Homework Policy


The Timber Trail staff and parents view homework as an integral part of the school experience. Active, successful student participation in homework supports our beliefs of how children learn best. Homework benefits s RATIONALEtudents not only by promoting academic success, but also by providing valuable opportunities to build important character traits.

The best way to build character traits is to have the opportunity to practice them. Regular homework assignments help students learn responsibility, perseverance, self-discipline, and time management. Perhaps most significantly, students grow in their independence by being able to successfully complete school related tasks with a minimum of direct help.

An important Timber Trail goal is to promote a desire for lifelong learning within each child. Through frequent and successful participation in homework, students discover that learning takes place all the time, in school and at home. Not only do students have the opportunity to practice new skills and concepts at their own pace, they may also explore and broaden their own particular interests through creative homework assignments. 

In reflecting the Timber Trail beliefs about our school and community, homework also supports our emphasis on community collaboration and partnership. Through regular homework assignments, parents stay informed about our school's philosophy, curriculum, and objectives. Parents provide positive support by establishing an atmosphere conducive to students' successful completion of homework. This is an indispensable opportunity to show children how much we value education. Lastly, both parents and students benefit as homework provides important opportunities for strengthening parent-child interaction. 


There are a variety of recommended allotted times for homework across the nation. However, there is an indication that excessively long periods of daily homework are often counterproductive. Throughout the week, homework will vary in time depending on specific classroom assignments and work production during the school day. Typically, homework will average between 15-45 minutes a night, depending on the student's grade level, ability, and time-on-task while doing homework. Remember, one critical component of homework should be reading each night for at least 15 minutes. 

At Timber Trail, teachers will use discretion and good judgment about the types and amounts of homework assigned each night. Teachers are expected to communicate their homework expectations to parents. 


Homework assignments will vary from day to day, from teacher to teacher. While reading is an appropriate "standing" assignment, as is finishing incomplete work for the school day, over the course of the school year you might also see: 


These are assignments which are often given on a day-to-day basis, offering students opportunities to practice and master new skills which have been presented in the classroom. Writing spelling words, using them in sentences, and completing a math worksheet are examples of practice homework. 


These are assignments that provide students the time to review background information to gain the maximum benefits from an upcoming lesson or to prepare for an upcoming quiz. Reading a chapter in preparation for discussion or a quiz is an example of preparatory homework.


These are assignments that enable students to transfer specific skills and concepts to new situations. Conducting an experiment at home or evaluating a new piece of writing for one of the Six Traits (ideas, organization, voice, word choice, sentence fluency, conventions) are examples of extension homework. 


These are assignments that challenge students to apply higher order thinking abilities as they integrate skills and concepts from many different areas to produce a major original project. Most often these are long term assignments. Creating a diorama of a Civil War battlefield, producing a book of art and poetry, or creating a multimedia project on the computer are examples of creation homework. 


· Be aware of homework assignments before leaving school.

· Take homework assignments and all necessary supplies home.

· Spend the necessary time on homework each night.

· Demonstrate pride in homework by focusing on quality.

· Seek help from parents if needed.

· Submit finished homework to the teacher, neatly done and on time. 


· Allow your child to unwind after school.

· Consider homework as a nonnegotiable (extracurricular activities should not preempt timely completion of homework).

· Make agreements with your child regarding homework rules (when, where, how).

· Limit T.V. viewing.

· Arrange a quiet time and study area including proper lighting.

· Expect regular assignments.

· Encourage reading for pleasure.

· Show confidence in your child's ability; never do your child's homework for him/her.

· Expect some math assignments to include family communication components.

· Spend a few minutes each evening monitoring your child's progress on required homework.

· Encourage your child to report to you on long term assignments and projects.

· Hold your child accountable for getting homework to and from school. Reinforce responsibility by not delivering homework to school.

· Contact your child's teacher if assignments are not arriving home.

· Contact your child's teacher if assignments seem to be taking an inordinate amount of time and energy.

· Contact your child ' s teacher if you child does not seem to have enough homework.


Students are responsible for finding out the assignments missed and then completing them. If parents want to pick up missed school assignments at the end of the day, it is necessary to call the office by 9:00 A.M. This allows the teacher the entire day to gather the appropriate materials. DO NOT drop into the classroom to ask for missed assignments. This is disruptive and interruptions of this sort subtract valuable minutes from student instructional time. As a general rule, school work is NOT provided ahead of time for family trips/vacations. Standing assignments such as reading and journal writing may be given at the discretion of the teacher. Make-up assignments will be given when the student returns to school.