Wednesday, November 6, 2013

The Homework Hall of Fame {Newest Freebie}

Oh me, oh my! I am so excited to share this one with you!!
To be honest, I have not had the chance to try it out in my classroom yet, but I know it's gonna be craze amaze! I have a feeling that telling my kids that they can earn a night off of homework by turning in homework for the week will be all they need. Everyone likes a night off!

Last year, I didn't get homework turned in very consistently. When I say that I am under exaggerating. The list of names on my board was loooooooong. Each week we have Wednesday Fun. This is supposed to encourage kids to turn in homework and they earn this extra recess time. It was not workin' - not - at - all. This year is a whole new group of kids, though. 

I hear from my 3rd grade teamster that homework is going much better this year. We have kinda taken on a new outlook when it comes to homework. Before, we were set on preparing them for what is to come in 4th grade. We gave weekly homework and along with daily assignments to complete and turn in at the end of the week they had spelling, reading and flashcard practice every day. It was obviously a lot to expect.

I have come to the conclusion that there is no perfect homework system. Some families want more homework. Some families are so busy that they like the freedom that weekly homework provides. Some like project homework. Others would rather have packets. There is such an assortment of opinions and I have heard a lot of them lately. After talking with families, friends and other teachers here is what we decided when we were developing homework for this year: 

1. It needs to be manageable for us to grade and return. We don't want to spend our weekends grading homework that is not going to tell us much anyway. 
2. We want families to be informed and involved in what we are doing in the classroom. 
3. Our reasoning for doing homework is to help students develop responsibility and TEACH their family what we are learning in class. One of the best ways to become proficient at any skill is by teaching is to others.
4. We want to prevent the overwhelming feeling and the nightly fight that homework can bring to a home. 

With all of this in mind, we are keeping it as simple as can be. Students are still expected to read every night. This is the most important part of homework. For the second part, we simply have students take out their homework journals at the end of the day and we give them a homework assignment based on what we learned that very day. It might be 10 math problems, a writing prompt, or we might even send home a game to play with the whole family. Whatever it is, we want it to be fresh in their minds and quick. 

 Now that I have explained what we do I will quit yappin' and get to the freebie!

To encourage students to turn in homework I developed the 
Homework Hall of Fame!

Here is how it works...

Each week all students begin in the Hall of Fame. 
I check homework in the morning while students are busy working. 
If they completed their homework from the night before they remain in the Hall of Fame. 
If they don't they are removed for the week :(. 

At the end of the week anyone in the Hall of Fame gets a ticket for one night homework free! 
They can use it whenever they want. They can even save them up and take a whole week off. 
It doesn't matter to me as long as they are working hard and being responsible! 

I have thought about letting kids get back on the board if they turn in their homework a day late.
 I am still not sure about it, but we'll see. What do you think?

You'll have to decide what works best with your homework routine. 
I also included other ticket options that might be motivating for your kids; no shoes, sit anywhere for the day, wear a hat and extra computer time.

 I wondered if it might be enough incentive to just be in the Hall of Fame and feel proud about turning in your homework without any sort of reward. 
I'm thinking about trying this to start.
 I love anything that is just that intrinsic feeling of proud but sadly, it just doesn't work as well. 

To put this together I bought a pizza pan from the $ Tree. I covered poster board in some cutesy wrapping paper and glued the All Time Hall of Fame and the title on. I then laminated it. After it was all laminated I hot glued the pizza pan on.
 I included editable labels for you so you can add your own student's names. You can also use the number system if that is something you already do in your room. 
I laminated the labels and added a magnet to the back of each. 

For the All Time Hall of Fame I will keep student's names who turn in their homework for the entire quarter!

I can't wait to put this to use. If you try it out I would love to hear how you adapt it and how it works!!

Just click HERE or any of the pictures above to get it. 


  1. Hmm I may have to try this! I have one class that desperately needs an incentive and this could be just the ticket! Thanks for sharing.

    Sara :)
    The Colorful Apple

  2. I feel the same way about homework! I love your positive system. I send homework home monthly! They get a packet of homework for the month added to their homework binders. It makes management easy for me as I check it once a month. I also "eyeball" their progress throughout the month. I've gone to this system based on the busy schedules of families. With so many working families getting home after 6:00 in the evening and added soccer or other practices, I just don't think I can dictate which days they HAVE to do homework. So they can pick, but it needs to be completed. It has worked beautifully for several years. The parents love it and my over achievers love working ahead!