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Homework in Kindergarten

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#1 *molly*

Posted 12 February 2019 - 09:53 PM

Homework in kindergarten - standard or not? I had the idea that homework has been shown to not improve learning in the younger grades - so why are we still getting it?

My DD is five and has just started kindergarten and we’ve been asked to do 10-15 minutes of work on the sound of the day, each night. Plus she will start getting readers soon.

I work 3 days a week and on those days I leave work at 430, arrive home with exhausted DD and 2 year old DS at 5.15, and need to get dinner ready by 6 to avoid hangry meltdowns. Am I really expected to sit my 5 year old down at 530pm and make her do homework?? How do others manage this?

So far she is happy to do it because they’ve talked it up in class but it’s only been 2 days. I’m finding it annoying and stressful already.

#2 ~river song~

Posted 12 February 2019 - 09:59 PM

It’s a no from me!! Other than reading each night - of which we do our own books as the home readers bore my kids (and me) to tears we don’t do anything formally outside of school hours. However there is lots of organic learning that occurs in our home where new skills are practiced through everyday life.
But at 5yrs old it’s a ridiculous expectation. I’d be opting out

#3 PrincessPeach

Posted 12 February 2019 - 10:02 PM

We have had homework sent home. We get a week to do it.

So far it's been tracing over their name & drawing a picture of themselves.

Although at our school, after hours care has a set time for the kids to do their homework.

#4 Riotproof

Posted 12 February 2019 - 10:02 PM

Can it be done in the car in the morning? I don’t think it has to be a big deal, I’d be erring on the 10 minute side myself.

#5 Paddlepop

Posted 12 February 2019 - 10:03 PM

Is kindergarten FYOS or the year before school?

I'm not a fan of homework.

#6 EsmeLennox

Posted 12 February 2019 - 10:06 PM

How much work can you do on the sound of the day? I would say ‘thanks, but no thanks’.

On the reading front, one of the the most important things you can do is read to and with your child, so I’d do the readers as part of a nightly reading routine, but I’d spend more time with you reading a book that is interesting and pleasurable and just a little on the school reader.

#7 *molly*

Posted 12 February 2019 - 10:12 PM

This is FYOS. Can't be done in the car. They have a blank workbook with a page for each letter and are supposed to practice writing it, cutting letters and pictures out of magazines of things that start with that sound etc.

On it's own, it's not onerous, but the expectation that it will be done every day is annoying to me. For kids just starting kindergarten. We have other commitments, for example DD also has speech therapy practice which she needs to do every day. I don't work particularly late but by the time we get home it's getting late, everyone is tired and hungry, 2 year old is teary and tantrummy.

Part of me feels like this is a continuation of the sexist assumption that the mother will or should be be home all afternoon to sit with the child and help them do their homework. Because the result is that I do feel like maybe I should cut back my work hours so I can get home a bit earlier and get it done.

Edited by *molly*, 12 February 2019 - 10:20 PM.

#8 Dianalynch

Posted 12 February 2019 - 10:23 PM

Reading together, you to her and in time her to you, chatting about the story etc should be the only 'homework' in Fyos. Everything else can be done in school hours.

#9 Riotproof

Posted 12 February 2019 - 10:24 PM

Ooooh. That’s different to how I imagined.

Do they really expect that every night? Or is it once a week?

#10 Caribou

Posted 12 February 2019 - 10:33 PM

You typically have a week to do it.
In most cases you have the weekend.
We set aside ten minutes to do it. We get home, get DD riled up enough to wake up for homework. So food and a drink. No longer than 10-15 mins. We do it no more than twice a week.

Hone reader, I do once a week. We used to do home reader on way to speech therapy. It would help DD with her stutter. This might e an option for you once your DD starts to pick up words. They do develop the basics quickly enough. Our speechie was even happy to use homework from school as part of therapy. Cut my time with work immensely.

You don’t need to cut back work hours. It’s just going to take a few weeks to find the perfect time to slot it all in.

For the most part, I found teacher never expected all tasks to be done, but did put a great empathis on hone readers.
Discuss with the teacher what their expectations are. You may find they’re happy for you DD to only complete as much as you or your DH can help her complete. Even if it’s only on weekends.

As for dinner, meal prepping, slow cookers band making large batches to stretch two nights at a time is your friend. Ie. large lasagna can easily be 2 nights dinner. Slow cooker same thing. It frees up your time every second day for homework or unwinding with kids.

Edited by Caribou, 12 February 2019 - 10:36 PM.

#11 harryhoo

Posted 12 February 2019 - 10:46 PM

We got it FYOS but we didn't do it. DS was tired. He did his reader every night and we did sight words 🙄 and then we read another book to him. He is in year 1 now, and he's done about 5 mins the last 2 nights. I'm not going to force him to do it though.

#12 -Belinda-

Posted 12 February 2019 - 11:31 PM

We had letter of the week in fyos, every day is madness. Feedback fron working parents meant it was sent home Tues so could be done over weekend. Whenever we had junk mail and local papers, I'd cut out good pictures for any letter and they went into a pile. Kid needed to shuffle thru pile to find. Internet images for the hard ones!!

Reader done in bed each night with a cuddle.

#13 mpoppins92

Posted 13 February 2019 - 12:02 AM

Could you opt out of the sound homework and just focus on sounds while you’re reading?

I see the logic. Repeat practice helps kids learn their sounds which is important but I’d rather my students parents read anything at all each night to their child than do onerous homework tasks.

I have a year three class and their only homework is reading. PP isn’t wrong, research is increasingly against homework. However, for a struggling child I’d send key concepts home. You just run out of time to consolidate in class.

