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NYC Helpline: How To: Manage Your Classroom
View Instructional Videos for Teachers about Classroom Management

Classroom Management (Secondary)

A high school science teacher demonstrates how her structured and routine-based classroom environment is the key to success.

Classroom Management (Elementary)

An elementary school teacher guides us through her daily classroom routines and shows how consistency and structure are essential.

Classroom Management through Cooperative Groups

View two elementary school teachers demonstrate how they engage their students through group work to help them learn.

How to Home
NYC Helpline: Manage Your Classroom
NYC Helpline: How To Get Started

Homework Planning
Carolyn Hornik

Not only is it important to plan lessons, it is also important to have daily homework assignments planned in advance and written in the plan book. Record homework assignments in a designated location in the classroom. A chart, dry erase board, or space on the chalk board may be used to record the homework assignments. Provide sufficient time for students to write the assignments. Having students organize homework assignments in a homework planner will make it easier for students and parents to keep track of what homework is assigned. Be sure to have students keep phone numbers or e-mail addresses of other students in the class to get homework from when they have been absent.

When setting up rules and routines, homework expectations and routines should also be included. Make parents aware of the homework policy. To ensure that homework is viewed as an important part of the school day, all homework assignments must be checked in class. Numbering homework assignments can aid in keeping track of homework assignments. This helps in providing missed assignments for absentee students.  Some teachers also keep a homework assignment binder in which all assigned homework is listed. It is also helpful to remind students to bring home appropriate materials needed to complete the day’s homework.

For younger students, color coding materials such as notebooks and workbooks will make it easier to identify the correct material to bring home each day. When assigning long term assignments, provide due dates for each step of the assignment to keep the project from becoming overwhelming.  Post homework on a teacher web site. You can also post a short review and example of how the assignments should be done. A teacher e-mail address can be included so students who need help can post questions.

Homework should be assigned as an outgrowth of the concepts and skills presented in class. Homework can reinforce lessons and be thought provoking and challenging. For early childhood students, homework should not take longer than 15-30 minutes per day. For upper elementary students, homework might take between 30-60 minutes. Middle school students can handle 60-75 minutes of homework each day and high school students should be assigned up to 2 hours of homework a day.

Homework assignments should be cyclical to provide review and reinforcement of skills and concepts previously taught. Include some examples or questions related to previously presented material to keep the information fresh in students’ minds. Take into account the individual needs of your students. Differentiate or modify assignments as necessary. Create assignments that reach the multiple intelligences of your students.

It is important to set up a homework help time. Homework help can be provided by the teacher or by students in the class. Homework buddies can be assigned so that students can help one another when they have difficulty completing homework assignments.

Encourage parents to post a calendar on which long term assignments are listed. Enlist parents’ involvement by asking them to take an active role in making sure homework assignments are completed. Inform parents to provide a homework area in the home that is quiet, has adequate lighting, and materials needed to complete homework. Provide resources to students and parents that need homework help.

Additional homework help can be found at:

After school programs offer homework time with help available from teachers.

UFT Dial-A-Teacher
Students and parents can call in to receive homework help from a NYC teacher; available in English Spanish, Italian, French, Haitian-Creole, Greek, Hebrew, Korean and Russian

Homework Helper refdesk.com
K-12 reference guide for all subject areas

Student Guide - DiscoverySchool.com
Homework help, articles, interactive activities, virtual tours, science fair ideas, and projects for kids

K-12 homework resources organized by subject and grade-level

Live, online tutoring with personalized programs for students

K-12 homework help in all subject areas, available in English and Spanish

Free math lessons and math homework help from basic math to algebra, geometry and more.

National Geographic Homework Help
Pictures, articles, maps, and multimedia presentations on an array of subjects

See also: What Homework Controversy...? by Judi Fenton.


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