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Homework Success: Principles, Practicalities, and Products

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1 Homework Success: Principles, Practicalities, and Products
21st Century Homework Success: Principles, Practicalities, and Products EARCOS 2013

2 For further conversation about any of these topics:
Rick Wormeli Herndon, Virginia, USA (Eastern Standard Time Zone) @rickwormeli (Twitter)

3 Five Purposes for Homework
Practice Interaction Application Extension Preparation

4 Important: Homework is never given to teach students the material the first time. We assign homework only after checking to make sure students already understand the material. Homework is never used to demonstrate full mastery. It is formative. We provide ample feedback, but not ultimate evaluation of mastery.

5 Feedback vs Assessment
Feedback: Holding up a mirror to students, showing them what they did and comparing it what they should have done – There’s no evaluative component! Assessment: Gathering data so we can make a decision Greatest Impact on Student Success: Formative feedback

6 Be clear: We grade against standards, not routes students take or techniques teachers use to achieve those standards. What does this mean we should do with class participation or discussion grades?

7 Four Inappropriate Purposes for Homework
To appear vigorous and demanding To teach material the first time To keep students busy To assess students’ final, summative mastery of a topic

8 Let “No homework” be the default response, not “Yes, there’s homework
Let “No homework” be the default response, not “Yes, there’s homework.” Then we have to fight for the justification.

9 Consider, too, how personal technology is changing the way our students do things.
We’ve entered a 24-7 work cycle. Official homework as we know it will soon fade.

10 Let’s talk about the classroom and homework…

11 Information Age is old school
Information Age is old school. We’re in the High Concept Age, and we have the tech to pursue it: Twitter and other social media Daily newspapers downloaded for analysis Museum school partnerships and Virtual Tours QR codes attached to classroom activities Student-designed apps Khan Academy and similar on-line tutorials Graduation in four states now requires one course taken completely on-line Google Docs Google Glass/Eyes – wearables, implantables, augments

12 MOOCS – Massive Open On-line Course
Crowd-Sourcing MIT Open Courseware TED talks and Screencasts (ex. Camtasia Studio) Voicethread Moodle PBL’s Prezi iMovie Edmodo

13 Balance of Support and Challenge Social Interaction
Characteristics of Motivational Classrooms (Rick Lavoie, The Motivation Breakthrough, 2007) Relevance Control Balance of Support and Challenge Social Interaction Safety and Security Motivational Forces (Needs): To Belong To be Acknowledged To be Independent To Control To be Important To Assert To Know

14 What Works? Expertise in the age group we teach -- Circle in our lesson plans where we see evidence of our expertise in teaching this age group. For example, young adolescent expertise includes: Structure and clear limits Physical activity every single day Frequent and meaningful experiences with fine and performing arts Opportunities for self-definition Safe and inviting emotional atmosphere Students experiencing real competence Meaningful participation in families, school, and communities Basic of students met: food, water, rest, good health, physical presence.

15 “Emotion drives attention, attention drives learning.”
-- Robert Sylwester, 1995, p. 119, Wolfe

16 Process Meaning-Making
Moving Content into Long-term Memory Students have to do both, Access Sense-Making Process Meaning-Making

17 More Concerns and Tips Make sure homework practices what you’re teaching. How does building a diorama or making a coloring book based on scenes from the novel, Touching Spirit Bear (Mikaelsen), teach students literary devices, reading, writing, theme, critical analysis, novel structure, or anything else about literacy? Any assignment requiring parent involvement in order to understand and/or complete it is usually inappropriate. ‘Example of inadequate student preparation: “Mom, I have to do a report on cells. How do I start?”

