At Fairlawn, we believe that home learning should be enjoyable, collaborative, interesting and challenging. Home learning should not be stressful or onerous and should not lead to conflict between children and parents.
Home learning may be an extension of school learning, but may also involve activities that are not prescribed by the school, such as visiting a museum or reading a book from home. At Fairlawn, we believe that it is also important that children have time after school to play and socialize.
Each half term, classes receive a Learning Letter from their class teacher. This highlights the learning that will be taking place . Parents who wish their children to partake in more home learning than is prescribed by the school, should use this for guidance.
We believe that a rich dialogue between teacher and parents about reading is important to help children make good progress.
We encourage all children to read at home on a daily basis. This may be alone or with an adult/sibling.
We expect the adults at home to play an active part in promoting reading for pleasure.
We believe it is important that children experience a range of reading material, including e-books. We have a school subscription to Bug Club. Your child has a log in, and you are welcome to access this at home.
Spellings will be sent home every Friday, and the children will be tested on these the following Friday. Your child should spend time learning their spellings at home; little and often is the key! Some of these spellings will be personalised, and the teacher will be looking out for these words being spelt correctly in your child’s writing. Other words will follow a taught phonic or spelling pattern.
Key Stage 1 and 2
In Key Stage 1 and 2, we set paper home learning for maths. Your child will have their own maths home learning folder and will receive a home learning sheet every Friday. This will need to be completed and handed back by the following Wednesday.
The home learning will be a consolidation of what the children have been learning in class.
Your child may be set an additional challenge on Sumdog. This will be written at the bottom of the sheet.
Please continue to encourage your child to play Sumdog and TTRockstars regularly.
We use Sumdog to support children in maths for years 1 – 6. Sumdog is a fantastic website (and APP) that uses motivating games to encourage children to practise their mental maths skills.
It’s simple to use Sumdog. Either log in through your browser, or download the app for iPad & iPhone, Android or Kindle. Your child can practise anytime, anywhere! As children play, they answer questions. Sumdog personalises the questions for each one, and tracks their progress through the school curriculum.
Log in and explore
Each child has been given a unique username and password. This allows them to access their personalised home screen, which includes information about their animal level, earned coins and the Sumdog house. This is where they can scroll through and choose games to play, or select which skill to work on.
The first few questions are aimed at finding the right level for the child, so they may vary in difficulty at first. Once they have completed the diagnostic test, the children will be given questions suitable for their level and based on a target skill that Sumdog has identified as needing further practice. Each time a child becomes confident at answering questions about that skill, Sumdog automatically selects a new skill to develop.
Each week, teachers have the option to set a challenge of answering a certain number of questions related to a focus area. Different challenges can be set for different children in order to support their progress. Teachers can access useful information about children’s accuracy in answering questions correctly and how much time they have been spending on Sumdog.
We are also extremely passionate about learning and embedding our times tables. The pupils in years 2 – 6 have their own TT Rockstars account and earn coins for their own rockstar by concentrating on different times tables each week and consolidating the ones they learn by revisiting them each half-term. The children can enter the garage, studio, arena or a festival!
Reasons to play in the Garage: we recommend the Garage is the default game to play as it’s designed to help pupils get faster. After a few games, the TT Rock Star software engine starts to work out which number facts each pupil struggles with and then begins presenting those questions more frequently.
We recommend that pupils play 3 times (a total of 3 minutes) in the Garage every day.
The teacher can control which questions pupils get in the Garage so it’s more appropriate for younger primary school children to play in the Garage, particularly as they start out with the 2s, 5s and 10s. It’s free from the distractions of competing against other pupils and as an extra incentive, pupils get 10 coins per correct answer instead of 1. The focus, however, should be on competing against themselves.
Times-tables: unrestricted, i.e. questions from 1 × 1 up to 12 × 12 are possible. Roughly 1 in 5 questions are division.
Reasons to play in the Studio: we would get pupils to play in the Studio to have a measure of their overall speed on all the times tables. Much like being in a recording studio, this is where we want TT Rock Stars to record their best performances.
The TT Rock Star engine works out the children’s mean score over their last 10 games in the Studio and it’s their speed in the Studio that determines their rock status. The more questions on average that they answer correctly in a minute, the higher their rockstar status. Starting off as a Busker they get to Rock Star if their per question average is 3 seconds, Rock Legend if it’s under 2 seconds or Rock Hero if their average speed is 1 second or less per question.
Pupils may find it easier to understand on a per game basis, which would look like this:
If you answer 20 or more questions you’re a Rock Star!
If you answer 30 or more questions you’re a Rock Legend!
If you answer 60 or more questions you’re a Rock Hero!
Fortunately, because it’s based on the mean over the last 10 games, a single bad performance doesn’t have an exaggerated effect on the status.
From the innovators who bring you Times Tables Rock Stars, comes a highly engaging platform for learning to add and subtract… NumBots!
NumBots is all about every child achieving the “triple win” of understanding, recall and fluency in mental addition and subtraction, so that they move from counting to calculating.
So that children can solve more complex problems, NumBots’ intelligent practice methodology focuses on automatic recall of number facts as well as developing conceptual understanding.
Pupils choose their own Bot before launching into ‘Story’ and ‘Challenge’ modes, where our algorithm takes care of their learning. As they progress, pupils collect achievement badges and unlock hundreds of new levels and challenges.
For most effective practice we suggest playing for at least 3 minutes a day, 4 or 5 times a week.
We believe Sumdog, TTrockstars and Numbots are fantastic tools for keeping the children of Fairlawn School engaged in maths. We hope that this guide will enable you to be involved too. If you have any further questions, please do ask Mrs Dhillon.
Home Learning in Year 6
The home learning expectations for Year 6 are determined by the class teachers as they prepare the children for secondary school. There will be a weekly writing task set.