Reflections: Takeaway Homework

I love takeaways. Especially the type that gets students excited about homework again (and also this type doesn’t make my wallet lighter).

I trialled this excellent concept with my year 7 class and what a success it has been! I have never seen so many students eager to discuss homework before. Below are some examples of the great pieces of homework submitted to me this term:

So, what went well and how can I improve on this for the next term?

The Good:

  • nearly every single student spoke to me about homework and submitted different and interesting pieces each week/every 2 weeks
  • students were happy to redo their homework if something was missing or could be immediately improved
  • some students were eager to see what their peers submitted each week, which in turn gave them ideas for their next submission
  • I was eager to see what my students submitted each week
  • it was pretty easy to keep a record of what each student submitted each week making a follow-up of late submissions, or worse no submissions, easier.
  • I got to eat lots of cakes!

The Bad (sort of…):

  • there were quite a few submissions and I found it hard to keep up with marking the homework towards the end of term!
  • quite a few students opted to make cake but didn’t focus on the actual Science it was supposedly representing. I tried to salvage this mid-way through the term by insisting on a page explaining the Science depicted by their edible creations
  • none of the students tried the collaborative items on the menu. One student did complete of these tasks but by themselves!

The Ugly:

  • I had cake. There is nothing ugly about anything that gets me cake.

My plans for Term 2 are as follows:

  • set aside time each week to look through and comment on each piece of homework
  • make it clear that if a student wishes to submit something edible, they HAVE to submit a page on the Science that it represents
  • encourage students to choose a variety of different tasks for their homework, including collaborating to produce something bigger and better than they would if they worked alone

I will be updating this post around Easter. Till then, I look forward to getting more takeaway!


Resources/credit:

My take of the takeaway homework in the form of a powerpoint explaining my rules and expectations.

Idea/context by: Ross McGill at Teacher Toolkit

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