18 More Concerns and Tips During novel studies: Stop the note-taking! Don’t commit Reader Rigormoritis! -- “How would you like it if you were watching a movie and someone interrupted you every ten minutes and asked you questions about what you were seeing?” (Bennett and Kalish, p. 130) Daily exercise has dramatic impact on the development of the brain’s frontal lobe (Bennett and Kalish, p. 91). This affects decision-making, abstract and moral reasoning, personality, impulsivity control, immediate working memory, insight, and being aware of consequences

19 More Concerns and Tips Avoid any homework assignment that requires the purchase of any item(s) beyond the standard school supply list In order to maximize learning, students need 9 – 11 hours of sleep per night regularly. Help parents make sure they get them. Practice makes permanent Practice builds automacity “Homework is like coming home and doing your taxes every night.” (Bennett and Kalish, p. 18)

20 “The best way to make students hate reading is to make them prove to you that they have read.”
-- Jim Deluca, as quoted in Kohn, p. 177 “To design in advance that homework in certain subjects will be assigned on certain days is to sacrifice thoughtful instruction on the altar of predictability.” -- Kohn, p. 166 “If we sat around and deliberately tried to come up with a way to further enlarge the achievement gap, we might just invent homework.” -- Deborah Meier, as quoted in Kohn, p. 126

21 Two Homework Extremes that Focus Our Thinking
If a student does none of the homework assignments, yet earns an “A” (top grade) on every formal assessment we give, does he earn anything less than an “A” on his report card? If a student does all of the homework well yet bombs every formal assessment, isn’t that also a red flag that something is amiss, and we need to take corrective action?

22 This assignment had no legitimate educational value.
If we do not allow students to re-do work, we deny the growth mindset so vital to student maturation, and we are declaring to the student: This assignment had no legitimate educational value. It’s okay if you don’t do this work. It’s okay if you don’t learn this content or skill. None of these is acceptable to the highly accomplished, professional educator.

23 Does this sentiment cross a line?
“If we don’t count homework heavily, students won’t do it.” Do you agree with this? Does this sentiment cross a line?

24 - 5% or less, preferably 0% -
How much should homework count in the overall grade? - 5% or less, preferably 0% - [If this is a big stretch, start with 10%] Homework performance is not an accurate portrayal of final proficiency or mastery. It’s what we do in route to mastery. We grade students against standards, not the routes by which they achieve them.

25 With hocked gems financing him,
Our hero bravely defied all scornful laughter That tried to prevent his scheme. Your eyes deceive, he had said; An egg, not a table Correctly typifies this unexplored planet. Now three sturdy sisters sought proof, Forging along sometimes through calm vastness Yet more often over turbulent peaks and valleys. Days became weeks, As many doubters spread Fearful rumors about the edge. At last from nowhere Welcome winged creatures appeared Signifying momentous success. -- Dooling and Lachman (1971) pp

26 Priming means we show students:
Prime the brain prior to students doing homework. The impact on learning is much greater! Priming means we show students: What they will get out of the experience (the objectives) What they will encounter as they go through the experience (itinerary, structure)

27 Chance Favors the prepared mind.
-- Pasteur

28 Components of Blood Content Matrix
Red Cells White Cells Plasma Platelets Purpose Amount Size & Shape Nucleus ? Where formed

29 The student’s rough draft:
Red blood cells carry oxygen and nutrients around the body. They are small and indented in the middle, like little Cheerios. There are 5 million per cc of blood. There is no nucleus in mature red blood cells. They are formed in the bone marrow and spleen.

30 Chronological Order Definition and Key words: This involves putting facts, events, a concepts into sequence using time references to order them. Signal words include on (date), now, before, since, when, not long after, and gradually. “Astronomy came a long way in the 1500s and 1600s. In 1531, Halley’s Comet appeared and caused great panic. Just twelve years later, however, Copernicus realized that the sun was the center of the solar system, not the Earth, and astronomy became a way to understand the natural world, not something to fear. In the early part of the next century, Galileo made the first observations with a new instrument – the telescope. A generation later, Sir Issac Newton invented the reflecting telescope, a close cousin to what we use today. Halley’s Comet returned in 1682 and it was treated as a scientific wonder, studied by Edmund Halley.”

31 Compare and Contrast Defintion and Key words: Explains similarities and differences. Signal words include however, as well as, not only, but, while, unless, yet, on the other hand, either/or, although, similarly, and unlike. “Middle school gives students more autonomy than elementary school. While students are asked to be responsible for their learning in both levels, middle school students have more pressure to follow through on assignments on their own, rather than rely on adults. In addition, narrative forms are used to teach most literacy skills in elementary school. On the other hand, expository writing is the way most information is given in middle school.”

