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Its back to school time, and for most parents getting our children ready for a new school year means working our way down a very long and expensive to-do list. There are clothes and supplies to buy, forms to fill out, bedtimes to revisit and lunches to make. Fortunately, one of the most importan...

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Homework Questions for Back-to-School Night

Posted by: Angela Norton Tyler on Aug 24, 2009 in Parent Involvement, Homework, Back to School


Angela Norton Tyler
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It's back to school time, and for most parents getting our children ready for a new school year means working our way down a very long and expensive to-do list. There are clothes and supplies to buy, forms to fill out, bedtimes to revisit and lunches to make. Fortunately, one of the most important items on our list only costs about an hour of our time: attending Back-to-School Night.

Back-to-School Night is more than an opportunity to meet the new teacher, reconnect with other parents and peek into your child's still-clean desk. In fact, I truly believe that Back-to-School Night may be the most important school night of the year.

At least when it comes to homework.

Use Back-to-School Night to ask the teacher about his or her homework policy and expectations- in public! Find out everything you need to know, and the rest of the school year will be that much easier. Making absolutely certain that you are clear about homework now means you won't spend the next ten months wondering if you should correct your daughter's math homework. Understanding how long homework should take means you won't have to worry if your son is spending too much time completing nightly assignments. Get it all straight at Back-to-School Night so you know exactly what to do and what to expect.

All you have to do is ask ten easy questions!

Homework Questions for the Teacher:

  1. What is the district homework policy?
  2. What kind of homework do you usually assign?
  3. How long should homework take most nights?
  4. Is homework graded? If yes, is it a separate grade?
  5. Do you want parents to help with homework & projects? How much?
  6. Do you want parents to correct homework?
  7. Do you want to know if homework is taking longer than it should and/or my child does not understand it?
  8. What happens if homework is not turned in?
  9. Do you assign homework on weekends, holidays, vacations, and family school nights (i.e. Reading Night)?
  10. What is the best way to contact you (note, phone, email, visit)?

These are not trick questions; your child's teacher should know the answers and be thrilled that you are asking them! And, if for some reason you feel badly about using a few minutes to clarify homework rules and expectations- don’t! Not only will finding out this information make the rest of the school year easier for your family, you will be helping out ALL of the families in class. Get ready for a few grateful hugs. They might even elect you Parent of the Year!

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