#14 Expelliarmus

Posted 13 February 2019 - 06:22 AM

A letter a day is more appropriate than a letter a week. Weekly is too slow. Letter-sound acquisition is not compromised by doing 5 letters a week.

That said I wouldn’t do masses of homework about the letter of the day. Maybe encourage an activity while you’re making dinner - there are lots to do and by next term or late this term there will be high frequency vocab words to practice as well. Most FYOSers love using whiteboards to write so that’s not often difficult to get them to use. Other writing taks they find enjoyable are chalk on the footpath, a sauce bottle squirting water on the patio, paint with water on the side of the house and writing in shaving cream.

I’d try and do a couple of you can fit it in every now and then as it helps consolidate. But if not bend over backwards or stress anyone out doing it.

Edited by Expelliarmus, 13 February 2019 - 09:54 PM.

#15 lozoodle

Posted 13 February 2019 - 06:40 AM

Yeah its been standard with my 3. Don't sweat it its nothing too full on. Just sight words, readers, a little bit of time blending sounds.

It'll be fine. I'm on 5 days a week work and its still fine - if you miss a day, so be it the world won't end :)

#16 Kiwi Bicycle

Posted 13 February 2019 - 07:00 AM

My DS prep homework is a daily reader and the occassional show and tell presentation, which I suspect might be once a month or so. That's it. He's doing his alphabet scrapbook thing in class.

#17 DontKnow2015

Posted 13 February 2019 - 07:53 AM

The kindy teachers for DD which was my last one had a sound book, a tricky word book and readers.  Later in the year the kids got word boxes with the blending sounds.  

You just had to do 5 minutes of practice on them.  The readers were introduced towards the end of term 1 and we had two a week.

This DD has speech issues and is currently going through formal diagnosis of ADHD.  

We do five minute bursts either in the morning or before bed.  The blending words that came later in kindy have been something that the school and her speech therapist are working on together.  The nights that we do readers with her we dropped her story as "reading" is not her thing...

I work 30 hours a week and have two other kids so know what you mean about it being busy.  Because I know that DD struggles with attention span issues I like to do the short sessions with her as it blends it with the work that she is doing with her speech therapist.  

Work in what you can don't sweat the rest...  I am also big one for prepping pasta bakes and things which are just done.  DH and I try do this on the Sunday to take the heat out of the cooking duties during the week.

For the record my DS was never given as much as DDs he is in year 6 now and is in extension classes.  When he went through Prep in Queensland we just had a list of site words and two readers a week to practice.

#18 barrington

Posted 13 February 2019 - 08:35 AM

Do the workbook on the days you don't work.  On your work days, talk about the sound of the week in the car on the way to school.

#19 Renovators delight

Posted 13 February 2019 - 08:44 AM

Our school (K-6) has a no homework policy. One of the things I really, really like about the school. The principal, who has just celebrated 30 years in education, is very much opposed to homework.

They do get readers from about second term in prep, which are encouraged, but they get time in class each morning to do them as well. There was also a book of words, tracing etc sent home as a completely optional extra. Nobody cared if we did anything with them or not.

Fortunately DS1 progressed past the highest readers the school had so he didn't have any in term 4 :ninja: and they haven't started yet this year.

#20 hills mum bec

Posted 13 February 2019 - 08:48 AM

This is FYOS?  My kids all had some sort of homework in FYOS.  Usually only a reader every night and sight words.  15 minutes on the sound of the day sounds a bit extreme.

#21 Daffy2016

Posted 13 February 2019 - 08:49 AM

At 5yo I would probably politely decline and instead spend time on shared reading. Maybe letter sounds as they come up during normal life - like talking about the foods they’re eating for dinner or something.

#22 bees-knees

Posted 13 February 2019 - 08:51 AM

I'm in SA, so to me, kingergarten is the year before so school, so I freaked out a bit at the title!

But yeah, all of my kids started getting homework in FYOS, usually a reader and some sight words to practice. I would assume that's pretty standard.

#23 Mooples

Posted 13 February 2019 - 08:51 AM

If you don’t have time, you don’t have time but anything you can do will help consolidate what she’s doing in class. Talking about the letters and sounds, words that begin and end in that sound, finding words in books etc are all super easy and can be done any time and I’m sure the teacher would prefer you doing those and not having anything in the book than doing nothing at all. I do believe reading should be done everyday (or as close to everyday as possible) as it really does make a difference.

#24 SuperMombie3

Posted 13 February 2019 - 09:15 AM

DD was in kindy (fyos) last year. We had readers from week 5.  Expectation was to do at least one reader every night, 5-15 minutes depending on how many you did.  And once a fortnight they had to do a little talk in front of the class, required maybe 30 minutes once a fortnight in prep - discussing what she wanted to say, DD drew a picture or chose a photo depending on topic, then me writing the text down and later in the year her copying it out once she could write well.  I thought that was a good balance of homework.  Oh and over the winter holidays we were asked to work on any sounds they hadn't yet mastered.  Got a list home, did 10 minutes here and there.

Edited by SuperMombie3, 13 February 2019 - 09:16 AM.

#25 bikingbubs

Posted 13 February 2019 - 09:25 AM

Sounds normal for FYOS.  I didn't treat it as formal homework and usually got done while I was cooking dinner.  Sight words are pretty easy to do on the fly.  I would often just also write a list of words and get them to do those as well.

Readers I made more of an effort with - but also I reminded myself it was nice to sit down and do something one on one with them so became a nice part of our evening routine.

Don't stress too much over it though.

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