32 Cause and Effect Definition and Key words: Shows how something happens through the impact of something else. Signal words include because, therefore, as a result, so that, accordingly, thus, consequently, this led to, and nevertheless. “Drug abusers often start in upper elementary school. They experiment with a parent’s beer and hard liquor and they enjoy the buzz they receive. They keep doing this and it starts taking more and more of the alcohol to get the same level of buzz. As a result, the child turns to other forms of stimulation including marijuana. Since these are the initial steps that usually lead to more hardcore drugs such as Angel Dust (PCP), heroin, and crack cocaine, marijuana and alcohol are known as “gateway drugs.” Because of their addictive nature, these gateway drugs lead many youngsters who use them to the world of hardcore drugs.”

33 Problem and Solution Definition and Key words: Explains how a difficult situation, puzzle, or conflict develops, then what was done to solve it. Signal words are the same as Cause and Effect above. “The carrying capacity of a habitat refers to the amount of plant and animal life its resources can hold. For example, if there are only 80 pounds of food available and there are animals that together need more than 80 pounds of food to survive, one or more animals will die – the habitat can’t “carry” them. Humans have reduced many habitats’ carrying capacity by imposing limiting factors that reduce its carrying capacity such as housing developments, road construction, dams, pollution, fires, and acid rain. So that they can maintain full carrying capacity in forest habitats, Congress has enacted legislation that protects endangered habitats from human development or impact. As a result, these areas have high carrying capacities and an abundance of plant and animal life.”

34 Proposition and Support
Defintion and Key words: The author makes a general statement followed by two or more supporting details. Key words include: In addition, also, as well as, first, second, finally, in sum, in support of, therefore, in conclusion. “There are several reasons that teachers should create prior knowledge in students before teaching important concepts. First, very little goes into long-term memory unless it’s attached to something already in storage. Second, new learning doesn’t have the meaning necessary for long-term retention unless the student can see the context in which it fits. Finally, the brain likes familiarity. It finds concepts with which it is familiar compelling. In sum, students learn better when the teacher helps students to create personal backgrounds with new topics prior to learning about them.

35 Claim and Evidence Defintion and Key words: The author makes a general statement followed by two or more supporting details. Key words include: In addition, also, as well as, first, second, finally, in sum, in support of, therefore, in conclusion. “There are several reasons that teachers should create prior knowledge in students before teaching important concepts. First, very little goes into long-term memory unless it’s attached to something already in storage. Second, new learning doesn’t have the meaning necessary for long-term retention unless the student can see the context in which it fits. Finally, the brain likes familiarity. It finds concepts with which it is familiar compelling. In sum, students learn better when the teacher helps students to create personal backgrounds with new topics prior to learning about them.

36 Enumeration Definition and Key words: Focuses on listing facts, characteristics, or features. Signal words include to begin with, secondly, then, most important, in fact, for example, several, numerous, first, next finally, also, for instance, and in addition. “The moon is our closest neighbor. It’s 250,000 miles away. It’s gravity is only 1/6 that of Earth. This means a boy weighing 120 pounds in Virginia would weigh only 20 pounds on the moon. In addition, there is no atmosphere on the moon. The footprints left by astronauts back in 1969 are still there, as crisply formed as they were on the day they were made. The lack of atmosphere also means there is no water on the moon, an important problem when traveling there.”

37 T-List or T-Chart: Wilson’s 14 Points
Main Ideas Details/Examples 1. 2. 3. 3 Reasons President Wilson Designed the Plan for Peace Three Immediate Effects on U.S. Allies Three Structures/Protocols created by the Plans

38 Cornell Note-Taking Format
Reduce Record [Summarize in short phrases or essential questions next to each block of notes.]    Review -- Summarize (paragraph-style) your points or responses to the questions. Reflect and comment on what you learned. [Write your notes on this side.]

39 Somebody Wanted But So [Fiction]
Somebody (characters)… wanted (plot-motivation)…, but (conflict)…, so (resolution)… .

