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Home learning

Home 'work' or Home 'learning'?

Learning at Burnside is fun!  Work is a chore.  Our home learning is intended to develop our pupils' excitement and passion for their learning and to help parents support their children at home.


Key principles

Top education researchers tell us that homework has little impact for primary age pupils, unless it requires children to rehearse and practise.  Other commentators are increasingly highlighting pressure on children and the need for them to enjoy their childhood, having a break from school work at home.  Leading educationalists are also arguing the case for more creativity in the curriculum to better prepare children for the world of work, especially where it is predicted that many of the jobs that our 5 year olds will start are not yet known!


Research tells us that learning and understanding are deepened through repetition and practice.  Key skills such as learning times tables for maths and practice of spelling patterns can be practised at home.  We believe that reading should be part of a child's daily routine.  Learning beyond the school, with or without the support of parents, enable pupils to enjoy spending time on an extended task and lets them develop their creativity.


Our home learning routines

  •  The things that children need time to practice and rehearse:
    • reading and/or talking about their reading to an adult for at least 20 minutes, 5 times a week
    • learning spelling patterns linked to age-related expectations 
    • reciting multiplication tables to increase their fluency so that they can be applied in other areas of maths and problem solving. 

Reading PLUS

Children in Key Stage Two have daily Reading Plus sessions to improve reading efficiency. When children can read efficiently it frees up mental energy to further comprehend and gain enjoyment from reading. Reading Plus is on online reading programme, which supports children to become curious, confident, lifelong readers. It accelerates each child’s reading achievement through personalised instruction and intervention. It teaches silent reading fluency, comprehension and vocabulary with software that meets each child’s individual reading level. Weekly assignments are set with personalised instructions for pupils, these include visual skills development for eye-tracking, reading tasks for comprehension and fluency, and vocabulary tasks. Children have a personal login to access Reading Plus at home.



TimesTables Rockstars!


TT Rockstars is an online programme we have introduced to encourage children to have fun with multiplication facts while improving fluency, recall and speed. Children can access it in their own time on any IOS, Android or Windows device.


What is it?

Times Tables Rock Stars is a carefully sequenced programme of times tables practice. 


How does it work?

Incorrect answers are always immediately corrected in front of your child so that they start to associate the correct answer to every question. The clever code behind the scenes works out which times tables facts each child is consistently taking longer to answer and then it gradually starts to present these facts more frequently until they have mastered them. It will also ask related division questions 20% of the time in order to reinforce division facts.


Where does this fit with National Curriculum expectations?

All pupils at the end of year 4 in England will take an online multiplication tables check. The NC specifies that pupils at this stage should be able to recall the multiplication tables up to and including 12x12.

The check aims to support pupils to master multiplication skills, which are essential for future success in mathematics. It will help to identify pupils who have not yet mastered this mathematical concept, so additional support can be provided.

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