughter excels in academics and is actually ahead and struggles with social issues and i feel like play time with her friends is very important -- actually more important at this time than missing recess because she didn't feel like tracing words over and over.
ya know? i think i may need to discuss with her teacher.

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Old 09-18-2009, 12:58 AM
 
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fyi, the consequences for not doing homework is that they don't get recess. which i think is pretty harsh.
Even if my child turned their homework in early every time I would still fight this policy tooth and nail - I honestly believe it should be illegal, and does such a disservice to the children.

DS is in first grade and he gets roughly 2 math worksheets and 1 book packet each week. He complains that the math is "kindergarten stuff" (which it does seem to be actually - color all the triangles red, how many did you color, write the number 20 times, etc.). As for the book he has to read? The teacher reads it in class before it comes home and he memorizes it, so "reading" that takes him less than 2 min. And he complains the entire time! I'm waiting for any kind of "value" from his homework....
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Old 09-18-2009, 12:14 PM
 
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in your shoes, i would probably let my child make the decision, but with understanding of the consequences. unfortunately, if homework isn't an option, then opting out of it isn't an option either (which stinks, i agree). i would encourage your dd to complete her work at home. i would let her choose a comfortable place to do homework. i would sit right with her and help as needed. i would make a snack & juice available for her. but if she chose to not complete it, i would not fight about it. i would allow her that right, but i'd also remind her that the consequence will be missing recess and having to complete the work at school the following day. if she did miss recess, i would certainly sympathize, comfort, and listen to her. i would not say "i told you so" or be negative about it. i imagine (for my dd anyway) it would only happen a few times before homework was no longer a battle. i'm so sorry she dislikes it. i don't blame her honestly. i hope it gets better for your little girl. hugs.

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Old 09-18-2009, 12:16 PM
 
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I guess the reason i feel like it is harsh is because my daughter excels in academics and is actually ahead and struggles with social issues and i feel like play time with her friends is very important -- actually more important at this time than missing recess because she didn't feel like tracing words over and over.
ya know? i think i may need to discuss with her teacher.
oh yes! absolutely discuss it with her teacher first! i was under the impression you had already taken this step & were told it wasn't an option to opt out. definitely speak to the teacher first! my niece did not have to do homework in first grade as long as she maintained her grades.

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Old 09-18-2009, 12:34 PM
 
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I guess the reason i feel like it is harsh is because my daughter excels in academics and is actually ahead and struggles with social issues and i feel like play time with her friends is very important -- actually more important at this time than missing recess because she didn't feel like tracing words over and over.
ya know? i think i may need to discuss with her teacher.
No I understand its why I'm kinda mixed on the rule on one hand we've dissuced the kinda "logical" conquence of not doing it before so having to do it at a recess... but at the same time I consider recess just as vital. Its part of the reason as her parent I make sure she does complete her assignments and make sure the school hasn't oversteped what I feel she can handle. Lat year they risked missing there before lunch recess time kids that needed to finish remained in the classroom during the 15 mintues (or untill done) before lunch they did still get there morning recess after lunch recess and afternoon recess.

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Old 09-18-2009, 01:27 PM
 
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Not including reading a book of her choice, my DD only had about 10-15 minutes of homework per night as a first grader (last year).

We struggle with getting our oldest DS, now 12 and a 7th grader, to do his homework and actually turn it in. This year he doesn't have an excessive amount of it, yet he still finds every excuse under the sun NOT to do it... and then complains when we put him on restriction and take his bike/game boy/computer access away when he brings home bad grades on his progress reports.

If anything, the dubious importance of doing homework in the first grade is to get them into the habit of doing it and turning it in, so it's not such a rude shock when homework becomes an important part of the grade you receive in the class.
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Old 09-18-2009, 08:59 PM
 
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If anything, the dubious importance of doing homework in the first grade is to get them into the habit of doing it and turning it in, so it's not such a rude shock when homework becomes an important part of the grade you receive in the class.
That particular argument is always lost on me. Let's start making kids pay taxes and get colonoscopies because these are unpleasant things they will have to face some day.
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Old 09-19-2009, 12:34 PM
 
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That particular argument is always lost on me. Let's start making kids pay taxes and get colonoscopies because these are unpleasant things they will have to face some day.
Ok I almost spit soda on the computer screen when I read this! LOL! But it is a good and valid point.
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Old 09-19-2009, 12:42 PM
 
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Have you asked her why she doens't want to do it?

have you tried the 2 choices thing? "Do you want a snack first, or hw?"

Can you set a timer to make it a challenge with a reward for beating the timer?

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Old 09-20-2009, 07:38 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Have you asked her why she doens't want to do it?

have you tried the 2 choices thing? "Do you want a snack first, or hw?"

Can you set a timer to make it a challenge with a reward for beating the timer?
I have asked her and she says that school time is for school and home time is for play. i'm using my words here, but that was her gist. Its hard because i can't totally disagree but i do try to convey the importance of doing what her teachers have asked. I sat with her the entire time but she just broke down into utter misery. i can't imagine that is the goal.

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Old 09-21-2009, 11:12 AM
 
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I have asked her and she says that school time is for school and home time is for play. i'm using my words here, but that was her gist.
Out of the mouths of babes...
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Old 09-21-2009, 04:04 PM
 
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Wow that's a tough one, especially if you secretly agree (I do). All I can suggest is either talk with her teacher or see if there's a way she can stay at school for 15 min after class and do her work there - that way she's still in her "job" mode. Good luck!
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Old 09-21-2009, 04:37 PM
 
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My son has about 10-15 minutes of homework most days, and then reading time, too. We do the homework part together right after he gets home while having his snack, and we talk about his day, and he tells me all about the things that they are learning and doing in school that's related to this homework.

It's actually one of the best parts of our day, and we both look forward to it a great deal.
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Old 09-21-2009, 08:11 PM
 
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DD is in 1st grad but hasn't started to get homework yet they don't get it til after back to school night on the 25th.

It will be like in K, a packet they get on monday and return on friday, with 1 or 2 pages a night.


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Old 09-21-2009, 08:15 PM
 
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.

If anything, the dubious importance of doing homework in the first grade is to get them into the habit of doing it and turning it in, so it's not such a rude shock when homework becomes an important part of the grade you receive in the class.

I think this is BS.
My dd has homework regularly for the first time as a fifth grader. She is developmentally ready to take responsibility for it and does so. In first grade, the few times she brought something home, it was clearly my homework. Um, no.
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Old 09-21-2009, 10:58 PM
 
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FWIW, what they are asking is fairly easy...she just doesn't want to do it.
Amy
I totally sympathize with you. I understand about having a kid who needs to work more on the social issues.

Would it be possible to give her more advanced work? Can you modify the assignment so it presents some challenge and engages her more? Could you ask the teacher for some suggestions? My kid the other day was totally engaged with this soduku puzzle and not wanting to do some stupid math assignment and I totally couldn't blame her. The soduku was a better use of time if you ask me. We don't struggle too much right now with doing it, but I could totally see myself where you are. My kid has gotten good at adding her own to the assignments. Like she'll alphabetize the words or add negative numbers to the counting assignments. Our teacher also gives this math thing with 2 higher pieces on it so that gives a bit of challenge.

My school has a broad mix of achievement levels and I was talking to some other parents who were modifying homework for their kids as well. The teacher didn't seem to care.

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