40 Something Happened And Then [Non-fiction]
Something (independent variable)… happened (change in that independent variable)…, and (effect on the dependent variable)…, then (conclusion)… .

41 Narrowing the Topic The Civil War People Reasons Inventions Battles

42 Is the topic narrow enough to be focused, but broad enough to have plenty to write about?

43 Battles of the Civil War
Gettysburg Vicksburg Antietam Manassas

44 Is the topic narrow enough to be focused, but broad enough to have plenty to write about?

45 Battles of Gettysburg Statistics Strategies Famous People Geography

46 Is the topic narrow enough to be focused, but broad enough to have plenty to write about?

47 What was the “Fish hook” strategy used at the Battle of Gettysburg?
Yeah. That’s it.

48 Writing about Math Paragraph 1: What is the problem about? What am I supposed to find? Paragraph 2: Step-by-Step explanation: First, I…, then I…Finally, I… Paragraph 3: My answer is ______. My answer makes sense because… -- Adapted from Kenney, quoting Jubinville, 2005, p. 38

49 When we summarize, we: Delete some elements Keep some elements
Substitute for some elements. “DKS” Ask students to memorize these three actions.

50 TaRGeTS (Based on Rules-Based Summaries, 1968)
T Trivia (Remove trivial material) R Redundancies (Remove redundant information) G Generalize (Replace specifics/lists with general terms and phrases) TS Determine the Topic Sentence

51 Topic Sentence Subject: Dogs Claim: Make great pets
TS = subject + author’s claim about subject Subject: Dogs Claim: Make great pets TS: “Dogs make great pets.”

52 Motivating Homework Assignments
Provide a clear picture of the final product. Incorporate a cause. Incorporate cultural products. Incorporate students and their classmates in the assignment. Create an audience for the product.

53 Motivating Homework assignments
6. Allow choices. [Mult. Intellig.] 7. Make students collaborators in how homework will be assessed. 8. Have everyone turn in a paper, regardless of whether or not they did the assignment.                    

54 Motivating Homework Assignments
9. Spruce up your prompts. Try better action words: Decide between, argue against, Why did _____ argue for, compare, contrast, plan, classify, retell ____ from the point of view of _____, organize, build, interview, predict, categorize, simplify, deduce, formulate, blend, suppose, invent, imagine, devise, compose, combine, rank, recommend, defend, and choose.

55 Motivating Homework Assignments
Do not give homework passes. Try Homework Deadline Extension Certificates instead. 11. Avoid extra credit assignments. 12. Integrate homework with other subjects.

56 Motivating Homework Assignments
13. Do not give homework on weekends or holidays. 14. Occasionally, let students identify what would be most effective. 15. Five are as good as 15, 10 as good as page can demonstrate mastery more often than 3 pages.    

57 Motivating Homework Assignments
16. Return papers in a timely manner. Break up routine homework with not- so-routine homework. Increase complexity. No “fluff” assignments.

58 It’s interesting to note:
As complexity of assessments go up, so does their completion rate. Complexity usually involves more meaningful work, making connections, recoding content for personal relevance, and applying knowledge as students do something meaningful or useful.

59 To Increase (or Decrease) a Task’s Complexity, Add (or Remove) these Attributes:
Manipulate information, not just echo it Extend the concept to other areas Integrate more than one subject or skill Increase the number of variables that must be considered; incorporate more facets Demonstrate higher level thinking, i.e. Bloom’s Taxonomy, William’s Taxonomy Use or apply content/skills in situations not yet experienced Make choices among several substantive ones Work with advanced resources Add an unexpected element to the process or product Work independently Reframe a topic under a new theme Share the backstory to a concept – how it was developed Identify misconceptions within something

60 To Increase (or Decrease) a Task’s Complexity, Add (or Remove) these Attributes:
Identify the bias or prejudice in something Negotiate the evaluative criteria Deal with ambiguity and multiple meanings or steps Use more authentic applications to the real world Analyze the action or object Argue against something taken for granted or commonly accepted Synthesize (bring together) two or more unrelated concepts or objects to create something new Critique something against a set of standards Work with the ethical side of the subject Work in with more abstract concepts and models Respond to more open-ended situations Increase their automacity with the topic Identify big picture patterns or connections Defend their work

61 Motivating Homework Assignments
19. Journalistic versus encyclopedic 20. Require students to change their interaction with the way they received the information. Ex: If they read it, they draw a response.

