One month to go and I’m procrastinating on the two priority items I’ve marked for myself: exit tickets and homework for Pre-Algebra. All last year, I was excited because I’d finished creating all the homework packets for Math 7 and Algebra I, thinking that this summer I wouldn’t have to do anything with homework but edit some typos. However, since my Math 7 classes have been shifted to someone else and I’ve been given Pre-Algebra, I have to work on that curriculum.
I’ve struggled with how to deal with homework before. My first year, I worked kinda out of the book and kinda with whatever handouts I could find. However, the book is terrible, especially now that Virginia has adapted new SOL. So, in coming across this comment on Dan’s blog, I developed a template for homework.
Each skill gets its own page (or several, if it’s something like integer operations), followed by relevant vocabulary. When that homework is due, I project the key via the doc cam, with one warning: there is one intentional mistake in the key (and sometimes accidental ones, too) and the students are supposed to find it. I’ve really found that students have been much more willing to ask questions this way, at least as opposed to showing a key with no mistakes.
So, what I’m supposed to be doing right now, is creating the homework pages for each skill and then compiling them by unit and saving them as a pdf. I post the pdf version on the class website so that any student who has lost the original copy may download and print another one.
For the past couple of years, I haven’t generally graded each homework individually. I walk around to see who is checking/copying/lost. I’ve collected the unit packets for a grade (all homework/notebook grades make up 5% of the overall average), which is a quick effort grade, but I always feel a little dirty for messing up sbg.