62 Journalistic vs Encyclopedic
The autumn night on the Pacific beach was raw and wet, our bones chilled to their marrow, but the show before us warmed places deeper than our skeletons. We were mythological creatures of the forest, spraying green stars from our fingertips, lighting the world with the mere pressure of our feet against the ground…All around us were tiny dinoflagellates and plankton that lit the darkness each time they were disturbed. Though they lit only for a moment, there were billions of them mixed into the sand so wherever we stood, the pressure of our weight made the sand glow bright green for several inches beyond the edges of our feet. When we ran, we left a trail of glowing footprints…

63 Journalistic vs Encyclopedic [Continued]
Bioluminescence results from a chemical reaction within an organism. The chemical that produces the light is luciferin, but the chemical that starts the illumination is luciferase…In the sea, single-cell dinoflagellates light up because of forces that reshape their surface. When the cells contort, light is emitted when protons from acidic vacuoles are put in contact with other cell components that contain the chemicals necessary for bioluminescence…

64 Sample Interesting assignments
Identify the mistake in other’s students’ approaches to the problem. Rank these items in order of importance to Andrew Johnson. Write a Constitution of the your underwater city that reflects the politics of ancient Rome. Create 12 intelligent questions to which the answer is “Ironic” or “Irony.”

65 More Interesting assignments
Create a six-panel comic strip that portrays the event or process. Argue against the decision. Create a PSA for third graders that persuades them to make good snack choices after school. Describe five ways this painting expresses the theme, “Passage.”

66 Critical Learning Tool: Editing
Students edit, not the teachers. Shorten text and edit daily. Assess students’ editing and revising. If helpful, edit in waves. Emphasize the power of editing and revision: “Great books are never written; they are always re-written.” -- Michael Crichton

67 “For sale: baby shoes, never worn.” - Ernest Hemingway
Six Word Memoirs Sample: “For sale: baby shoes, never worn.” - Ernest Hemingway Other Samples: Need more friends or more hobbies. Old age approaches. Better start now. My entourage asleep in his crib. Some shoes will take you anywhere. Life packed neatly away in boxes. My greatest ideas involve duct tape. Two eyes open, but still nearsighted. Hobby became job. Seeking new hobby. Take a moment or three, and write your own 6-word memoir that captures your experience with homework – teaching it or doing it.

68 Logical Fallacies Ad Hominem (Argument To The Man) -- Attacking the person instead of attacking his argument: “Dr. Jones’ conclusions on ocean currents are incorrect because he once plagiarized an research article.” Straw Man (Fallacy of Extension) -- Attacking an exaggerated version of your opponent's position. "Senator Jones says that we should not fund the attack submarine program. I disagree entirely. I can't understand why he wants to leave us defenseless like that." * The Excluded Middle (False Dichotomy) -- Assuming there are only two alternatives when in fact there are more. For example, assuming Atheism is the only alternative to Fundamentalism, or being a traitor is the only alternative to being a loud patriot. * From Jim Morton’s’ “Practical Skeptic” website (  

69 Reading Notations P I agree with this. X I disagree with this.
X I disagree with this. ?? I don’t understand this. !! Wow! (‘Elicits a strong emotion) CL General Claim EV Evidence for the Claim (These can be numbered to indicate their sequence, too: EV1, EV2, EV3…)

70 Decide between… Argue against… Why did… Argue for… Defend… Contrast…
 Analyze… Construct… Revise… Rank… Decide between… Argue against… Why did… Argue for… Defend… Contrast… Devise… Develop… Identify… Plan… Classify… Critique… Define… Rank… Compose… Organize… Interpret… Interview… Expand… Predict… Develop… Categorize… Suppose… Invent… Imagine… Recommend…

71 One-Word Summaries “The new government regulations for the meat-packing industry in the 1920’s could be seen as an opportunity…,” “Picasso’s work is actually an argument for….,” “NASA’s battle with Rockwell industries over the warnings about frozen temperatures and the O-rings on the space shuttle were trench warfare….” Basic Idea: Argue for or against the word as a good description for the topic.

72 Summarization Pyramid
__________ ______________ ____________________ _________________________ ______________________________ ___________________________________ Great prompts for each line: Synonym, analogy, question, three attributes, alternative title, causes, effects, reasons, arguments, ingredients, opinion, larger category, formula/sequence, insight, tools, misinterpretation, sample, people, future of the topic

73 3-2-1 3 – Identify three characteristics of Renaissance art
that differed from art of the Middle Ages 2 – List two important scientific debates that occurred during the Renaissance 1 – Provide one good reason why “rebirth” is an appropriate term to describe the Renaissance 3 – List three applications for slope, y-intercept knowledge in the professional world 2 – Identify two skills students must have in order to determine slope and y-intercept from a set of points on a plane 1 – If (x1, y1) are the coordinates of a point W in a plane, and (x2, y2) are the coordinates of a different point Y, then the slope of line WY is what?

74 Personal Processing “I like, I wish, What if” (p. 121, Seelig)

75 Concept Ladder (J. W. Gillet, C
Concept Ladder (J.W. Gillet, C. Temple, 1986, as described in Inside Words, Janet Allen) Concept: Causes of: Effects of: Language associated with: Words that mean the same as: Historical examples: Contemporary examples: Evidence of: Literature connections made:

76 Metaphors (Gallagher)
Iceberg Square Peg, Round Hole Brake Pedal, Gas Pedal Pencil/Eraser Billiards Table Snow Globe _______ is like a _______ because ________.

77 Metaphors – Analysis Chart
Symbol to Represent Explanation of Symbol How this Symbol Connects to Character/Event Passages Cited to Support this Connection -- “Seen” and “Unseen” Elements/Characteristics Great Books on Using Metaphors to Teach: Deeper Reading (Gallagher) and Metaphors & Analogies: Power Tools for Teach Any Subject (Wormeli)

78 Research on homework’s impact
Setting purpose for assignments has huge impact on completion rate and its impact on learning. As we increase the number of practices, competence grows, but leaps in competence decrease. When it’s early in the learning, choose to do 2 or 3 examples in depth instead of 30 quickly done.  

79 Recommended Homework Amounts per Night for High School
50 to 120 minutes, for all subjects put together General approach for the number of minutes of homework each night: Add a zero to the grade level 

80 Providing feedback on homework
Assignments with multiple entries: check/zero most pages, grade one on which students place a star Small group consensus on answers, raise unresolved problems to the teacher Feedback doesn’t have to come from you, the teacher Separate effort from achievement Make sure there’s feedback

81 Feedback on Homework: Effect Size on Learning
(1.0 is maximum positive Effect, 0.25 and below is educationally insignificant) .28, if there’s no feedback .78, if classmates or self provides feedback .83, if teacher provides feedback

82 Great Vocabulary Homework Assignments
Shape spellings Restaurant Menu Wanted Dead or Alive Posters Taboo Cards Vocabulary Rummy Cards Competitive Conversation using vocabulary

83 Great Writing Homework Assignments
Descriptive Paragraph with no adjectives “Show, Don’t Tell” samples One-Word Summaries Proving historical fiction’s authenticity R.A.F.T. S.– Role, Audience, Format, Topic (Time), Strong Adverb or Verb Inventing a new language (beyond just an alphabet code)

84 Great Math Homework Assignments
Analyze how four different students completed the same math problem. Write about a math discovery that changed the world. Draft a proposal to the city council for a bridge structure for a river, explaining why it is the sturdiest and most cost-efficient option. Present a report on the geometry of a basketball court. Design a lunar colony made only of three-dimensional solids, schematic designs included. Summary of interest earned on a savings account in which the interest rate changed twice. An autobiography of a right angle. Create a physical demonstration or expression of an abstract math concept.

85 Great Social studies/history Homework Assignments
A conversation between two famous people ‘how a piece of literature changed an era An analysis of a political cartoon (or create one) A comic strip that retells a famous incident A response to the question, “If someone from the time period we’re studying were around today, what would he say about modern world issues?” A pledge/anthem/flag/constitution for a historical movement A movie poster with eye-catching graphics, titles, sound-bite reviews from movie critics, and a list of the cast and crew responsible for the film about ___________________ (fill in the vocabulary term, such as “democracy”)

86 Great Science Homework Assignments
Write the life story of a ____________ Create a science calendar in which the picture for each month conveys ________________ Observe _________ for a period of ___ days and determine two hypotheses about it that would make for good investigations Examine a common science misconception and how it is perpetuated Explain why another student obtained certain lab results Create a board game focusing on the basic steps of (insert science cycle or principle) Collect and categorize your collection of ____________

87 Great Art Homework Assignments
Write autobiographies to go with portraits Sculpt with clay while using writing process terms Answer the question: “If a picture/sculpture could talk, what would it say?” Develop synthesis writings: “What does blue sound like?” “Describe red through other senses and experiences not associated with what we can see.” Explain what a piece of art tells us about a particular time period Explain how four different art concepts are expressed in a gymnasium

88 Great Physical Education Homework Assignments
Design and maintain a personal daily exercise regimen for two weeks. Design a Web site or library display that promotes at least four successful ways to get into good physical shape. Explain the impact of exercise on metabolism, muscle health, and academic learning in a way that’s appropriate for students four years younger than you. Identify one life-important decision you have to make and hold it up to each of the criteria for successful decision-making. Determine the target heart rate for people with the following characteristics: ___________________________

89 Great Thinking Homework Assignments
Translate the passage from French to English. What’s the difference between osmosis and diffusion? Classify the items according to their origin. Explain how any whole number with an exponent of zero equals one. Which part/word doesn’t fit? Which comments support the President’s position? Predict what would happen if we changed the temperature in the terrarium. Determine the surface area of the building. Explain how music changed the tone of the film.        

90 Great Thinking Homework Assignments
 Which comment seems politically motivated? Defend the character’s decision to ______________. What’s the logical fallacy in his argument? Add _________ to the scene in the novel. How would it change? Design a better inventory system. Which persuasive essay is most convincing and why? According to the standards set forth by the Treaty, is the country in compliance? Explain. Which algorithm is the most efficient and why? Improve upon the idea in at least one way.

91 Bennett, Sara, Kalish, Nancy; The Case Against Homework: How
Bennett, Sara, Kalish, Nancy; The Case Against Homework: How Homework is Hurting our Children and What We Can Do About It, Crown Publishers, 2006 Connors, Neila. Homework: A New Direction, National Middle School Association, 1999 Cooper, Harris. The Battle Over Homework, Second Edition, Corwin Press, Inc., 2001 Kohn, Alfie. The Homework Myth: Why Our Kids Get Too Much of a Bad Thing, Da Capo Press, 2006 Marzano, Robert, et al. Classroom Instruction That Works, Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development, 2001 Vatterott, Cathy. Re-Thinking Homework: Best Practices That Support Diverse Needs, ASCD, 2009 Wormeli, Rick. Day One and Beyond: Practical Matters for New Middle Level Teachers, Stenhouse Publishers, 2003 Wormeli, Rick. Fair Isn’t Always Equal: Assessment and Grading in the Differentiated Classroom, Stenhouse Publishers, 2006

92 Two more resources to help you consider your approach:
English Journal (NCTE) November 2008, Volume 98, No. 2 “Does Homework Help?” This is a whole journal dedicated to homework! It’s great! Homework Done Right: Powerful Learning in Real-life Situations, Corwin Press, Written by Janet Alleman, Barbara Knighton, Ben Botwinski, Jere Brophy, Roby Ley, Sarah Middlestead

93 Study Executive Function!
Late, Lost, and Unprepared Joyce Cooper-Kohn, Laurie Dietzel Smart but Scattered Peg Dawson, Richard Guare New: Smart but Scattered Teens!


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